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­S Gov't Agencies Embrace Collaborative Software Development

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Open source code


Several U.S. federal agencies are embracing the collaborative model of open source software development and are releasing code back to the general public.

The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) both host software projects on GitHub, a software collaboration Web site based on the open source Git version control system. DoD's Dan Risacher says open source software has been a "transformative force" for the department. Risacher says DoD has been looking for ways to collaborate with other developers. "We're starting to see this aperture open within the government recognizing this model of collaborative development is really powerful," he says.

CFPB has three projects hosted on GitHub, and the agency's open source policy releases any software developed in house to the public domain, notes CFPB CIO Chris Willey. "This is sort of our first toe in the water into how can we make the whole process of rule-writing more accessible to people," he says.

From IDG News Service
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