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[Fsfe-uk] QnetiQ study

From: Tom Coady
Subject: [Fsfe-uk] QnetiQ study
Date: Sat, 23 Aug 2003 10:39:43 +0100
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I assume many of you have seen http://www.ogc.gov.uk/embedded_object.asp?docid=1000435 , a pdf of the conclusions of a study commissioned to evaluate OSS in government procurement. My eyesight is not too good today (cataracts will be removed soon hopefully) so I have not gone through the whole 76 pages but the conclusions on page 32 show what we are up against, albeit of a completely FUDish nature:

The following conclusions are drawn from a review by the analysis team of the findings of the case study organisation implementations, as detailed in the completed questionnaires and documented in
the case study reports included in the Appendices (A-D).
1. The OSS implementation arena we concentrated on in these case studies (desktop software) is immature, and this immaturity affected the size and scale of implementations that were included in this study. Such a small study set has had an impact upon the conclusions that can be drawn,
and therefore our conclusions should be seen as indicative only.
2. The 'closed-shop' nature of the OSS community represented a barrier to the independent uptake of OSS solutions. User perception was the main factor here, with little quantifiable evidence to support it. However, the result was that implementation assistance was widely used, typically in
the form of contractors and consultants.
3. There is no single consistent implementation control and management methodology being operated by the case studies included in this report. Each operated their own methodology, typically based around the experience of those taking management control of the
4. None of the case study organisations knew of a recognised implementation methodology that
they could use.
5. The independent methodologies operated all contain, to a lesser or greater extent, characteristics of a formal methodology. However, they are all also missing some of the characteristics of a formal methodology, and these omissions led to a lack of recognised control of the
6. Lessons can be learnt from the good and bad experiences of the case studies, and these have been drawn together to create the list of proposed methodology characteristics shown. 7. A number of the characteristics of the OSS implementations reviewed are consistent with the characteristics that would be evident in any other software implementation. The maturity of OSS appears to be such that implementation methodologies associated with it have matured accordingly. The 'black magic' aspect of open source implementations has all but disappeared. 8. Further case studies should be undertaken to generate implementation-type specific control and
management methodologies.

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