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(this file last updated: Tuesday, 27 November 2001 3:07 pm)

Open letter: Open standards and open source software are the way forward for NZ Information Technology

(directed to the Rt. Hon. Paul Swain, Minister for Information Technology, the Rt. Hon. Pete Hodgson, Minister of Research, Science and Technology, and the Rt. Hon. Trevor Mallard, Minister of State Services)

Dear Ministers,

My colleagues and I would like you and the NZ government to consider an official position favouring "open source" software (OSS) for computing in the government and in business. We believe OSS presents a much better option for New Zealand than the current situation - nationwide dependence on the software sold by a single foreign vendor whose extremely competitive marketing tactics have caused considerable concern in the US courts.

Given that many governments worldwide are considering similar pro-OSS legislation, NZ taking the lead by adopting an "Open Source-Friendly" position would carry a positive weight in the global IT marketplace comparable to our Nuclear-Free stance. Moreover, we believe such a move would find considerable support from local IT vendors in addition to committed international OSS supporters like IBM, Intel, Sun, and HP/Compaq.

The Big Picture

You are all probably aware that more than 90% of computers in New Zealand run a version of the MicrosoftTM Windows® operating system. As a result, the New Zealand government and most of our businesses are dependent on a closed-source (proprietary) software product developed by a single foreign vendor. In addition to sending hundreds of millions of dollars in license fees to the US, we stifle our domestic IT industry, which can only participate on the fringes of a market wholly controlled by a single player whose business practices are being investigated by governments worldwide, notably in the US 1.

We, a group of New Zealand IT professionals, would like you and the government to consider a compelling alternative: "open source" software (OSS)2 which is enjoying growing support within the IT community both domestically and internationally. We are prepared to present to you its capabilities, as well as our ability to support it. We would welcome an opportunity to discuss ways in which the government can encourage its use by means including legislation, tax incentives, and government funded initiatives.

At minimum, we would like a commitment from the government that all government funded publicly accessible software projects, like the current "e-government initiative"3, be built to open standards. Such a requirement would ensure access to anyone, whether they are using a proprietary or an OSS computing platform.

What is OSS?

The Linux operating system and other OSS has the potential to level the playing field. Unlike the closely guarded source code of proprietary software, anyone can freely access the inner workings of OSS, making domination by a single vendor impossible. In fact, neither Linux nor any other OSS is owned by any one company. They are the work of programmers worldwide, both paid and voluntary, who collaborate through the Internet, contributing working software code which is reviewed by their peers. Instead of selling software licenses, local vendors can and already do build profitable businesses on selling software installation, support, and customisation services based on OSS.

Built on Open Standards

OSS has the huge benefit that it is built to conform to open standards4, i.e. developed by non-partisan international standards bodies. This makes it possible for open source and proprietary software applications which conform to these standards to interoperate and exchange data. When a single company can dictate standards by leveraging its overwhelming marketshare, the potential for integration with competing products is effectively destroyed. It is worthwhile to note that the Internet itself, a collection of computers which can talk to one another via a standard called TCP/IP, owes its existence to OSS and would cease to be viable without it.

Benefits of OSS

Governments all over the world5 are considering or have passed6 legislation encouraging the use of OSS for economic and security reasons. It can cut costs, smooth interdepartmental integration, and increase capabilities. Its diversity makes it largely impervious to viruses in contrast to the computing "monoculture" of Microsoft Windows7. Its openness ensures that it has been thoroughly scrutinised for security vulnerabilities8. It fosters local industries because it is easy to access and modify 9. It is a boon for educational institutions because it is reliable, inexpensive to administer, secure and yet is open to the curious who want to "look under the bonnet" and learn how it works10.

Support for OSS

Corporates like SAP, Sun, Intel, IBM, and Hewlett-Packard/Compaq are committed to using OSS as a core part of their business and are investing significantly in enhancing its already impressive capabilities11. Countries like Mexico, Brazil, France, China, and Germany are already considering legislation to favour OSS deployment in government institutions12, schools, and in business13. Many of us have built our businesses around OSS and see a huge potential for New Zealand to "catch the knowledge wave" by legislating support for open standards and software diversity14 - it may be our only opportunity to demonstrate to ourselves and everyone else that as a nation of innovators we can stand with the best.

Yours faithfully,

David Lane, Director, Egressive Ltd. (Christchurch)


If you would like to add your name to this list, please email Dave Lane with your details, in the format below.

  1. David McNab, former Senior Project Engineer, JNA Telecommunications Ltd. (Sydney). Presently developing OSS for human rights projects abroad (Wellington)
  2. Julian Carver, Director, Seradigm Ltd. (Christchurch)
  3. Richard Waid, Director, iOpen Technologies Ltd. (Christchurch)
  4. Brian Chatterton, Director, iOpen Technologies Ltd. (Christchurch)
  5. Michael Doerner, Director, BayPC Consulting (Tauranga)
  6. Hayden Glass, Consultant (journeyman, currently touring Siberia, formerly Auck)
  7. Andrew Groom, Aphid Net Technologies (Christchurch)
  8. Greg Driver, Director, Technology Benefits Ltd. (Wellington)
  9. Robert Sherlock, Director, SmartWork Systems Ltd. (Christchurch)
  10. Carl Cerecke, Assistant Lecturer, Dept. of Computer Science, University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  11. David Pugh, Director, Bootstrap IT Ltd. (Christchurch)
  12. Terry Paddy, Director, Bootstrap IT Ltd. (Christchurch)
  13. Dr Paul Gorman, Consultant (Auckland)
  14. Josh Campbell, Director, ZYPE - Graphical Interface Design (Christchurch)
  15. Dr Phil Driver, Director, Technology Link Ltd. (Christchurch)
  16. Patrick Milne, Consultant, Southern Cypresses (Kaiapoi)
  17. Mark Collister, Developer, BLVD Web Systems (Christchurch)
  18. Rob Connell, Director, CH Flood Modelling (Christchurch)
  19. Brian Falkingham, Partner BKT (Leeston)
  20. Dr Sandhya Samarasinghe, Senior Lecturer, Centre for Advanced Computational Solutions, Lincoln University (Lincoln)
  21. Ken Livingston, Business Analyst, On energy Ltd. (Christchurch)
  22. Yuri de Groot, Quality Improvement Specialist, On energy Ltd. (Christchurch)
  23. Chris Bayley, Director, CodeWeaver Technologies Ltd. (Christchurch)
  24. Dr Tim Bell, Head of Department, Dept. of Computer Science, University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  25. Dr Don Kulasiri, Professor, Centre for Advanced Computational Solutions (C-fACS), Lincoln University (Lincoln)
  26. Dr Euan G. Mason, Senior Lecturer, School of Forestry, University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  27. Steven Vincent, Business Systems Consultant, Computers etc (Tauranga)
  28. Wynand Verwoerd, Senior Lecturer, Applied Computing, Mathematics and Statistics Group, Lincoln University (Lincoln)
  29. Dr Ramesh Rayudu, Senior Research Engineer, Transpower NZ Ltd., Lincoln University (Lincoln)
  30. Dr Stéphane Popinet, Research scientist, NIWA (Wellington)
  31. Matthew Sherborne, Senior Software Development Engineer, NextWindow (Auckland)
  32. David Hallett, Solutions Architect, INTAZ Ltd. (Hamilton)
  33. Dr Bernhard Pfahringer, Senior Lecturer, Computer Science Deptartment, University of Waikato (Hamilton)
  34. Roger Grice (BE), Managing Director, Lateral Profiles Ltd. (Auckland)
  35. Drew Whittle, Computer Science Applied Research Centre, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  36. Cameron Kerr, Broadband Research Group, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  37. Alex King, Linuxworks (Dunedin)
  38. Anthony Ross, Information Science Student, University of Otago(Dunedin)
  39. Brian Bates, Manager, Sucuba Enterprises (Dunedin)
  40. Andrew Mitchell, Computer Science student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  41. Donovan Jones, WAN Engineer, Comnet Networks (Wellington)
  42. Jeremy Butler, Geographic Information Systems Student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  43. Stuart Rackham, Software Developer, methods: Software (Auckland)
  44. Dr John H. Hauman, Computer Science Student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  45. Dr Ralph Loader, Senior Software Engineer, Intel New Zealand (Auckland)
  46. Rob Harrowfield, Senior Technical Support Engineer, Axon Computertime (Auckland)
  47. Patrick Gade, IT Manager, World Vision New Zealand (Auckland)
  48. Irfon Jones, Geography/GIS Student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  49. Andy Elvey, analyst-programmer, CYFS (Wellington)
  50. Ewing Caldwell, Lecturer, School of Information Technology, Auckland University of Technology (Auckland)
  51. Susan Stroud, Director, TeeBow Technologies Ltd. (Wellington)
  52. Remyl Vrij, Director, Silicond@m, Knowledge Age Foundation
  53. Michael Beattie, Debian GNU/Linux Developer, Worldwide (Dunedin)
  54. Andrew Cope, Director, Evergreen Computing Ltd. (UK, formerly Auckland)
  55. Douglas Harré, South Island Manager, EdCom Network (Christchurch)
  56. Martin Wehipeihana, Zope developer, NetHomes (Wellington)
  57. Christopher Sawtell, Author (Christchurch)
  58. Kay Cao, PHD Student, Waikato University (Hamilton)
  59. Michael Pearce, Systems Programmer, Chemistry Department, University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  60. Rex Johnston, Software/Network Engineer, Software Innovations Ltd. (Christchurch)
  61. Dr Johann Schoonees, Research Engineer, Industrial Research Ltd. (Auckland)
  62. Steve Kieu, Student (Auckland)
  63. Phill Brown, Applied Science (Electronics) Student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  64. John Woffindin, Director, Xoren Internet Solutions Group (Hamilton)
  65. Richard Vowles, Borland New Zealand (Auckland)
  66. Maurice Arthur, Orthodontist (retired), Home Linux user (Northland)
  67. Chris Hellyar, Proprietor Ohmark Electronics & IT Manager Selwyn District Council. (Leeston, Canterbury)
  68. Gordon Findlay, IT Services Manager, Christchurch College of Education (Christchurch)
  69. Geoffrey Mills, Technical Manager, DataSure Management Systems Ltd. (Auckland)
  70. Kerry Milestone, Director, Orbital Nine Ltd. (Wellington)
  71. Les Ferguson, Senior Software Developer, health information systems, Auckland
  72. Greg Cockburn, Director, Performance Magic Limited (Wellington)
  73. James Doherty, Student, Home Linux user (Auckland)
  74. Richard Bain, WAN Administrator, ComNet Networks (Wellington)
  75. Ian Collins, System Manager IT (Auckland)
  76. Greig McGill, RHCE, Systems Engineer, Compel Automation Ltd. (Hamilton)
  77. Chris Hodgetts, TVNZ Sales Schedules and Development
  78. Craig Falconer, Network Administrator for Avonside Girls' High School (Christchurch)
  79. Sharon Cowling, Analyst/Programmer, SSLnz (Wellington)
  80. Craig Love, Student Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) (Christchurch)
  81. Stephen Robbins, Systems Administrator, Catalyst IT Ltd. (Wellington)
  82. Andrew McMillan, Director, Catalyst IT Ltd.; Director, Parents Centres (NZ) Inc; Debian Linux Developer (Wellington)
  83. Glen Ogilvie, Web developer (Wellington)
  84. Jeremy Naylor, Student, Whitireia Community Polytechnic (Wellington)
  85. John Davey, IT Tutor, Aoraki Polytechnic (Timaru)
  86. Ryan Macnamee, Software Developer, Datacom (Auckland)
  87. Thomas Livingstone, Contractor, Livingstone Consulting (Wellington)
  88. Dr Dale Smith, Manager, Research and Development, MetaGenetics (Rotorua)
  89. Bruce Jeffrey, Technical Director, Quik Internet (NZ) Ltd. (Auckland)
  90. Alan McNatty, Analyst/Programmer, Catalyst IT Ltd., Home Linux user (Wellington)
  91. Dennis Brown, Designer, Fairfax Business Media (Auckland)
  92. Spiro Harvey, Director, Netgeeks Ltd. (Wellington)
  93. David Lines, Director, Advanced Computer Support Ltd.. (Christchurch)
  94. Peter Thomas, General Manager, Quik Internet Christchurch (Christchurch)
  95. Tony Wicks, Senior Network Engineer, TelstraSaturn (Auckland)
  96. Mark Brennan, Management Services Executive, Westgate Port Taranaki (New Plymouth)
  97. James Tyson, Director, Moebius Systems Ltd. (Auckland)
  98. Geoff McCaughan, Senior software engineer, Holliday Group Ltd. (Christchurch)
  99. Jodi Thomson, Computer Systems Consultant, The University of Waikato Library (Hamilton)
  100. James Lindsay, Data Specialist, Vodafone NZ Ltd. (Auckland)
  101. Jamie Dobbs, Systems Engineer (Wellington)
  102. Nathan Hemmings, PC Specialist, Tait Electronics Ltd. (Christchurch)
  103. David French, Director, Prolite (HB) Ltd. (Hastings)
  104. Grant Alexander, Computing Systems Manager, PF Olsen and Company Limited
  105. Chris Sefton, Web Site Designer & PHP Programmer (open source), Brochures Online Limited (Christchurch)
  106. Vladimir Kosovac, Technical Support Manager, Spherion Group Ltd. (Auckland)
  107. David Scott, Web Consultant and University Student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  108. Jane Tarbotton, General Practitioner, Mornington Health Centre (Dunedin)
  109. Trent Mankelow, Software Engineer, Unisys NZ Ltd. (Wellington)
  110. Stephen Judd, Senior Developer, The Web Limited (Wellington)
  111. James McGlinn, Director, Moebius Systems Ltd. (Auckland)
  112. David Ritchie, Developer, The Web Limited (Wellington)
  113. Craig Mckenna, IT Systems Manager, MindzI Group Limited (Hamilton)
  114. Shay McAulay, Consultant, KPMG Consulting New Zealand Limited
  115. Peter Bennett, Director, Bencom Ltd. (Auckland)
  116. Ray Jackson, Computer Engineer, Clear Communications Ltd.
  117. Tim Haines, Director, Information Management Solutions Limited; Director, Inspiration Technology Limited (Wellington)
  118. Paul Daniel, Business Support Specialist, Serco Group NZ Ltd. (Wellington)
  119. Vinko Buzak, IT Support Specialist, QED Software Ltd. (Auckland)
  120. Andy Wheeler, Information services Manager, Presbyterian Support (East Coast)
  121. Reece Robinson, E-Business Architect (Auckland)
  122. Brian Murphy, Systems Engineer, Real Solutions Ltd. (Auckland)
  123. Dylan Reeve, Director, Evidential Communications Limited (Auckland)
  124. Stephen Lewis, Computer Science Student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  125. Eaden McKee, Internet Developer, Asterisk Ltd. Linux Specialists (Auckland)
  126. Hurricane Hunia, Information Systems Consultant, Gardiner and Parata Ltd. (Wellington)
  127. Brett Taylor, Web Designer/Developer, Freelance (Wellington)
  128. Gregor Ronald, Teaching Technology Support Consultant, IT Dept., University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  129. Alfie West, Director, Digital Dog Ltd.
  130. Peter Harrison, Director Information Technologies, Nothing But Net Limited (Auckland)
  131. Stephen Baird, Standards Analyst, Wellington City Council (Wellington)
  132. Kirk Alexander, Programmer (Dunedin)
  133. James Tolchard, IT Consultant (Christchurch)
  134. Ruth Donnelly, Standards Publisher, Wellington City Council; Linux user (non-technical type) (Wellington)
  135. Liz Reid, Computer Technician (Auckland)
  136. Aaron Leith, home GNU/Linux user (Warkworth)
  137. Jamie Norrish, Developer, The Web Ltd. (Wellington)
  138. Sam Cannell, Network Technician, Taita College
  139. Neil Fincham, Network Administrator, Integral Ltd. (Rotorua)
  140. Darryl Hamilton, Web Developer, Freelance (Auckland)
  141. Nigel Roberts, Network Engineer, TelstraSaturn (Wellington)
  142. Hamish Archer, Systems Engineering Manager, Peace Software International (Auckland)
  143. Richard Hornell, Systems Manager, Hyphen8 Ltd., (Auckland)
  144. Bob Brown, IT Consultant, Opus International Consultants Ltd. (Napier)
  145. Scott McGill, Web/Graphic Designer (Hamilton)
  146. Simon Garlick, Technical Marketing Specialist, Integrated Research Limited (Sydney)
  147. Craig Mercer, Unix Systems Administrator, Wellington City Council (Wellington)
  148. Igor Portugal, Technical Director, Asterisk Ltd. (Auckland)
  149. Nicholas Breen BInfSc, Coder, (Auckland)
  150. Tim Morgan, Cygnus (Auckland)
  151. Oliver Jones, Director & Software Engineer, Deeper Design Limited (Taupo)
  152. John McPherson, Computer Science PhD student, University of Waikato (Hamilton)
  153. Lindsay Druett, Network Engineer, University of Waikato (Hamilton)
  154. Kent Garrett, Systems admin/development, New Zealand Stock Exchange
  155. Jim Mooney, Research Analyst, Peace Software International (Auckland)
  156. Jason Persson, Software Engineer, ITB Consulting Ltd. (Auckland)
  157. Mark Little, Network Operations, IHUG (Auckland)
  158. Luke Maning Hardiman, Managing Director, Upgrade Technologies Ltd.; Managing Director, Cheetah Software Company Ltd.; Management - Linux User
  159. Andrew S Hooper, Senior Project Manager, Internet Solution Developer, Section 6 (Auckland)
  160. Alex Natautama, Consultant, AENZ Services (Auckland)
  161. Michael Hallager, Managing Director, Comsolve Networks (NZ) Limited
  162. Chris Hellberg, Technologist, Telecom N.Z. LTD. (Wellington)
  163. Glenn McLelland, Helpdesk Technician, Paradise.Net (Wellington)
  164. Brian Moyse, semi-retired, Home Linux user (Christchurch)
  165. Sue Wright, Network Engineer, Ezinet Services (Auckland)
  166. Matt Sellar, Systems Engineer, Computer Fanatics Ltd.
  167. Keith Turner, Principal, Kendal School (Christchurch)
  168. Marshall Jones, Student, Massey@Wellington (Wellington)
  169. Xris Brunton, Network Engineer, IHUG (Auckland)
  170. David Murrell, Chemistry Student, University Of Waikato (Hamilton)
  171. Robert Lye, Director, ARK RECYCLING Ltd. (Auckland)
  172. Matthias Dallmeier, Graduate Student, Department of Computer Science, University of Waikato (Hamilton)
  173. Penny Jackson, Teacher, Templeton Primary School (Christchurch)
  174. Matt Brown, Consultant (Hamilton)
  175. Bruce Parkinson, Technical Specialist, Holiday Autos (UK), formerly Sys Admin, PavTech (NZ) Ltd. (Hamilton)
  176. Tim McSweeney, Programmer, Electronic Arts (UK formerly of Auckland)
  177. David Baldwin, Product Design Engineer, Fisher and Paykel Healthcare Ltd. (Auckland)
  178. Dagan McGregor, Computer Sales/Consultancy, Ascent Technology (Wellington)
  179. Kim Shepherd, ITS Systems & Development, University of Waikato (Hamilton)
  180. David Moore, Senior Software Engineer, Intel NZ (Auckland)
  181. Dr Paul Bonnington, Senior Lecturer, Department of Maths, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  182. Chris Russell, Network Engineer (Wellington)
  183. Ian Orchard, MacOS Consultant, MacWorX (Christchurch)
  184. Serguei Loukianiouk, technical programmer, Kiwiplan (Auckland)
  185. Michael Hart, Business Systems Developments (Hamilton)
  186. Stephen Bailey, Operations Manager, PC Recycling Channel (Wellington)
  187. Elroy Liddington, Home GNU/Linux user (Hamilton)
  188. Daniel Craig, Consultant, Cognix Group (Wellington)
  189. John Plumridge, Freelance techs, T.L.C.Solutions (Gold Coast AU)
  190. Matthew Woods, Technical Analyst (Wellington)
  191. Gordon Smith, Network Operations Manager, MoreNet Ltd. (Auckland)
  192. Steve Phillips, Systems Admin and Design Engineer, Asia Online NZ Ltd. (Auckland)
  193. Randall Prentice, Database Administrator (Wellington)
  194. Mike Field, Systems Engineer, Hewlett Packard Ltd. (Wellington)
  195. James Curtis, PhD Student, Dept. Computer Science, University of Waikato (Hamilton)
  196. Mark Goldfinch, Network Engineer, TelstraSaturn Ltd. (Wellington)
  197. David Annett, Director, Annett Computer Company Ltd. (Auckland)
  198. Blair Harrison, Support Technician, Makoura College (Masterton)
  199. Dan Milward, Web Designer/Developer, Open Source Advocate (Wellington)
  200. Clint Deckard, Professional Development Facilitator, CentralNet (Waipukurau)
  201. Jarno van der Linden, PhD student, Department of Computer Science, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  202. Ann Roberts, education review officer (Wellington)
  203. Tom Robinson, Self Employed Computer Contracter, Kowhai Computing (Wellington)
  204. Rupert Currey, Network Security Specialist, Telecom (Auckland)
  205. Robert Bull, Linux User (Hamilton)
  206. Donald Gordon, Computer Science student, Victoria University (Wellington)
  207. Raymond Michael Jackson, Computing Coordinator, Department of Geography, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  208. Kelvin Andrews, Bachelor of Business Computing student, Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology (CPIT) (Christchurch)
  209. Daniel Turner, Webdesigner, Home Linux user (Auckland)
  210. Michael De Vorms, Student (Levin)
  211. Cathy lai, software developer, Canterbury District Health Board (Christchurch)
  212. Edward Minnell, Director, Evertec Solutions (Wanganui)
  213. Michael Hanson, Director, Centre for Distance Learning, Bible College of New Zealand (Auckland)
  214. Michael Haworth, Computer Science (Hons) Student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  215. Nick Rockel, Senior Engineer, Dejima Europe (London)
  216. James Spooner WAND Group, University of Waikato (Hamilton)
  217. Worik Turei Stanton, contract programmer, (Auckland)
  218. Andreas Girardet, yOPeR.cOm, Chief Security Officer
  219. Hong Chyr, RF Engineer (Wellington)
  220. Mahesh De Silva, Student, Lincoln University (Lincoln)
  221. Dave Verma - Director, i-Gate Ltd. (Wellington)
  222. Peter Watling, Developer, MetService (Christchurch)
  223. Dr Peter Gutmann, Department of Computer Science, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  224. Luke Janssen, Automotive Technician (Wellington)
  225. Karen Bould, Primary School Teacher, Ngati Toa School (Wellington)
  226. Gary Jacobson, I.T. Manager, Dalby State High (Queensland, Australia)
  227. Simon Gamble, Director, YellowTuna Networks Ltd. (Auckland)
  228. Damien Bateman, Computer Science Student, University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  229. Nick Westgate, Senior Software Engineer, Digital Jellyfish Design Ltd. (Auckland)
  230. Gareth Bradley, Student (Hamilton)
  231. Lucy Smith, Student (Hamilton)
  232. Raj Naidu, Owner of Raj Naidu Industries (Hamilton)
  233. Blake Watkins, Student (Hamilton)
  234. Anna Davies, MSc candidate (Psychology), University of Otago (Dunedin)
  235. David Bird, home linux user, concerned parent (Dunedin)
  236. Julian Eden, Consultant, VRAMM (Dunedin)
  237. JP Howard, Dunedin Linux Users Group (Dunedin)
  238. Joseph Skinner, Analyst/Programmer (Dunedin)
  239. John Jenkins, Open Source Developer, Consultant (Dunedin)
  240. Steve Cosgrove, Networking Lecturer, Whitireia Community Polytechnic (Porirua)
  241. David Hollies, Information Systems Manager, Benchmark Building Supplies Ltd. (Auckland)
  242. Vegard Bakke, Systems Engineer / Programmer, Allied Press Ltd. (Dunedin)
  243. Aaron Sinclair, Director, ThinkLab (Tauranga)
  244. Stuart Anderson (MA), Director, net.Sense Ltd. (Wellington)
  245. Cathi Maryon, Director, net.Sense Ltd. (Wellington)
  246. Nigel Somerfield, BSc (Hons), Computer Science student, Victoria University (Wellington)
  247. Brent Wood, GIS/Database consultant, NIWA (Wellington)
  248. Roger Henderson, Project Engineer, System Controls Ltd. (Auckland)
  249. Darren Kessell, Database Administrator/Programmer, Plumbing World Support Office (Palmerston North)
  250. Paul Barratt, (Auckland)
  251. Gerhard Kessell-Haak, Development Team Leader, Inform Pacific Limited (Wellington)
  252. Cameron McLeay, Hydrographic Information Systems Manager, Hydrographic Office, RNZN (Auckland)
  253. Andrew Crump, Technical Lead, ZIVO (Auckland)
  254. Chris Rigby, Senior Systems Engineer, IHUG (Auckland)
  255. Alasdair Muckart, Network Engineer (Christchurch)
  256. Michael Woodhams, Programmer, Peace Software International (Auckland)
  257. Kevin Newton, Project Management/IT Support, ANZDEC Limited (Auckland)
  258. Jamie Walker, Systems Administrator, Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  259. Jonathan Hunt, Programmer, Information Management Consultant, Telecom NZ Ltd. (Christchurch)
  260. Mike Keehan, Software Engineer, ReelTwo Ltd. (Hamilton)
  261. Jonathan Coulam, ICT Helpdesk Technician, Takapuna Grammar School (Auckland)
  262. Glenn Benge, Software and Web Developer, Benge Web Creation (Wellington)
  263. Phill Mckenna, Technical Director, Xact Computing (Paraparaumu)
  264. Iain Johnston, Assistant Admin, [employer's name withheld] (Dunedin)
  265. Lin Nah (Auckland)
  266. Thom Hooker, UNIX Systems Support, XTRA (Auckland)
  267. Giles Boutel, Developer, The Web Limited (Wellington)
  268. David Preece, Software Engineer, Freelance (Wellington)
  269. Geoffrey Platt, Director, Delta Quadrant Consultants Ltd. (Auckland)
  270. Bryan Christianson, Programming Manager, ihug (Auckland)
  271. Matt Greenfield, Editor, Sensible Erection (Auckland)
  272. George 'Mandos' Mitchinson, Technical Services Manager Asiaonline
  273. Ricard Kelly, Security Consultant, Intrical Ltd. (Auckland)
  274. David McNeill, Consultant, McNeill Computers Ltd. (Auckland)
  275. Tom Atkinson, Production Designer, Magnet Design Ltd. (Auckland)
  276. Bryce A. Coad, CTO, Zombie Internet (NZ) Ltd. (Auckland)
  277. Lee Middleton, PhD candidate, Dept of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  278. Sylvia Wong, PhD student, Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  279. Ralph Wahrlich, UNIX Systems Manager, School of Earth Sciences, Victoria Univeristy of Wellington (Wellington)
  280. Thomas Matysik, Senior Network Engineer, Zombie Linux (NZ) Ltd. (Auckland)
  281. Bart Kindt, Director, Network Operation, The Internet Group Limited (Auckland)
  282. David Rush, Web Developer (Wellington)
  283. Lincoln Reid, Systems Engineer, LinuxNet (Wellington)
  284. Roger De Salis, Telecom NZ Account Manager for Cisco Systems (Wellington)
  285. David Stewart, PHD Student, Victoria University of Wellington (Wellington)
  286. David Yuen, PhD Student, Dept. of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  287. Patrick Cain, IT Consultant, Microdrive IT Ltd. (London, UK formerly of Wellington)
  288. Fran McGowan, MIS Manager, Mobile Computing (Nelson)
  289. Stephen Laing, 2nd Year IT Student, UNITEC Institute of Technology (Auckland)
  290. Ian W Halliday, Risk Analyst, [employer's name withheld] (Wellington)
  291. Michael Wanless, Computing Student, National College of Multimedia and Technology (Auckland)
  292. Peter Woolley, Database Consultant (Auckland)
  293. Alasdair Mawdsley, Information Engineering Student, Massey University Albany (Auckland)
  294. Matthew Poole, Network Engineer, CallPlus Ltd (Auckland)
  295. Melanie French, Director, Webbage Ltd (Auckland)
  296. Ross Simmonds, Cargo Systems Analyst, Port Nelson Ltd. (Nelson)
  297. Stephen Douglass, Programme consultant, Auckland College of Education (Auckland)
  298. Campbell MacDuff, Design Director, NeoGine Communication Design Ltd. (Wellington)
  299. Brad Sowden, PhD student, Radio Systems Group, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  300. Andrew J. Stephen, Team Leader, Network Operations, New Zealand Post (Wellington)
  301. Matthew Hobbs, Managing Director, Quicksilver Internet
  302. Joe Dydowicz, Contract Perl Programmer/Linux Specialist, Dynasoft New Zealand
  303. Simon Story, Politics and IT student, Wellington
  304. Shane Thomson, Technical Consultant, Department of Geography, University of Auckland (Auckland)
  305. Dave Cole, IT Student (Wellington)
  306. Volker Kuhlmann, PhD student, Electrical Engineering, University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  307. David Warriner, 1st Year Information Engineering Student, Massey University Albany (Auckland)
  308. Laurie Fleming, Senior Consultant/Director, Sysware Consulting Group Ltd
  309. Julian Bullock, Systems Architect, Skymast (Brisbane)
  310. Xav Paice, Systems Engineer, Integral Technology Group (Auckland)
  311. Ratan Prakash, Director/Network Consultant, BCS Computer Solutions Ltd (Auckland)
  312. Natalie Loh, Network Consultant, Infinity Solutions Ltd. (Wellington)
  313. Dorenda Britten, Director, designindustry Ltd. (Christchurch)
  314. Werner Schmidt, System Administrator/Computer Services Manager, Statistics Department, Auckland University (Auckland)
  315. Richard Mansfield, Research Assistant, Computer Science, Victoria University (Wellington)
  316. Daniel Wilton, Network Analyst, New Zealand Post (Wellington)
  317. Michael Lee, Director, (Auckland)
  318. Ross George, Consultant (Auckland)
  319. Tim Holding, IT Student, Takapuna Grammar School
  320. James Vize, Software Developer, GDC Communications (Auckland)
  321. Martin Paulo, Software Developer (Wellington)
  322. Zane Gilmore,Programmer/Analyst University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  323. Paul MacDonald, GIS consultant and *nix admin, (Wellington)
  324. Andrew Rundle, IT Support-Studio Clemenger BBDO (Wellington)
  325. Bjorn Nilsen, Systems Consultant, Manux Solutions Ltd. (Christchurch)
  326. Simon Werner, BSc (Hons) Student in Phsyics, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  327. Michael JasonSmith, Computer Science PhD Student, University of Canterbury (Christchurch)
  328. Mark Munro, Unix Systems Administrator, Actrix Networks Limited (Wellington)
  329. Julian Matson, manager (Port Chalmers)
  330. Andy Linton, IP Engineer, Lionra (Wellington)
  331. Chris Pearce, Computer Science Student, University of Otago (Dunedin)
  332. Andrew Russell, IT Contractor & Director, Mindware Limited (Wellington)
  333. Karl Beckert, Student of Law/Computer Science, Victoria University (Wellington)
  334. Michael Stevens, Data Management Specialist, MS&A. (Porirua)
  335. Nigel Campbell, Developer, Datacom Systems Ltd. (Auckland)
  336. Guy Brown, Software Engineer, Sungard Treasury Systems (Christchurch)
  337. Wayne Leong, Programmer for a major financial instutition (Rimutaka electorate)
  338. James Pluck, Network Analyst, Home Linux User (Hamilton)
  339. Duncan Bayne, Software Developer, [employer's name withheld] (Auckland)
  340. Waylon Kenning, Chief Web designer, Taumarunui High School (Taumarunui)
  341. Brendan Thompson, Manager, Advance Computer Tech (North Otago)
  342. Roy Purvis ME, engineer, Pick Professionals (Auckland)
  343. Steven Rose, Systems Developer, Datacom Systems Ltd. (Wellington)
  344. Keith Smith, Technical Manager, CompuSmiths Ltd (Auckland
  345. Lesley Walker, Systems Engineer, EDS (Wellington)
  346. Steven Jones, system administrator, EDS (Wellington)
  347. David Hall, Tutor in computer programming, Victoria University (Wellington)
  348. Steve Withers, Asia / Pacific Client Solution Manager, AT&T Business Services
  349. Rick Reiter, TIC Computing, Colenso High School (Napier)
  350. Mark Tsikanovski, programmer, EDS (NZ) Ltd. (Wellington)
  351. Ferdie Ang, Systems Engineer, EDS (Wellington)
  352. Martin D Kealey, Technical Director, Signature Internet Group Ltd. (Auckland)
  353. Simon Geard, Developer, Peace Software International (Auckland)


N.B. the New York Times requires free "registration" before articles (see below) can be viewed.

  1. "The Land of Monopolies" - sourced from the New York Times, see:
  2. For the official definition of "open source," please see:
  3. E-Government Note:
    Tony Blair's Labour government in the UK learned the hard way what happens when a monopolistic vendor is allowed to develop the government's public interface on the Internet (please consider this with regard to NZ's "e-government" initiative!):
    1. before -
    2. after -
    The site for those coordinating the development of an open/vendor neutral e-businesses infrastructure:
  4. For an article on the benefits of open standards-based file formats from Sun CEO Scott McNealy, see:,3201,NAV65-1797_STO64689,00.html2C00.html
    Examples of open standards bodies are the Linux Standards Base (see and the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) (see (Thanks to Julian Carver for these links)
  5. The European Commission's Interchange of Data between Administrations (IDA) organisation has made available (in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) and MS Word formats (DOC)) a comprehensive range of documents related to OSS use in the public sector at:
    (thanks to Brian Chatterton for this link)
    For a list of countries considering legislation to support OSS see:
    and this is a link to the European Commission community research program (fifth framework program) which manages part of the science budget (information society technologies) for the European Union including research grants, international events, etc.: (thanks to Stéphane Popinet for this link)
  6. On 21 November, the French Agency for e-Government (ATICA) announced that they would be in charge of selecting open standards to be enforced all over public administrations in order to guarantee full interoperability. see:
  7. For a report on the impact of viruses on business and world economies, see: (Ed. Note: unfortunately, cnnfn have removed this page...)
    The Gartner Group recently recommended that anyone using Microsoft's IIS webserver software switch a different platform, specifically recommending the open source Apache webserver, which also happens to be the marketleading webserver software. For the article, see:
    Security is really a function of code quality - sloppy code leads to security exploits and usability issues. Here's what Jakob Nielsen has to say on the subject:
    (thanks to Jonathan Hunt for this link)
  8. A version of Linux has been developed by the NSA as the new platform for the storage of secret data in the US:
  9. "New Economy" based on OSS - sourced from New York Times:
  10. For a good article on why OSS should be used in schools, please see:
    For a diverse range of documents related to OSS and education, see
  11. Major corporate support for Linux and OSS:
  12. Government institutions are already seeing significant benefits from using OSS:
    The German government is now rethinking its use of computers and backing open source software development:,,6_408271,00.html
    The UK government are considering alternatives to Microsoft Windows on nearly 500,000 government PCs due to escalating license costs and concerns about vendor dependence:
  13. Because it needs security and reliability, the financial sector is taking a lead in adopting OSS:,11011,2805343,00.html
  14. For a compelling article on NZ's potential to benefit from the use of open source technologies, please see this article from the New Zealand Herald (on one line):
This document was developed and refined by the readers of the New Zealand Open Source mailing list using the "open source" method of consultation. It is written to conform to open standards and composed with 100% open source tools and served by a 100% open source software. Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds, the primary developer of the Linux kernel.

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