In less than 1.5 years the Venezuelan governement went from zero, creating a partnership with a Chinese company, to mass production of affordable desktop and laptop computers running free software (full specs here), with a big price difference compared to other local offerings, up to 40%! This is less than 3 years after announcing a massive move to free software in all government agencies.
I’ ve blogged before about the action in Venezuela, but this blows my mind. Well, at least as much as the Guadalinex project and their 400 000 desktops deployment.
Although they remain vague in the choice of operating systems, all the annoucements about the « Bolivarian » Computers launch do mention they will run Gnu/Linux and » be compatible » with Windows. Even production is local. And what capacity do they have ? 150K units a year, that’ s right 150 000 systems every year. In case you haven’t noticed, Ecuador and Cuba have recently announced free, open-source software policies to replace existing IT operations agressively. Coincidence ? I think not.
Scrolling down to the very last question in their FAQ, we can see:
De manera consecuente con la misión de alcanzar la Independencia Tecnológica de la Nación, VIT promueve el empleo del Software Libre, por lo que los equipos son entregados a solicitud del cliente con sistema operativo bajo ambiente Linux, siendo compatibles con Knoppix, Kubuntu, Ubuntu, Debian y otros.
which translates to
Followin our mission to reach Technological Independency of our Nation, VIT promotes the use of Free Software, so the systems are delivered to customers with Linux operating systems, compatible with Knoppix, Kubuntu, Ubuntu, Debian and others.
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