updated 09:25 am EST, Mon February 13, 2006
Mac users locked out
The US government is moving to an electronic system for processing grant applications that would lock out Mac users for at least one year. The Washington Post reports that the new Mac-incompatible "Grants.gov" system is under development and deployment at a cost of tens of billions of dollars to tax payers. The system is designed to replace paper applications with electronic forms and is being phased in at the National Institutes of Health, Department of Housing and Urban Development and other federal agencies--with all 26 grant-giving agencies expected to implement the new system by 2007. While some have had luck with workarounds, Mac users are being left out: "What if the federal government were about to give away more than $400 billion in grants, but only people whose computers ran on Microsoft software could apply? That is the predicament that many scientists, scholars and others say they are in as the government enters the final phase of its five-year effort to streamline its grant-application process."