Oracle drops a massive self-serving rant on the US Government that DevOps, open source and public cloud isn’t a proper solution
There are three false narratives that have taken the USG off course in our view:
1) False Narrative: Government should attempt to emulate the fast-paced innovation of Silicon Valley. Silicon Valley is comprised of IT vendors most of which fail. The USG is not a technology vendor nor is it a start-up. Under no circumstance should the USG attempt to become a technology vendor. The USG can never develop, support or secure products economically or at scale. Government developed products are not subject to the extensive testing in the commercial market. Instead, the Government should attempt to emulate the best-practices of large private-sector Fortune 50 customers, which have competed, evaluated, procured and secured commercial technology successfully.
2) False Narrative: In-house government IT development know-how is critical for IT modernization. In-house government procurement and program management expertise is central to successful modernization efforts. Significant IT development expertise is not. Substantial custom software development efforts were the norm at large commercial enterprises, until it became obvious that the cost and complexity of developing technology was prohibitive, with the end-products inherently insecure and too costly to maintain long-term. The most important skill set of CIO’s today is to critically compete and evaluate commercial alternatives to capture the benefits of innovation conducted at scale, and then to manage the implementation of those technologies efficiently. Then, as evidenced by both OPM and Equifax, there needs to be a singular focus on updating, patching, and securing these systems over time.
3) False Narrative: The mandate to use open source technology is required because technology developed at taxpayer expense must be available to the taxpayer. Here there is an inexplicable conflation between “open data,” which has a long legacy in the USG and stems from decades old principles that the USG should not hold copyrights, and “open source” technology preferences, which have been long debated and rejected. There is no such principle that technology developed or procured by the USG should be available free for all citizens, in fact that would present a significant dis-incentive to conducting business with the USG.
First, Just about everything in this submission sounds self serving and protecting their own revenue. Its hard to see this as a genuine attempt to add value to the process. Second, the author of the letter has adopted a tone that is approximately like a father berating a child for uppity behaviour.
- Still, don’t expect good behaviour from Oracle. Its about selling, selling, selling. The only thing that matters is making the deal and screw everything else.