Reading an article about how [Europe is falling behind on open-source](http://www.cbronline.com/article_news.asp?guid=B3785019-0E71-44C3-93E7-5014648CE313), I can’t help but think of the recent ICT Expo, which took it on itself to dish out “Industry Excellence” awards. Except it got so much wrong, it wasn’t even funny. It looked more like a bunch of old boys meeting together to congratulate each other than an actual representation of the Irish IT industry.
Ignoring all of the other categories and just focusing on the “Open Source Project of the Year”, we can instantly see that there’s something very wrong here. The two nominations were
1. Soft Telecom
### Soft Telecom
I have no idea what these guys do. Or did, since currently their website [redirects to their Ensim administrator page](https://softtelecom.com:19638/webhost/rollout/site). So, regardless of exactly what kind of open-source project they’re undertaking, this hardly reflects any kind of “Industry Excellence” so far.
When the winners were first announced, I looked very hard, but couldn’t see what exactly Enovation actually *did*. If they provided open-source software, [their site](http://www.enovation.ie/) certainly didn’t mention it. Now they’ve got a large banner which explains [exactly what they did to win the award](http://www.enovation.ie/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=125&Itemid=89) – they set up Moodle for a college.
I mean, Jesus. This is frightening.
But thinking about it, what else is there? [ILUG](http://www.linux.ie) is a useful resource, but not particularly pro-active. Likewise, [BUGI](http://ie.bsd.net/) has been spluttering its way into actual usefulness for the past few years. [OpenEir](http://eirepreneur.blogs.com/eirepreneur/openeir/) has potential, but is still in its infancy.
Are there any significant Irish Open Source projects?
I have had the misfortune of being exposed to Moodle. Typical consequence:
Lecturer: I put your groups up on Moodle. Go organise! Be proactive!
Students: Where on Moodle is it?
Lecturer: Just click on the ‘Groups’ link.
Students: There is no ‘Groups’ link.
Lecturer: I fixed it. Should be there now.
Students: No, still not there.
Lecturer: Fuck it. I’ll mail a .doc. Let us never speak of Moodle again.