Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 25th Sep 2007 18:40 UTC
Gnome Ars has reviewed GNOME 2.20. "GNOME 2.20 was officially released last week after six months of development. The new version includes strong incremental improvements that contribute to a better user experience and provide more flexibility and integration opportunities for third-party software developers."
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Pointless
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 26th Sep 2007 12:31 UTC
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

All this pointless talk against Mono...

How about Samba? Wine? Fat32 that used to be a problem until recently? NTFS drivers? OpenOffice.org .doc filters? And so on?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Pointless
by segedunum on Wed 26th Sep 2007 15:16 in reply to "Pointless"
segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

How about Samba? Wine? Fat32 that used to be a problem until recently? NTFS drivers? OpenOffice.org .doc filters? And so on?

Because Mono is a little bit different in how patents have, and can be, applied to it. With stuff such as Samba, Wine, Fat32, NTFS and OpenOffice filters these are all independently produced code for interoperability purposes that you could never nail down anything common with. Microsoft prefers shifting technical goalposts anyway, which is far cheaper.

The line that many people, including the Mono project itself, have come up with is that the ECMA stuff is OK whereas the Microsoft specific APIs may not be. I really don't know how anyone can say that. Microsoft have stated that they have a patent or two on things such as the CLR, and the ECMA provides implementers no real patent protection whatsoever. The ECMA does not state that people submitting standards can't hold patents, but merely states that they must give some kind of RAND agreement. However, that still doesn't stop companies from using their patents, and in that event all that can happen is that the ECMA standard in question will be dropped:

http://www.ecma-international.org/memento/codeofconduct.htm

This is why we had some discussion about the Mono people supposedly having a letter from HP and Microsoft that the common .Net underpinnings such as the CLR would be available under RAND terms forever. No such letter ever materialised, and presumably, only Novell's customers can be sure that

The clincher is that in all of Microsoft's patents regarding .Net related stuff that I've seen, they have clearly stated that the patent only applies to code run with a CLR (Common Language Runtime). It's not a general thing as you see with most of them.

However, the the acid test is whether anyone will use Mono in the open source world (and they are), and in the absence of anything better currently that's the way things are. Certainly from a Gnome development perspective, Mono is just a big step forward.

Reply Parent Score: 3