As a result, services and infrastructure in municipalities are minimal.
The new provisions reportedly took effect this week. Software developer Bozhidar Bozhanov, advisor to one of Bulgaria's four deputy prime ministers, orchestrated the new law.
It requires that contracts to create software for the government be developed publicly, meet stated open source definitions, and be provided free for use without limitations. The law affects government-commissioned software only.
Existing license agreements are still intact. The Bulgarian government will continue to buy proprietary software. Open source code is generally higher-quality code," he told LinuxInsider.
That is evidenced by some 90 percent of the software used in businesses and consumer-targeted services such as Facebook, Twitter, Google and Amazon, said Olah, noting that those corporations also see the value of sharing their code with the wider community, because it makes them more attractive to developers.
Political Move The fact that Bulgaria has a populist government makes the adoption of the open source law largely political.
While that is not necessarily bad, there are some big issues with the new legislation, Kostadinov said.
Not everything will need open source coding. The Electronic Governance Act covers just a small portion -- around 10 percent -- of the public procurement.
The military, police, secret and other services are not included in the subject of the Act. The new law does not mean that the whole country is moving to Linux and LibreOffice. Nor does it mean the government demands that Microsoft and Oracle turn over the source code to their products, noted Bozhanov.
The new law means whatever custom software the government procures must be visible and accessible to everyone, according to Bozhanov.
That is especially the case since the cost of proprietary software, such as Microsoft's products, continues to increase, and in light of the trend to an even-more costly subscription-based cost model, observed Brian D.
Despite the advantages of open source software, said Kelley, there has not been a significant number of governments willing to make the jump over the past decade. With "the ever-increasing costs associated with proprietary software, coupled with successful Free and Open Source Software, government migrations may well be the positive impetus to encourage more governments to make the switch to [FOSS] in the future," he said.
Also affecting the migration decision is a plethora of concerns related to open source software. It comes with little support, is not always user-friendly, and is somewhat more vulnerable to cybersecurity issues than the popular proprietary software used by the majority of governments, Kelley said.
The open source software model entails a smaller-than-perceived risk, according to NeverFriday. The reward is huge," he maintained.
If governments set up the policies correctly, they will have better software to work with, and government services to citizens will improve as well, Olah contended. It also requires that development be done in the repository maintained by the agency in accordance with another referenced citation in the law.
The move to adopt the open source software law is intended to prevent vulnerabilities in government websites being left unpatched when a contract expires.
The motivation also is to detect bad security practices earlier, according to Bozhanov. A new government agency is charged with enforcing the law and setting up the public repository. A public register will be developed in the next few weeks to track all projects from inception to technical specs, deliverables and subsequent control, Bozhanov said.
Existing solutions are unaffected, but as part of the same law, all IT contracts must be made public. He left shareware programs behind for the open source world of the Linux desktop. He runs several versions of Windows and Linux OSes and often cannot decide whether to grab his tablet, netbook or Android smartphone instead of using his desktop or laptop gear.A good marketing strategy incorporates what you know about how your business fits into the market and the 5 Ps of marketing to develop the tactics and actions that will achieve your marketing objectives.
Tishman International Companies (ashio-midori.com) has appointed Cushman &Wakefield (ashio-midori.com) and its Bulgarian associate Forton International as an exclusive advisor and letting agent on its first project in Sofia, Bulgaria – Sofia Airport Center (SAC).
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