U.S Government’s take on FOSS (Free and Open Source Software)




May 29, 2020

Free software is software that respects your freedom.

This is a running blog on how the U.S government uses and advocates Free and Open Source Software.

The US Department of Defence’s (DoD) OSS FAQ states, “continuous and broad peer-review, enabled by publicly available source code, improves software reliability and security through the identification and elimination of defects that might otherwise go unrecognized”.

From the DoD Software Acquisition and Practices (SWAP) study: “DoD should use open source when possible to speed development and deployment and leverage the work of others”.

Digital Service Playbook was developed by U.S Digital Service and outlines several best practices from the private sector that can help the Government build effective digital services.

Federal Source Code Policy: “requires agencies, when commissioning new custom software, to release at least 20 percent of new custom-developed code as Open Source Software (OSS)”.

Here are a few agencies that have embraced the Federal Source Code Policy: