NewsCIA Software Developer Gets Frustrated and Goes Open Source

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Matthew Burton has been trying for three years to get a simple application into the hands of CIA analysts, but he can’t get past the squabbling over intellectual property rights. So now Burton says he’s going to release the code as an open source project.

The application, Collaborative ACH, is an “Analysis of Competing Hypotheses” Web-based platform. Basically it’s an application that allows analysts to plug in theories and evidence to come up with an answer to a problem, and to collaborate with other analysts working on the same issue.

“The program was supposed to work with Analytic Space, an online workspace for spooks,” Wired’s Noah Shachtmann reported. “No one could come up with A-Space’s proprietary development specifications. Then came the problem of figuring out ACH’s licensing rights. Progress on the project ground to a halt.”

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