Open source provides autonomy from Microsoft - IBM exec

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Open source is a way of becoming independent from Microsoft's (Nasdaq: MSFT) operational systems and software, IBM (NYSE: IBM) Brazil's new technologies manager, Cezar Taurion, told BNamericas.

"It's important to be independent from Microsoft," Taurion said. "Microsoft is a competitor, so we encourage open source use by sponsoring communities like Linux and Apache."

There is a clear trend in the adoption of open source in Latin America, led by governments. In the region, countries like Brazil, Venezuela and Mexico have established the use of open source to serve the public sector, he noted.

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According to the expert, Brazil is a leader in terms of open source adoption because the government promotes its use. "They use the free software to integrate and collaborate with existing systems," Taurion said. The executive added that not only the government, but also companies such as Petrobras and Banco do Brasil encourage and promote the use of the Firefox web browser instead of Internet Explorer, as well as Linux applications and JBOSS - an open source middleware application.

Other countries that are using open source are Venezuela, with the government as its main user, as well as Argentina, one of the first countries in the region to adopt Linux, Taurion said.

"Then we have Ecuador, with the use of Linux for public administration, as well as Peru."

Cuba is iconic in its use and adoption of open source, Taurion said. "They created a Linux distribution network, as they have had problems using US software, so they use Linux. I think that one-third of computers in Cuba run on Linux."


According to the executive, open source is also being implemented in cloud computing, such as the case with virtualization - a key step to the cloud.

But regardless of all the hype around cloud computing, adoption is still in its "infancy," Taurion said, as people are not using cloud computing on a large scale "but at the beginning of the adoption curve."

The executive expects that in the next few years, cloud computing will be widely used, with open source at the forefront.

"For example, Linux is the base for Amazon, as well as for Google. So as you can see, open source has a strong position in cloud computing," he said.