The DoD's DISA (Defense Information Systems Agency) has signed a 25,000 seat license agreement with Sun Microsystems for StarOffice, a multi-platform office productivity suite very familiar to Linux and OS/2 users.
Lt. Col. William C. Hoppe, chief engineer of DISA's Global Command and Control System stated that, "We evaluated StarOffice as best satisfying our requirement to operate an open office productivity suite globally on multiple platforms [including Linux, Solaris and Windows]".
While a solid endorsement for Sun's StarOffice, this is not yet a loss for Microsoft Office, because MS Office couldn't possibly meet DISA's requirements. On the other hand, this is one more sizable chunk of desktops that will be running StarOffice.
Ford Motor Company in Europe has stated they will be leaving the Windows environment, primarily for Linux, and it is probable they too will chose StarOffice.
One might ask why more government agencies are not shifting to StarOffice and other free/nearly free alternatives instead of spending hundreds of millions of taxpayer's hard earned dollars with a company that has been convicted of illegal conduct.
The next major revision of StarOffice will be 6.0, to be released in early 2002. We expect it will do away with the "StarOffice desktop", a feature not well liked by many StarOffice users, and will show only the currently selected modules, much like Microsoft Office.
- Andrew Grygus
- Automation Access
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