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Asia-Pacific govts sign Linux promo pact

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The Japanese, Chinese and South Korean governments have agreed to co-develop a Linux-based alternative to Windows.

According to Japan's Nihon Shimbun Kizon and Yomiuri Shimbun newspapers yesterday, the agreement was struck on Beijing this past Saturday.

Development work will be carried out in the private sector with state backing. The three governments will also promote the use of Linux not only for state-owned institutions but within business, too.

At this stage it's not clear whether the trio have in mind a new Linux distro - tuned to their various national languages, presumably - or are simply suggesting Far Easter companies switch to the open source operating system in any of its distribution guises.

Either way, the goal is the same: to reduce the region's dependence on Microsoft's software. All three governments believe that reliance has limited their strength in the computer software market. ®

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