Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 11th Mar 2008 23:28 UTC, submitted by irbis
Mono Project "Does GNOME co-founder Miguel de Icaza's backflip over the Novell-Microsoft deal a few days ago mean that he has finally been convinced that he is on a one-way path to nowhere? Has he realised that his own project, Mono, is actually putting GNOME on a development track that can leave it open to patent claims one day? And has he realised that creating Moonlight, a clone of Microsoft's Silverlight, (with which the company hopes to trump Adobe's Flash) is not going to advance the cause of free software one iota?"
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RE[2]: Destructive
by google_ninja on Wed 12th Mar 2008 02:34 UTC in reply to "RE: Destructive"
google_ninja
Member since:
2006-02-05

It is because there is next to no chance of it happening.

MS is partnering with Novell with a bunch of stuff atm, so as things stand now there isn't much chance of them sueing. And the .net team has been very pro mono since the beginning, and they actually do stuff to help out (like giving mono their test cases) It isn't right to bank on that, but if they do sue, who cares? Noone is advocating winforms development on linux, winforms is there for compatibility with windows apps. XSP on linux is nice, but it is mostly there to be able to run ASP.net apps without being tied to windows server and IIS. The CLR, C#, GTK#, and Cocoa# are all open standards, and even if MS ends up not playing nice with ECMA, the mono guys can just continue with what they have, and take it in a different direction.

I'm sure you've heard it before, but that is basically it. Most people take something being an open standard published by a reputable standards board to be a uniquivical answer to the question. Not only that, but it has been years now, and instead of hearing rumblings of dissent coming from redmond, we are seeing more and more cooperation, and framework bits being opensourced. If I were to be all like, "ZOMG, TEH SKY IS FALLING!!" about kde going with webkit, or people distributing CUPS because the technologies are now coming out of Apple, you would probably label me as anti-apple, and rightly so. dont get me wrong, I don't think you are lying when you are saying you are concerned about this, but I do think the reason you are is because of FUD that is being spread about it by people who do lie.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Destructive
by monodeldiablo on Wed 12th Mar 2008 03:35 in reply to "RE[2]: Destructive"
monodeldiablo Member since:
2005-07-06

"Microsoft probably won't sue" is hardly a compelling reason to start any project, especially when a number of other outstanding solutions already exist in the FOSS space and could use the extra manpower. If the Mono team was really out to help folks and promote good technology, they'd bring the strengths of the CLR to the open source community.

Parrot needs the kind of design, coding, and testing that Novell and the Mono team could bring to the table.

Vala could use serious manpower in writing interfaces and optimizing the metacompiler.

The GTK team would love help restructuring their libraries and squashing performance bugs.

Helping in any one of these areas would have far-reaching, cross-platform benefits for massive segments of OSS. Instead, the Mono folks chose to write a VM from scratch and play perpetual catch-up to Microsoft ever-changing language extensions (just ask any other vendor how easy and fun it is to ride the Microsoft protocol bronco without getting bucked off). And for what? Well, let's run down a list of Mono's "strengths":

Mono allows unencumbered, cross-platform interoperability... so long as "interoperability" is defined in such a way as to exclude GUIs, database access, and web development.

Well OK, so it's not so great at real, usable interoperability, but hey, if you target Mono, your code will at least run unmodified on Windows... right? As it turns out, it's taken significant porting effort to get Banshee and Beagle to run on Windows (and even then, they're separate forks from the Linux codebase).

The syntax, though, is the fallback argument. C# is beautiful, concise, fun to program in. It's also available for Vala (without the accompanying memory bloat and speed limitations of Mono) and even Parrot.

Yes, there's a lot of people out there whinging about the Novell-Microsoft deal. Sure, there are loads of conspiracy theories and plenty of high-pitched, uninformed FUD-slinging. But once you actually sit down and examine the facts, it's even more clear that Mono is the software equivalent of the Concorde: a technologically sexy novelty, but a total failure for its stated goals.

Reply Parent Score: 12

RE[4]: Destructive
by jpobst on Wed 12th Mar 2008 04:19 in reply to "RE[3]: Destructive"
jpobst Member since:
2006-09-26

Helping in any one of these areas would have far-reaching, cross-platform benefits for massive segments of OSS. Instead, the Mono folks chose to write a VM from scratch...


To be fair, Mono predates Parrot by about a year, and predates Vala by about five years. So saying they should have helped on these projects before starting their own "from scratch" is kinda silly.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[4]: Destructive
by google_ninja on Wed 12th Mar 2008 04:44 in reply to "RE[3]: Destructive"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Helping in any one of these areas would have far-reaching, cross-platform benefits for massive segments of OSS. Instead, the Mono folks chose to write a VM from scratch and play perpetual catch-up to Microsoft ever-changing language extensions (just ask any other vendor how easy and fun it is to ride the Microsoft protocol bronco without getting bucked off). And for what? Well, let's run down a list of Mono's "strengths"


Novell wanted java without the cruft that they could control. None of the environments you mentioned has the "everything and the kitchen sink" mentality that .net and java have. The only reason they play "catch up", is for binary compatiblity with windows apps. That is a huge thing, but from a purely technical point of view they could stop and take it in another direction any time they wanted.

Mono allows unencumbered, cross-platform interoperability... so long as "interoperability" is defined in such a way as to exclude GUIs, database access, and web development.


Mono encourages users to their own stack. It isn't like they just stop at winforms and ado. There is Gtk#, Cocoa#, and Qt# to choose from.

Well OK, so it's not so great at real, usable interoperability, but hey, if you target Mono, your code will at least run unmodified on Windows... right? As it turns out, it's taken significant porting effort to get Banshee and Beagle to run on Windows (and even then, they're separate forks from the Linux codebase).


I don't know how much experience you have with cross platform apps, I was a java guy for almost 5 years and let me tell you, "write once, run anywhere" only applies for trivial apps. And java is arguably as cross platform as it gets.

Knowing nothing about the specific issues in this case, my guess is that GStreamer on windows wasn't really in state for banshee to be usable, and there had to be alot of api mapping to make things work. Gtk on windows is about the opposit of impressive.

Regardless, you do have a point, if you are expecting zero effort porting on a non trivial app, you are in for a big suprise.


The syntax, though, is the fallback argument. C# is beautiful, concise, fun to program in. It's also available for Vala (without the accompanying memory bloat and speed limitations of Mono) and even Parrot.


Does vala or parrot have frameworks that even come close to the .net API? That is one of the big positives, you are using the same framework to write webapps as you use to write desktop apps, as you use to write mobile apps and everything in between.

Yes, there's a lot of people out there whinging about the Novell-Microsoft deal. Sure, there are loads of conspiracy theories and plenty of high-pitched, uninformed FUD-slinging. But once you actually sit down and examine the facts, it's even more clear that Mono is the software equivalent of the Concorde: a technologically sexy novelty, but a total failure for its stated goals.


Its stated goals is to provide a modern, high quality application framework for linux. I would say they succeded; apart from a few areas, their performance is on par with java, and they have managed to stay about a year and a half behind microsoft so far when it comes to functionality.

Personally, I don't think it is the savior of the free software world the way that Novell is trying to plug it, but it has alot of very compelling aspects to it, especially when compared to other options in the same space. As a .net guy on windows, it is the obvious choice for me whenever I want to bang out a quick app or a small tool on linux (making linux development very accessable to windows developers is not a small thing either)

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: Destructive
by miguel on Wed 12th Mar 2008 16:29 in reply to "RE[3]: Destructive"
miguel Member since:
2005-07-27

If the Mono team was really out to help folks and promote good technology, they'd bring the strengths of the CLR to the open source community.


None of the solutions that you list are of particular interest to us, as they fail a number of tests: (a) are they multi-language platforms; (b) do they have an extensive ISV platform; (c) readily available documentation and tutorials and an ecosystem around them.

All fascinating projects, and we wish them good luck, but that is not what we want to achieve.

If you feel so passionate about them, you should join those efforts.
Helping in any one of these areas would have far-reaching, cross-platform benefits for massive segments of OSS. Instead, the Mono folks chose to write a VM from scratch and play perpetual catch-up to Microsoft ever-changing language extensions (just ask any other vendor how easy and fun it is to ride the Microsoft protocol bronco without getting bucked off). And for what? Well, let's run down a list of Mono's "strengths":


In some areas we play catch-up, but every time we do, more programmers can port their software to Linux. You probably will not hear about them on OSNews.com, they are too busy getting real work done, but we are very proud of every developer that we have moved over from Windows.

Not all software will port, and not all of it is a 5 minute job, but it is possible, and in particular for vertical applications this is fantastic.


Mono allows unencumbered, cross-platform interoperability... so long as "interoperability" is defined in such a way as to exclude GUIs, database access, and web development.


Incorrect; We do support GUI portability using Windows.Forms, granted, people need to do some work on this area if they use P/Invoke, but its a small price to pay to get your app on Linux or MacOS.

Database access, moves transparently, you obviously have never tried it out, and the same goes for web applications (honestly, the easiest of the applications to port).

Porting to a new *database* (ie, MS SQL to Postgress) typically involves more work that porting the code with Mono. If you do not mind keeping the SQL server around (and most people are not willing to migrate this piece) porting of web apps is trivial.

The rest of your comment is clearly based on opinions based on a vague knowledge of Mono, factoids, not facts.


The syntax, though, is the fallback argument. C# is beautiful, concise, fun to program in. It's also available for Vala (without the accompanying memory bloat and speed limitations of Mono) and even Parrot.


More nonsense. Mono is not about C#, its about the CLI. But even if the "syntax" was available C# has plenty of features not available in either Parrot or Vala. Facts, not speculation.

miguel

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Destructive
by gilboa on Wed 12th Mar 2008 06:40 in reply to "RE[2]: Destructive"
gilboa Member since:
2005-07-06

Should I point the battle between RAMBUS and JEDEC members? [1]
Readers digest: RAMBUS sat at the JEDEC (Joint Electron Device Engineering Council) sessions surrounding SDRAM and DDR standards, while in-fact, they were attempting to patent key technologies that were discussed by JEDEC members that were considered common knowledge.
Shortly after RAMBUS retired from JEDEC and started suing JEDEC members for "patent infringement".

Somehow I won't be shocked if MS pulls a "RAMBUS" on mono/silverlight users/developers.

- Gilboa
[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rambus

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: Destructive
by google_ninja on Wed 12th Mar 2008 11:57 in reply to "RE[3]: Destructive"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Do you remember how the RAMBUS fiasco ended? I'm sure microsoft does. They got told that they could not encourage their intellectual property to be used by everyone, and then turn around and sue the industry.

Reply Parent Score: 2