[gnome-cy] Windows in Welsh, at public expense?

On Tuesday this week, there was a meeting of the Advisory Panel for ICT.  This 
was set up by Jane Davidson to keep a watching brief on ICT in schools (ie 16 
and under - ELWA deals with 16+).  

One item at the meeting was a presentation by Steven Uden of Microsoft.  MS 
had approached the Assembly suggesting that it join MS' Partners in Learning 
programme, under which MS would donate �350m of licenses to the schools 
sector.  Only about 10% of schools will benefit from this, and the meeting 
was asked to decide on how this donation should be distributed (in the event, 
they came to no conclusion).  

During the meeting, Mr Uden noted that MS had now recognised that Welsh was an 
official language, and that as a result it intended to offer all OS versions, 
along with MS Office, in Welsh within two years.

However, it is my understanding that MS is not going to pay for this 
conversion itself.  Apparently, an application has been made to Bwrdd yr 
Iaith for funding to do the translations.

I make no comment on the above, but I thought I would post to this list first 
(if there's anyone still alive on it) before bruiting it about a bit more.

A number of questions are raised:

- Is it possible to get access to this Panel to make a presentation on the 
benefits of FLOSS?  Preferably this would be supported by case-studies such 
as the use Cardiff is making of Linux.  

- Has anyone (eg Alan) in fact already had any contact with this Panel, or do 
they know of members, etc?

- Is it an appropriate use of public money to fund a translation of 
proprietary software for a rich foreign multinational when there are 
alternatives available?

- If such funding is being offered, will it be offered on a pro rata basis to 
non-proprietary projects?  If not, why not?

- What is the total sum of money at stake, and who will be doing the work?

- What is the ongoing cost of keeping in step with any changes that may be 
made to the proprietary software?  Has MS been asked to contract access to 
this in perpetuity?  If not, why not?

I have no objection at all to a Welsh version of Windows - so much the better 
for Welsh.  But I do object to it being funded by someone other than MS, and 
I'm prepared to spend a fair bit of time raising some noise about this.

Also, is it not about time we get our act together and get some sort of formal 
Free Software Group off the ground?  Without such a group we cannot comment 
properly on anything, lobby, etc.  This must be about the third time I've 
raised this, but what the heck, if nobody on this list is interested, I'll do 
it myself ......


Best wishes

Kevin Donnelly

www.kyfieithu.co.uk - Meddalwedd Rydd yn Gymraeg

gnome-cy mailing list
gnome-cy pengwyn linux org uk

[Date Prev][Date Next]   [Thread Prev][Thread Next]   [Thread Index] [Date Index] [Author Index]