What Chopra offers open source

What Chopra offers open source

Summary: Chopra's most relevant experience to open source is his work on rural broadband. There he worked to give private WiMAX operators access to government-owned radio towers. He also gave local governments a toolkit for evaluating broadband technology and funding it.

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New federal CTO Aneesh Chopra is not an open source executive. He's not a programmer, either. And he has no political fingerprints on the open source-proprietary divide.

What he has is practical experience shepherding projects through a government bureaucracy. He had been state technology officer for Virginia. He understands the buzzwords (above), he is a genuine tech tech enthusiast, and Tim O'Reilly loves the pick.

TechCrunch went with the headline "Obama Spurns Silicon Valley" but how many quality entrepreneurs there really want the hassle of a government job? And how relevant is business experience to this job anyway?

Not that Chopra lacks it. Before taking the Virginia job, he got his ticket punched as a venture capitalist, as a manager of a tech incubator, and as an advocate for health IT.

Perhaps Chopra's most relevant experience to open source is his work on rural broadband under Virginia Governor (and now Democratic National Committee head) Tim Kaine. There he worked to give private WiMAX operators access to government-owned radio towers. He also gave local governments a toolkit for evaluating broadband technology and funding it.

All the official statements from folks like John Doerr and Eric Schmidt look good. It's seems Chopra will give open source a fair chance, that he supports open standards, and for those who believe in open source that's all it needs.

Topics: Open Source, Broadband, Government, Government US, Networking

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13 comments
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  • Cool as long as the wind blows favorably

    A good beginning!

    Corporations are proven to have no feelings or real benefit toward customers or employees ([i]Note:[/i] Enron, ad infinitum), and have only one purpose: Their balance sheets' bottom lines.

    Governments benefit special interest groups over citizens ([i]Note:[/i] Innumerable historical evidences).

    Everyone needs income to survive, but not by stealing from The People! I am rooting for the freedom of users through open source.

    Open source now has an open platform and must prove itself. We will watch and see...
    Isocrates
    • Motivations

      Many companies find that doing right by
      consumers helps their bottom line. Many in
      government (in both parties) have proven that
      good government can be popular. There are many,
      many examples of both over the years.

      What we need to do is as voters and as consumers
      is all we can to make certain incentives skew
      toward better business practice and better
      government, that we don't let ourselves be lost
      in the weeds of habit, monopoly or ideology.

      I'm skeptical of all claims, but I try hard to
      avoid cynicism.
      DanaBlankenhorn
      • Experience, not opinion

        My words represent not opinions but experiences of relatives, friends, and myself.
        Isocrates
        • Your words mean nothing

          And neither does your experience, because you
          obviously have none when it comes to running a
          business, or any concept of what 'fiduciary
          responsibility' is.
          Spiritusindomit@...
      • Cynicism

        Your response to me and others regarding the Obama birth certificate disproves your claim to avoiding cynicism.
        Isocrates
      • Please provide proof for your claims. nt

        nt
        Isocrates
      • Pro Apple

        His record shows that he's quite pro Apple, which cuts two ways:
        1) He may prefer Apple solutions over FOSS, hurting us, or
        2) He may support open standards, helping our position.
        His previous iTunes / iPhone initiatives definitely fall into the first category, but I'm willing to wait and see before I judge.
        daengbo
      • Good Government May be Popular

        But since 2008 it's been proven that awful government can be popular too. If your population is stupid and infantile enough, any kind of totalitarian government will be popular, provided it will take responsibility for their lives away from them along with the authority the stupid and infantile population doesn't want anyway.

        "What we need to do is as voters and as consumers
        is all we can to make certain incentives skew
        toward better business practice and better
        government, that we don't let ourselves be lost
        in the weeds of habit, monopoly or ideology."

        Nonsense. This is "controlled economy" bs. Better business practices are those which make the business money, and should be entirely up to the business owners or stockholders, with the success being measured in dollars and cents. Better government practices are those which limit what the government does to the bare minimum necessary to keep the country intact (defense leaps to mind.)

        The greatest evils of the U.S. government have been born of the notion that the federal government has been granted the authority to decide the direction of our economy or the ways in which individuals live their lives.

        The most glaring examples of this are the ridiculous tobacco and gasoline taxes and the seatbelt laws. You smoke, the federal government decides that smokers are icky, so they punish people who smoke. You drive a car, the government decides it's not a good idea to have a freely mobile populace, so they punish you for driving with a tax. The insurance companies don't like actually having to pay off when the gamblers the government forces to be their victims file a claim, so the government punishes those who decide that seatbelts are inconvenient or dangerous (doesn't matter whether the individual is right or wrong... it's his body, he should get the "choice"... the government is NEVER wiser than the citizen.)

        There is no need for a federal CTO. The government's involvement in the economy should begin and end with ensuring that each State recognizes the papers and proceedings of other States, and do not attempt to inhibit free trade between the States. Everything else should be left up to the private sector.
        hiraghm@...
  • And What About The H-1Bs?

    Who cares what he thinks about Open Source. The question is "what happened to all the non-Indians in I.T."?

    3-4 million American I.T. workers have been displaced by the likes of Chopra and his cronies operating the bodyshops, flooding government I.T. jobs with H-1Bs and L-1s, and exploiting indentured servants from India - the so-called "guest workers" that for some reason refuse to leave.

    Articles like this make me want to vomit. What, everybody in I.T. has to be Hindu or of Indian decent? Americans invented the software industry, but suddenly we're an inferior race that needs to be purged out of I.T.?
    KevinFlanagan
    • Welcome to the new Europe - may God help us...

      NOBama!
      US Is ! Europe-ThankGod!
    • (+) 1

      We have much biggest issues than whether or not he
      gives Ubuntu a shot. This is certainly one of
      them.
      Spiritusindomit@...
  • Hopefully it will mean he'll look at things objectively.

    Open Source is a massive vaguery. Microsoft has open
    source products, as do novell, sun and IBM. Yet at the
    same time, they're all considered to large proprietary
    companies.

    I wish you'd stop using vague labels and just say free
    software, we know that's what you mean.
    Spiritusindomit@...
  • RE: What Chopra offers open source

    Smart dude.
    deowll