I have just got back from CENATIC in Spain, where myself and Ross Gardler (former OSS Watch manager and now Programme Lead at FOSS consultancy OpenDirective) have been giving training on the Software Sustainability Maturity Model and sharing ideas on future collaborations and the state of the FOSS world. CENATIC is located in Almendralejo, in the southern Spanish region of Extremadura, a region familiar to open source news watchers as a keen adopter of FOSS in the public sector. CENATIC itself is:
a strategic project of the Government of Spain to promote the awareness and use of free software and / or open source in all areas of the society, with a focus on government, businesses, the technology sector provider and / or user of free technologies, and development communities.
So CENATIC’s remit is certainly broader than OSS Watch’s focus on education. They also have swankier offices (see above). The visit was extremely useful to us, and I would like to thank everyone at CENATIC, and Almendralejo’s Mayor D. José García Lobato, for making use feel most welcome. It was interesting to learn of the methods CENATIC employs in assessing the sustainability and maturity of software projects, and we look forward to using their experiences to further refine the model. It was also fascinating to learn about how the Spanish government supports the IT sector’s engagement with open source, and works to create sustainable solutions to the problems it faces. So thank you Manuel Velardo Pacheco, Harikrishna Ramsamy, Jorge Martín del Álamo and Manuel Dominguez Dorado for a most interesting and entertaining visit!