Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Linux Gets Hawaii's Records House in Order

Filed under
Linux

Lester Nakamura tries to pride himself on always keeping an open mind. But when he went searching for a long-term solution to the state of Hawaii's bookkeeping needs, Nakamura said he quickly concluded that an open-source system was the only choice.

Up to that time-in 2002-the state's Department of Commerce & Consumer Affairs had labored under a financial analysis program called FAMIS (Family Accounting and Management Information System)-a rickety COBOL application that could generate only a fixed set of budgetary reports, which were updated monthly and then printed out for state officials for review.

Reports routinely took weeks to assemble. If anyone requested a nonstandard report, a COBOL programmer had to write a new program to generate it.

In a state that prides itself for service and hospitality, "this was not a user-friendly system," said Nakamura, administrator for Hawaii's Information and Communication Services Division, in Honolulu.

In 2002, exasperated state officials turned to the Linux operating system to change that. They wanted all budget and expenditure data in one data mart, with a front-end application that lets users download data to their PCs and crunch numbers as they see fit.

Moreover, they did not want to shackle themselves for another decade or so to a proprietary system such as FAMIS. An open-source platform would offer stability yet still evolve with the state's needs.

"We wanted to use as much of the resources as we already had in place, and where we had to buy infrastructure we wanted it to be as economical as possible," said Wayne Sasaki, a branch manager in the Department of Accounting and General Services who worked on the project with Nakamura. "So we started talking about Linux. The goal with Linux was cost."

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

Tunir 0.13 is released and one year of development

I have started Tunir on Jan 12 2015, means it got more than one year of development history. At the beginning it was just a project to help me out with Fedora Cloud image testing. But it grew to a point where it is being used as the Autocloud backend to test Fedora Cloud, and Vagrant images. We will soon start testing the Fedora AMI(s) too using the same. Within this one year, there were total 7 contributors to the project. In total we are around 1k lines of Python code. I am personally using Tunir for various other projects too. One funny thing from the code commits timings, no commit on Sundays :) Read more

Andy Rubin Unleashed Android on the World. Now Watch Him Do the Same With AI

Now that Rubin had shepherded smartphones from concept to phenomenon, they no longer held much interest. As an engineering problem, they had been solved. Sure, entrepreneurs kept launching new apps, but for someone who considered engineering an art, that was like adding a few brushstrokes atop layers of dried paint. Rubin wanted to touch canvas again—and he could see a fresh one unfurling in front of him. Read more

Building a culture of more pluggable open source

If there is one word that often percolates conversations hailing the benefits of open source, it is choice. We often celebrate many of the 800+ Linux distributions, the countless desktops, applications, frameworks, and more. Choice, it would seem, is a good thing. Interestingly, choice is also an emotive thing. Read more

A new frontier for open source: Linux will power our robotic future

"You know, with windows versus Linux, Windows got there first by a long shot. It was the entrenched party. So Linux is the scrappy upstart. In the case of robotics, open source got there first. The community grew up doing things the open source way. There was actually a period in the mid-2000s where Microsoft put a lot of effort into its Windows-based Robotics Developer Studio. It had really good features, but it's never taken off. So yeah, I think robotics are proving to be a different situation than what happened with personal computing." Long live Linux. Long live ROS. Long live open source. Read more