In a week of appointments designed to improve the use of Linux in the public sector, General H. Hugh Shelton, the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and counsel to the President, joined Red Hat Inc.s board of directors, while several open-source luminaries joined forces with George Washington Universitys Cyber Security Policy and Research Institute.
In a statement released on Thursday, General Shelton said he was enthusiastic about joining the Red Hat board and about its "tremendous vision." A native of Tarboro, N.C., Shelton received a Bachelors Degree in Textiles from North Carolina State University. He later became the 14th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on October 1, 1997, and served two 2-year terms.
Meanwhile, Brian Behlendorf, a founder of the Apache Web server project; Miguel de Icaza, the co-founder of open-source desktop and server solution provider Ximian; Hans Reiser, creator of the Reiser file system; and Jeffrey Bates, a founder of the Slashdot Web site, have all pledged to help the CSPRI promote the use of open-source software in the public sector.
Behlendorf said that while he wants the public sector to adopt open-source technologies, he also wants to help the government to understand that it "can work with the open-source community to promote open standards, open systems and open government."
De Icaza said he was excited about the opportunity to help further promote the use of free software in the government and all its branches.
But Reiser was attracted by the the open-source communitys ability to continue building on the infrastructure to support military grade security. "We have already rewritten the infrastructure supporting the old hierarchical semantics so that they can be upgraded without being discarded. Now, with the assistance of CSPRI, we will be able to start working on these exciting new semantics. We will take Linux into the new millennium by adding support for semi-structured data querying and modeling," he said.
Other companies working with Linux have recently moved to seek a federal stamp of approval for their applications running on Linux. IBM in February said it would work with the Linux community to enter the Common Criteria certification process for the Linux operating system early this year and will proceed to certify Linux at increasing security levels through next year.
Separately, Oracle Corp. also said in February that it would submit Red Hat Inc.s Linux Advanced Server for a Common Criteria evaluation at Evaluation Assurance Level 2. Once that is completed, which is expected to happen this year, the next step is to evaluate the Oracle9i Release 2 database on top of the evaluated Linux. That is expected to take a few months.
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