Checkbook NYC advances civic open source

planning for open source release in government

New York City Comptroller John Liu is about to do something we need to see more often in government. This week, his office is open sourcing the code behind Checkbook NYC, the citywide financial transparency site—but the open-sourcing itself is not what I'm referring to. After all, lots of governments open source code these days.

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Open Source for America asks U.S. government to "Free the Code"

Open Source for America logo

Open Source for America launched a petition Thursday to "Free the Code," an effort to encourage the U.S. federal government to release custom-developed, taxpayer-funded software as open source by default.

"Free the Code is an initiative to start a national conversation on taxpayer investments in software and information technology," said John Scott, co-chair of Open Source for America's steering committee. "Specifically, we’re interested in how publicly-funded software code developed by the government, which isn’t already covered by a proprietary license, should be made available to the wider public."

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Poll: Should information generated from government funded projects be publicly available?

Should any and all information generated with government funding be publicly ava

What do you think? Does the information paid for by taxes in a democracy belong to the people who helped pay for it? Or maybe governments have a right to keep secrets and an interest in doing so--everything can't be open. » Read more


Open source is illegal?

Open source is illegal?
Really?  Sadly, this isn't merely a provocative title, but rather is a real issue in some countries. The Slovak Republic is one of the few countries without localized Creative Commons licenses. Slovak copyright law does not consider open licenses such as CC or the GPL valid, because Slovak law requires a signed contract between both the copyright holder and the licensee. On the bright side, this is slowly changing - the Slovak Ministry of Culture has promised to update and reform the Copyright Act later this year.

Open Source for America: Nominate an individual or project for an OSFA award

Open Source for America logo

Open Source for America recently celebrated its second anniversary, and plans to recognize the individuals, projects, and deployments that support its mission to encourage free and open source software adoption in the US government. Nominate an individual or project for an award. The categories and last years winners are listed below. » Read more