Some days ago we talked about that it’s not possible to apply the Smart City concept, the intelligent city concept, to that cities where their public managers apply policies and projects that make their technological infrastructures, their information systems, are dependent on sole providers. Unfortunately it happens frequently and it jeopardizes the technological future of the cities.
Stressing in that issue about the Smart Cities there’s another aspect that we would like to stand out related to the proprietary software opposite to open source solutions. That’s the direct relationship between the proprietary products implementation and the generation of technological inequality between towns in a different economical level.
Everybody consider that license expenses for implementing and maintaining a geomatics platform that allows to manage geographic information is only accessible for a few city councils. A minimum percentage of the total of municipalities of any country.
Using proprietary software we are pushing most of the towns of a country into the background. This discrimination of the modernization of the city councils management causes that there’s only a few modernity examples, enough to fill in some newspaper headlines. It also causes that we condemn the rest to a digital exclusion. It doesn’t seem to be the “most smart” and more intelligent policies.
If the digital opening is mainly referring to the possibilities to convert the circulating information into relevant knowledge, betting on free solutions, based on shared knowledge, without license expenses and access limitations, is the only possibility for all the cities and towns in a country to apply the technology in order to improve their management.
And everything without entering in the own dynamics of the open source software, where the possibilities to collaborate between different municipalities are open to deal with joint developments that can be shared without any limitations.
And an intelligent country won’t be these one that has first and second class cities, intelligent and “not as much intelligent”, but the country who bets on an equality in technological opportunities for all the municipalities, and besides allows them to share and improve in a joint way.