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25 June 2013, 12:14

City of Genoa to increase use of open source

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The Italian Municipality of Genoa has announced that it is to increase its use of free and open source software, hoping to save €100,000 a year according to a reportItalian language link on Italian news site Lettera 43. In a documentDirect downloadItalian language link dated 14 June 2013, the municipality states that its position is changing, from one in which open source software is treated on an equal basis to proprietary software, to one which specifically favours open source software and open standards. In particular, following the recommendations of the EU, the Open Document Format (ODF) will be used for electronic documents, specifically to ensure the future accessibility of those documents.

The city's IT department is developing e-learning modules, where possible using freeware or open source software, in order to train large numbers of employees in the new systems. The document goes on to list certain applications that will replace existing proprietary software: Gimp as an alternative to Photoshop, 7zip as an alternative to Winzip, and PDFCreator, for creating PDF files. Also mentioned are Zimbra, Quantum GIS, Kosmo, Postgres and PostGIS. These are all being introduced following testing.

PCs will be reused by placing them in schools and by creating Linux-based kiosk workstations to allow employees remote access to the central system. The document concludes by stating that the city will continue to assess and test the use of ODF documents and will start training courses hoped at bringing about a "cultural change", leading to the use of open source in further areas.

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