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Free Government Information (FGI) is a place for initiating dialogue and building consensus among the various players (libraries, government agencies, non-profit organizations, researchers, journalists, etc.) who have a stake in the preservation of and perpetual free access to government information. FGI promotes free government information through collaboration, education, advocacy and research.

Massachusetts willl phase out Microsoft Office

Massachusetts government agencies will adopt nonproprietary open document file formats and will phase out the use of Microsoft’s Office productivity suite by January 1, 2007. More ..

In other news, the World Bank recently released a report called Roadmap for Open ICT ecosystems written by the Open ePolicy Group at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society. The report recommends the adoption of a “open ICT ecosystem” which will allow for inter-operability across diverse architectures, is user centric, collaborative, sustainable and flexible.

What does this have to do with government information? These items show that governments are beginning to recognize the benefits of adopting open source sofware and open file formats. Open file formats would allow libraries more flexiblity to use and reuse information.

In addition, if GPO would advocate the adoption of open formats to federal agencies it would make FDsys more flexible and sustainable, and allow GPO to easily share government information with libraries and other users.

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