Home of The Tiny Guide to Helps Users Find Open Source Alternatives

February 5th, 2007 Benjamin Horst (“Open Source as Alternative”) helps computer users find the open source alternatives to proprietary software programs they already know. Enter the name of the proprietary software, and OSAlt lists the best FOSS equivalents.

It also displays the top ten most requested apps on both the Open Source and proprietary sides, for quick reference. Overall, a handy tool.

Educators Ignoring MS Vista

February 3rd, 2007 Benjamin Horst

Solveig explains why MS Vista is being ignored by educators. No surprise, really: the high cost, upgrade headaches, and lack of compelling features form the biggest trifecta since George W. Bush’s (audio plays at this link).

Solveig writes, “One public organization with 3,000 employees is saving 2.8 million dollars over the next six years, just by switching to That’s a lot of money.”

She also quotes a piece by Wesley Fryer that delves into the same questions and concludes that Mac OS X or Linux, running, provide better value propositions.

“Earth PCs” with OpenOffice

February 2nd, 2007 Benjamin Horst

At the intersection of environmental sustainability (via low electricity consumption), and economic/political sustainability (via support of open source software), Tech Networks of Boston has introduced green PCs that offer low power consumption and preinstalled.

While smaller OEMs seem to be offering OpenOffice more and more frequently, we’re still waiting on the big ones (in the USA anyway), to catch up with the program. OEM pre-installation has an enormous impact on marketshare and could help to make OOo the default choice, if and when it occurs.

The Earth PCs offered by Tech Networks have the additional advantage of greater energy efficiency, which has been a feature of Macs for years, but may now start to catch on more broadly across the PC sector.

Italy Adopts OpenDocument as National Standard

February 1st, 2007 Benjamin Horst

Another huge economy and member of the EU has jumped onboard with open standards: Italy has adopted OpenDocument as a national standard.

The formal announcement is here, if you can read Italian.

Among the press, Bob Sutor, Erwin Tenhumberg and the Open Malaysia Blog also mention this news.

Jeff Kaplan predicted Italy’s move in the middle of last year.