One of the best adverts out there for the use of open source geospatial technologies is the OSGeo Live DVD (http://live.osgeo.org/en/overview/overview.html). It contains working examples of so much software that you almost don’t know where to start. the documentation is clear and precise and there are all sorts of tutorials on the web explaining how to get started with the distro.
If you haven’t worked with this before I recommend you check it out, but be aware that the download is huge and it can be a bit slow if you run it in a virtual machine.
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