The Indian government is trying to encourage the use of computers across the country by distributing free CDs that contain localized versions of popular open-source applications.
The government has started distributing CDs containing Tamil-language versions of various open-source applications, including the Firefox browser, the OpenOffice.org productivity suite and the Columba e-mail client. It plans to freely distribute 3.5 million copies of the CD to Tamil speakers worldwide, according to R.K.V.S. Raman, a researcher at the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing, a Bangalore-based organization involved in the production of the CD.
Open-Source software has two main advantages for the Indian population–
* It is relatively inexpensive and
* It can be modified fairly easily.