Free Software for Government "Servants"

I am a fanboy for free and open source software, partly because I'm cheap and partly because I am fascinated by the phenomenon of peaceful community productivity.  In fact I'm writing this in Ubuntu Linux right now, and as I've mentioned before, I've become quite a devotee. 

I had a dream last night that I was working on some important project and had found some amazing gem of free software.  However, I couldn't save anything to PDF, which I desperately needed for some reason, unless I was a Canadian citizen.  Crazy huh?  Well it gets better.  I concocted an elaborate scheme to pretend to be a Canadian student studying abroad in the States and thereby receive a free copy of the software.  A majority of the time spent in the dream consisted of an elaborate series of difficult question from the software vendor, intended to establish my citizenship.  They were very difficult, and I didn't succeed in acquiring the PDF plugin before waking. 

I know what you are saying, "What a bizarre and irrelevant story!  Where is he going?"  Well, apparently my sleeping brain aspires to write for Law & Order, because this tail was ripped from the headlines.  At work yesterday I was looking for some free software to do some meshing for finite element analysis of the spine.  I found several software packages that seemed to have been developed as part of some NASA program.  These were very promising leads, but as I dug deeper I found that some of the software was free to government employees, agencies and contractors only.  Surprise, surprise I am not a government employee, but the way I see it, I'm a government employer!  Is it not bad enough that I had my money confiscated against my will to fund the project from which this software emanated?  And now I come to find out that the only thing that would entitle me to free access is to be employed by some other government agency.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Recent Posts