[OSGeo-Discuss] Re: Sign the Hague declaration
arnulf.christl at wheregroup.com
Sat May 17 06:28:03 EDT 2008
> I thought we were talking about forcing governments to offer up
> information in a "open standard" format. Are you saying that if a city
> has standardized on MS Office, it would be ok for them to continue to
> post .doc? I got the feeling that folks are saying these cities need to
> abandon their software and move to other platforms someone arbitrarily
> says is open.
Just to be precise. In the context of this discussion the term standard
should probably not be used in a wording like "if a city has standardized
on MS Office". It should probably rather read "if a city has decided to
exclusively use the software XY". There is noting wrong with this
(although I would not recommend it). But apart from this decision the city
can perfectly well publish their information in a format that does not
bind people to a certain software. It is the ooooold issue of keeping
software and data separate. We do not really need to discuss this again
here, do we?
> This isn't about users of the information because there are several free
> (as in beer, some free as in libre) applications to access those
> "proprietary" documents.
There are quite a few formats that are not accessible without a certain
brand of software. Additionally it can even be illegal to try to get at
the data in any other way. This fact can also be enforced by holding back
use of patent algorithms and restrictive licensing models. These are the
ones in question. Nothing wrong to fight them I'd say.
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