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Miguel De Icaza On Mono, Moonlight, and Gnome

CmdrTaco posted more than 5 years ago | from the people-who-need-to-invest-in-decaf dept.

328

Knuckles writes "Austrian newspaper Der Standard continues its recent series of in-depth interviews with free software developers. This time they sat down with Novell's Vice President of Developer Platform, Miguel de Icaza of Gnome and Mono fame. The interview was conducted at GUADEC (GNOME Users' And Developers' European Conference). Miguel talks mainly about Mono 2.0 and .Net 3.5 compatibility, enhancing the collaboration with Microsoft over Silverlight ('Moonlight' in Mono), and the larger political situation of Mono and Moonlight. When the interviewer asks whether Moonlight is only validating Silverlight on the web, Miguel gives a quite detailed answer that includes a possibly well-deserved swipe at Mozilla ..."

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First page of three. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466185)

Miguel de Icaza: "We could refresh the look and feel of the entire desktop with Moonlight"
Interview: Mono leader criticizes double standards when it comes to the open web and talks about future developments and the increasing openness at Microsoft

In 1997 Miguel de Icaza - together with Federico Mena Quintero - started one of the most influential Open Source projects: The GNOME desktop. As a Vice President of Developer platform at Novell he nowadays is leading the development of Mono, the free .Net-implementation he initiated in 2001. Since a few months he is also responsible for another group inside Novell: The Moonlight developers who are working on an open source version of Microsofts Silverlight - a task officially blessed by Microsoft.

During the recent GNOME Users and Developers Conference (GUADEC) Andreas Proschofsky had the chance to sit down with de Icaza and talk about future developments around Mono and Moonlight, the possibility of open sourcing .Net itself and changes in Microsofts attitude towards free software.

The following interview is also available in a german translation.

derStandard.at: When is Mono 2.0 going to be released?

Miguel de Icaza: Mono 2.0 has been three years in the making. We are actually branching for Mono 2.0 on Monday [July 14th, apo], we are going to have the regular two months Q&A period, testing of tarballs and installation and fixing the major bugs. So it should come out in September. We are going to have RC1, RC2... After the initial release there will be regular point releases - 2.2, 2.4, 2.6 - every three months or so.

derStandard.at: Time based releases?

de Icaza: Roughly. Now that we have 2.0 API covered we are going after specific features, so for example at the end of the year we are going to resume work on the Compacting GC (garbage collector) and we hope to have this enabled by Mono 2.6. So instead of the team being spread across lots of different projects, we are going to pick a specific feature - like updating Windows Forms to 3.5 - and while one half of the team obviously still will have to do maintenance work, the others are going to focus solely on that.

derStandard.at: Are you going to fully support .Net 3.5?

de Icaza: The problem with 3.5 is, that it includes 3.0 where they basically dumped a bunch of libraries that are not really part .Net, they are just built on .Net. For example, we do not have any plans to do WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation), this is pretty much out of the question. It's just too large for our team to build. The thing that we can do is turn Silverlight in a sort of "WPF light", and get most of the features from running Silverlight outside the browser, which we already do.

derStandard.at: What about the rest of 3.5?

de Icaza: WCF (Windows Communication Foundation) is happening, although it is happening very slowly because it is very large. We have the basics in place but it
is not complete. Also WCF is not really high performance so we are just pointing people to use ICE from ZeroC instead (or Google Protocol Buffers), if you want
something fast - use that.

derStandard.at: The last time we talked you were in favor of enhancing the partnership with Microsoft, is that stuff progressing?

de Icaza: Yes. For instance last September Microsoft signed an agreement which results in Microsoft endorsing Moonlight - our own free implementation of Silverlight. So they are providing us with specifications, they are providing us with tech contacts, so whenever any specification is not clear, we have access to their engineers. Also one thing that is very unique: Microsoft is going to be distributing an add-on to Moonlight called the "media pack". And that add-on contains all the media codecs that Silverlight uses, so it contains the MP3 decoder, the VC1 decoder, WMV and all that stuff. We are going to provide Moonlight and they are adding the codec parts - and this is going to be totally legal, it's something that they are actually encouraging - that's pretty sweet.

derStandard.at: They are going to provide that for every distribution or just for openSUSE?

de Icaza: For every distribution, also x86, x86_64 and PowerPC. In fact we are going to provide binaries for BSDs, for Solaris - both on SPARC and Intel.

derStandard.at: Do you see Mono once getting blessed as the "official" .Net for Linux?

de Icaza: I hope so. It might end up that at some point Microsoft just open ups .net, like Sun did with Java, that's always a possibility. I don't know how real that possibility is, but it could be. In the meantime I think we are on track to become a viable .Net implementation.

Some interesting background is that with Moonlight 1.0 we are focusing on the graphics engine pipeline, video and so on.

But with Moonlight 2.0, we are bundling Mono with it, our own CLI implementation.

And part of the agreement with Microsoft gives us access to their test suites, to validate that our implementation is correct. And that includes test suites for the CLR, test suites for the class libraries. So we can at least validate that the Mono parts that are used in Moonlight are a 1:1 mapping to .Net.

derStandard.at: What about getting more documentation from Microsoft?

de Icaza:We do not really need more at this point. What we usually use to implement stuff are the public APIs as documented on the Microsoft website. Every once in a while we implement something and it turns out the documentation was not really good, and those are the difficult cases. And in those cases we just have to resort to trial and errors to match their implementation.

Second and third page of three. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466281)

Miguel de Icaza: "We could refresh the look and feel of the entire desktop with Moonlight"
Interview: Mono leader criticizes double standards when it comes to the open web and talks about future developments and the increasing openness at Microsoft

derStandard.at: Hypothetically speaking: If Microsoft would really release .Net under an open source license, what would the consequences for Mono be?

de Icaza: Well you actually can already get the class libraries source code, but it is released under Microsoft's "look but don't touch"-license. So it's not really open source, you can't redistribute it and you can certainly not take the code, recompile it and run it in Mono, that's not allowed.

Now, if I were to speculate, if .NET was open sourced there really would not be a lot of reason for the core Mono libraries to exist. Maybe there would be in certain cases, where people would prefer to use one of our class libraries or other parts, but not for the whole core. Now on the other hand the Mono project has created a lot of APIs that go beyond the core .Net. So those ones will continue to exist and evolve, things like GTK#, Mono.Addins, Mono.Zeroconf, Ndesk.Options, Dbus# all of that stuff.

Much of that would depend on the licensing Microsoft would choose for such a step, but there certainly would be some cases where components of Mono would be better or remain relevant. We are now porting mono to the Wii and the PS3, so developers can use it to build games and we are working with other console manufacturers to do the same thing. It's used for embedded system, for use cases like digital radios and MP3-players. Because you can shrink Mono down to a real small runtime. So if .Net was really open source, I think there would still be value for Mono in all these areas.

In the meantime - I really don't think they are going to open source .Net.

derStandard.at: Microsoft has publicly stated that they want to become more open in the future, do you think there is some real value in that promise?

de Icaza: Yes, definitely. They have been talking about opening up and improving interoperability since February, and in March at the Mix-conference you really could see them talking a lot more about engaging with the community, open specs and process. And I was just there a couple of weeks ago for another of our regular meetings and I had the chance to not only talk to the top management but to actual engineers and developers. And what was interesting: The really got the message. I don't know if it was an internal message or if they are asking people to think in that way but in the last six months there has been a significant amount of change inside Microsoft.

derStandard.at: With the increased focus on Moonlight, did you just re-prioritize people from the Mono group inside Novell or is this a new group?

de Icaza: This is a new group inside of Novell. Basically my team grew from about 30 to 40 people over the last year and a half. Most of the hires went to Moonlight, so now with 15 people working on Moonlight, the biggest part are new hires.

derStandard.at: Coming back to the licensing of codecs from Microsoft. As far as I understand, that's only valid for applications running in the web browser, is that correct?

de Icaza: Yes, that is true. Basically Microsofts position is that they are willing to redistribute the codecs towards the goal of making Silverlight universal, but they are not willing to pay the bill for every Linux user's desktop, as they have to pay MPEG LA and such groups for the licenses.

derStandard.at: And it's going to be a separate package?

de Icaza: Yes, we'll be making it as easy as possible to install, but it is a Microsoft product and it is going to come from the Microsoft web site.

derStandard.at: Will it be possible to package that with distributions?

de Icaza: I do not think so; actually I am pretty sure that you will have to download it from Microsofts webpage, though I do not remember the exact details here.

derStandard.at: With Moonlight, what are the current goals you are trying to achieve.

de Icaza: Our first goal is finishing Moonlight 1.0 because that is what's actually deployed today. And that's basically a rich canvas with multimedia capabilities - all accessible through Javascript. So it is actually the browser scripting engine that controls the plugin (Firefox, IE, Opera or whatever).

Initially we only wanted to do 2.0 but it turned out that we got 1.0 for free as 2.0 is just this canvas and on top of that they added .Net. So we are going to ship Moonlight 1.0 in the next few months. There is actually only one test that we fail in the Microsoft test suite at the moment but we are failing on a couple of published websites, so obviously the test doesn't cover every use case and we are focused on fixing these problems.

Meanwhile another part of the team has been working on the 2.0 features for quite some time - as long as it doesn't touch the core, things like the security sandbox, making the VM more robust, the networking stack and so on. We did this because we really wanted to ship 1.0 and did not want to destabilize the core with other things.

derStandard.at: Do you think you are going to be able to deliver Moonlight 2.0 in a reasonable time?

de Icaza: Yeah, I think it will takes us about 9 months to get there. Remember - 2.0 is to a large extent Mono, and Mono already has nearly all of the required features. A lot of work went into strengthening Mono, so that if you run it over the web and you get malicious code Mono doesn't crash or something. There are also some bits of code that need to be rewritten like layout management, which we haven't done until now.

But here is a really nice thing that happened: Microsoft open sourced all of the high level controls - buttons, list-view, scrollbars, and so on - they are under the MS-PL. So that directly helps Moonlight as it's less work for us to do. And it helps third party developers because they can see how things are done and learn from that.

derStandard.at: As Moonlight now is the official Silverlight release for Linux, is Microsoft financially supporting you in doing this?

de Icaza: No, that's hundred percent Novell.

----

Miguel de Icaza: "We could refresh the look and feel of the entire desktop with Moonlight"
Interview: Mono leader criticizes double standards when it comes to the open web and talks about future developments and the increasing openness at Microsoft

derStandard.at: Why support Silverlight at all?

de Icaza: I can give you two explanations - the business side explanation and the hacker side explanation. The hacker explanation is simple: I find Silverlight incredibly appealing - you get C#, you get a DLR (Dynamic Language Runtime), you get a fantastic graphics engine with a fantastic animation framework, you get video, you get audio, multi-language compatibility and so on and so forth. And I get a JITted language also, and a static language with dynamic features that beats Javascript out of the water.

The business side explanation is that we want to make sure that Linux remains a first class citizen on the web. As websites start using Silverlight we don't want Linux to be in a position where you can't access those websites. Also we thought Silverlight will be important enough and have enough market share just because it is Microsoft doing it.

derStandard.at: But aren't you actually validating Silverlight by that and driving adoption?

de Icaza: That's what some people want you to believe. But I don't think that's the case. Linux on the desktop is still a very small amount of people. If you believe that getting the Linux desktop people happy is what you need to validate a technology, you have lost a sense of proportion.

I mean - how many people outside of the technology world really know about Linux at the moment. And even the Mozilla guys - the keynote we had here was done on a mac, every single Mozilla developer uses a Mac. And it's funny, they constantly attack Silverlight, they constantly attack Flash and then all of them use proprietary operating systems, they don't seem to have a problem doing it. And then they had the Guiness record thing for Firefox 3 and you went to the website and it had a flash map to show where people are downloading - so there definitely is a double standard here. And that's after all their claiming that you can do everything in AJAX - so they definitely don't "walk the walk".

derStandard.at: But isn't their message more like "moving in that direction"? For instance stuff like HTML5 video support is just coming up.

de Icaza: Yes, this is correct. But they claim that the right thing to do in that position is to boycott those things that are not open. And then even their widget for downloading Firefox is based on Flash. So they really don't have a problem with Flash, they seem to have these problems only when it comes to Microsoft technologies.

derStandard.at: Still - Couldn't the HTML5 stuff, Javascript 2.0 and all that be a good - and free - alternative - for something like Silverlight in the future?

de Icaza: It's certainly possible, and I am sure that this would be great for a lot of people, but not for everyone. I personally do not want to build my applications on Javascript. I think that its a) slowb) ugly and c) spaghetti code, right? I am sure some people like that, but to me it's something I really don't want to do. And unless Mozilla is willing to put C# or another language like that in the browser, the gap will be filled by third parties.

In general, when it comes to the technology adoption in the browser, anything that is a plug-in has a natural advantage over getting every browser vendor to support the technology. In this case, Flash and Silverlight.

For example, currently, the Mozilla approach is "you have to use our browser", so if for instance you want to work with svg you have to decide that you won't work with Internet Explorer. So this goes back to the browser wars and limits yourself to one browser. The other approach is to use plug-ins that work across multiple browsers and multiple platforms and the advantage that plug-ins have is that they are not married to a product and so the developers can deliver the same API in a real cross-platform and cross-browser way.

By having Moonlight, an open source implementation of Silverlight available under the LGPL and as a validated implementation of it, we can ensure that it is both open, and that it will be supported and available everywhere that it matters.

derStandard.at: You talked about re-using Silverlight / Moonlight for the desktop, is there already some concrete work happening, or are those still just ideas for the future?

de Icaza: We are actually doing that right now, we have a couple of projects. Lunar Eclipse is our Silverlight designer for Linux and that is actually built entirely as a desktop Silverlight application. The idea is to have both a desktop and a web version. We also built Moonlight desklets, which is like Apples Dashboard.

I am also trying to convince people that we need to redo certain desktop components using Moonlight because we could get a flashier, nicer user interface with the designers actually prototyping this interface in Inkscape or blender.

derStandard.at:Which parts are you referring to?

de Icaza: I think we could refresh the look and feel of the entire desktop. To be realistic I don't think we can do absolutely everything that would take years. So if I would have my choice today I would probably rewrite the gnome panel completely with Moonlight. I wouldn't go as far as doing the file manager although I think it would be great to do a new file manager or improve Nautilus but it would be a lot of work.

The other thing I would do is spice up existing applications, using Moonlight in a couple of areas. For example F-Spot could use a Moonlight based photo organizer so you could do things like sorting your photos visually and all that stuff that today is hard to do with F-Spot and the traditional icon view. Even Evolution could be extended, you could get graphical displays of when you got e-mail, different rendering mechanisms for the same informations. And you could rewrite the calendar to be a lot nicer.

(Andreas Proschofsky, derStandard.at, 03.08.2008)

And he cried out, half in pleasure, half in pain, as she shoved the dildo deeper into him... (Yeah, sorry folks, I couldn't resist.)

Re:Second and third page of three. (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466743)

Why exactly do they need to use MPEG?

Microsoft have their own audio/video formats which they could release without having to pay royalties to third parties, or they could use existing freely distributable formats.

Re:Second and third page of three. (1)

RingDev (879105) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467035)

The WMV codecs are included in the package he was talking about. The reason to supply MPEG is simple: that's what people use.

-Rick

Re:Second and third page of three. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24467051)

or they could use existing freely distributable formats.

It'd be a bit telling if they made use of current free and open formats while still telling everyone how bad Open-Source is. With MPEG they can just squeeze by the issue in ways they couldn't with OGG or something.

Re:Second and third page of three. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24467987)

The WMA/WMV codecs are covered by patents owned by *many* other companies as well as Microsoft, and and licensing is administered by the MPEG-LA.

See the list of patent holders for VC-1, which is based on WMV9: http://www.mpegla.com/vc1/

ATTENTION SHOPPERS! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466309)

ATTENTION SHOPPERS: PAY NO ATTENTION TO THE NECROTIC DOG PENIS. I REPEAT, PAY NO ATTENTION TO THE NECROTIC DOG PENIS CURRENTLY LOOMING OUTSIDE LOT 4. CONTINUE SHOPPING BUT PLEASE ENSURE YOU LEAVE VIA AN ALTERNATIVE EXIT AS WE ARE NO LONGER ABLE TO GUARANTEE YOUR SAFETY IN LOT 4, DUE TO THE NECROTIC DOG PENIS. FOR YOUR INFORMATION, LOTS 1, 2, 3, 5 AND 6 ARE CURRENTLY FREE OF BAYING NECROTIC DOG PENIS. PAY NO ATTENTION TO THE NECROTIC DOG PENIS. THANK YOU.

Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter = censorship, lameness filter = censorship, lameness filter = censorship, lameness filter = censorship, lameness filter = censorship, lameness filter = censorship.

Your comment violated the "postercomment" compression filter. Try less whitespace and/or less repetition.

Makes good points (3, Insightful)

apathy maybe (922212) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466323)

He makes good points about Mozilla, and Flash and stuff. But that doesn't mean we want to use MS trash. If it is 100% free, and patent free as well (does MS support extend to releasing all relevant patents for anyone to use, or whatever how you say it?), then sure use it if you want.

Personally, I don't know why the Mozilla folks don't run with XUL some more.

Personally though, I have Flash and Java turned off by default, I'm not about to have Silverlight (or Moonlight) enabled by default.

Re:Makes good points (2, Interesting)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466541)

The only reason I usually turn off Flash on sites other then some game sites or YouTube, is because the Linux Flash player is just so crappy. I have a decent enough /etc/hosts file that blocks 98% of the ads, but if I leave Flash on, Firefox's CPU shoots to 80% just displaying a banner ad. Thankfully, I downgraded to an older version and it doesn't do it as much.

Re:Makes good points (4, Interesting)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467469)

Try again. I'm only getting maybe 10% more CPU use by opening a tab for CNN.com on Firefox here with the latest player, and that's under 64bit Kubuntu, which runs the Adobe flash player in nswrapper.

Re:Makes good points (4, Informative)

PastaLover (704500) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467757)

The only reason I usually turn off Flash on sites other then some game sites or YouTube, is because the Linux Flash player is just so crappy. I have a decent enough /etc/hosts file that blocks 98% of the ads, but if I leave Flash on, Firefox's CPU shoots to 80% just displaying a banner ad. Thankfully, I downgraded to an older version and it doesn't do it as much.

Ehm, this is not the linux flash player as such, it's the flash player, period. I get the exact same problem on some sites in windows. Also downgrading flash is a seriously stupid thing to do right now, as the recent vulnerability they discovered leaves you wide open to attack. (and it has been spotted in the wild, though generally targeted at windows)

Re:Makes good points (5, Interesting)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466735)

Actually, although the Flash IDE is closed-source and proprietary, the SWF file format is now a published specification which others are free to implement [adobe.com].

Adobe did this years ago with PDF, and didn't take long to do so for SWF once they bought Macromedia. They want everyone using their formats, and to then compete based on the quality and branding of their authoring tools. It's a good business case in my eyes -- make the pie bigger by opening the spec but keep most of the pie yourself by making the best-known implementation that the most people know how to use.

To compare that with anything Microsoft has ever done, the executable format for Windows is the best example. To get more programmers targeting Windows, allowing more compiler makers into the market easily was a must. If you can only compile programs using the OS vendor's compiler, that feels very much like lock-in. By getting competing compiler and assembler products supporting their OS quickly made it easier for developers to decide to target the platform in its early days.

OOXML, albeit a contentious, oversized, and and only partially specified format, is an example of Microsoft trying to do some of the same things. They're trying to get people who believe in open, competitive file formats to use a format they have a competitive advantage in producing and editing. With Microsoft's past (and some of the gotchas in the spec itself), it's easy to see how that advantage could be kept through much chicanery.

However, the Adobe's got a pretty good record of allowing anyone to come along and make use of the Photoshop save format, the PDF publishing format (which is itself based on PostScript), and allowing JavaScript and ActionScript (both based on the ECMAScript standard, after all (which is based on earlier versions of JavaScript)) to interact cleanly. Now that SWF as a spec is published, it's difficult for honest people working with Microsoft technology to be judgmental about openness.

Re:Makes good points (4, Interesting)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467459)

the PDF publishing format (which is itself based on PostScript)

PostScript is the best example. Adobe wrote the first standard and implementation. They published a later version of the spec before they had an implementation and were beaten to market by a competitor. I don't know what, if any, market share Adobe still has for PostScript implementations (RIPs), but they certainly get a lot of money from the desktop publishing market that releasing PostScript helped to create.

Re:Makes good points (2, Informative)

howlingmadhowie (943150) | more than 5 years ago | (#24468235)

no it isn't free to implement. the project leader for gnash recently said words to the effect that if you have ever used adobe's flash plug-in, you cannot legally work on a free replacement.

Re:Makes good points (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24467605)

In creating .NET, Microsoft correctly recognized a problem they had: their existing cross-language development tools such as COM had a high learning curve and were clunky to use. Their offerings for developing an application were C, C++, or Visual Basic. Working with these components and making them inter-operate highlighted the desire for a powerful, "real" object oriented, garbage collecting, managed runtime. Say what you want about Microsoft's intentions, .NET is a step in the right direction for them. And if Linux developers feel the features it exposes are better to work with in some cases than Java (I happen to agree with that), there's no shame in adopting them.

Yes, potential patent issues make it so there is some risk involved. If MS is smart they'd realize that would severely hurt their image. On the other hand, do they really make legal decisions without considering their own potential problems, like running afowl of antitrust law, or being seen as more monopolistic than they are seen as today? Nevermind that being a monopoly would make them liable to lose billions of dollars, but also, they have an image problem already, and they probably don't want to make it worse.

But let's ignore that patents, or what company .NET comes from. The technology is pretty solid. It was the right thing to do to go beyond their existing technologies like COM. It's a pretty good answer to Java and addresses some of its shortcomings well. It also has more than one supported language. They say that pretty soon, it'll have inbuilt Python and Ruby too.

In creating Silverlight, MS recognized another area that could use some work: namely, flash sucks. It looks pretty doubtful that we'll see it adopted at this point, but if it does, it'll be good that Moonlight will have source code available. Yes, there are free/open projects that do Flash today, and are working on reverse-engineering, but you just know that they'll come out with more changes next week. If Moonlight is working with MS to provide real inter-operability, I think that's a good thing.

Same old... (5, Funny)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466327)

Looks like Miguel still pimping a marriage with Microsoft. Dude, she likes country and he likes rock-n-roll! Seafood vs. burger and fries. He's frugal, forward looking and she spends money like a drunken sailor! More importantly he just wants some freedom and she wants to tie him down. Let it go!

Open Microsoft (5, Funny)

dvice_null (981029) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466329)

"de Icaza: I hope so. It might end up that at some point Microsoft just open ups .net"

LOL

Re:Open Microsoft (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466677)

Miguel De Icaza is a beaner camel jockey chink coon curry-munching darkie dink gook heeb jigaboo junglebunny kike porchmonkey raghead slope spade spic tarbaby NIGGER and should go BACK WHERE HE CAME FROM.

YOU KNOW YOU AGREE WITH ME.

Out of context. (4, Insightful)

HanClinto (621615) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466747)

Lord knows there's certainly stuff to criticize about de Icaza, but this isn't really one of them.

"I hope so" refers to Mono becoming the officially sanctioned .Net standard for Linux -- not that de Icaza hopes Microsoft would open up .Net. If you actually read the very next question in the article (I must be new here...), you'd have seen where de Icaza said:

In the meantime - I really don't think they are going to open source .Net.

-- they are talking about the possibility of Microsoft pulling a Sun/Java thing, and if the open-source effort would have been wasted as a result. The answer is "no, but I don't think they would open-source it anyways".

Re:Open Microsoft (2, Informative)

cerelib (903469) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466769)

You did not include the entire sentence, here:

It might end up that at some point Microsoft just open ups .net, like Sun did with Java, that's always a possibility.

When you put it into the context of the history of Java, it is not all that far fetched.

Re:Open Microsoft (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24467553)

Sun has been a friend of the open source community for a long time:

NFS
OpenOffice
Solaris
Java
VirtualBox
Sun Grid Engine
etc .NET is a copy of Java, which Microsoft created because Java was cross platform. Why would they ever open .NET, when the goal of .NET was to create a non-portable clone of Java?

Re:Open Microsoft (4, Insightful)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467643)

When you put it into the context of the history of Java, it is not all that far fetched.

Yes it is. Sun has a track record of working closely with Free Software projects for quite a few years now. You almost expect Sun to release the code to major projects now (not "expect" as in thinking they owe it, but "expect" as in "I wouldn't be surprised if..."), as they've done with OpenOffice, ZFS, and even Solaris.

Microsoft released some fonts once, then later changed their minds.

I would be infinitely more surprised in Microsoft opening anything interesting than I would in Sun doing the same.

i just want (1, Insightful)

ionix5891 (1228718) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466331)

i just want to say thanks to people like Miguel for all the hard work they put into various open source projects

i know here on slashdot anything to do with microsoft == evil automatically

and i can imagine some of the comments that will be posted in this thread later on, but what the hell

Re:i just want (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466431)

Karma whore.

;p

Re:i just want (5, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466633)

MS has made it clear that they want to kill OSS. So Miguel decides to make an OSS alternative to Silverlight with MS's help, unfortunately, MS will add in proprietary features once this halfway kills flash, and the reference implantation won't be the OSS Moonlight, it will instead be MS's proprietary Silverlight.

Re:i just want (2, Interesting)

Ed Avis (5917) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466697)

Even if that happens it would be worth it just to kill Flash... I'll take a free software implementation over a binary blob any day, no matter what company originated the standard.

Re:i just want (4, Interesting)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467039)

But imagine Flash if even though it displayed banner ads just fine, it couldn't play YouTube and some games. That's exactly what could happen with Moonlight, sure it is OSS but it is useless.

Re:i just want (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24467023)

i just want to say thanks to people like Miguel for all the hard work they put into undermining various open source projects

There. Fixed that for you.

Yay Miguel (3, Interesting)

Ed Avis (5917) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466391)

If you read the interview it sounds hopelessly optimistic and naive to imagine that you could implement a multimedia framework compatible with Silverlight as a free software alternative to Flash, that you could have a .NET and C# implementation compatible with Microsoft's, that you could write desktop applications in C#... until you remember that Miguel and his team have an awesome track record of doing all these things.

To quote my favourite font name: \!Andale Mono!

Re:Yay Miguel (5, Insightful)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467063)

Awesome track record? I'm sorry, I must be living in an alternate reality. So MONO is now being used interchangeably on Linux and Microsoft platforms like Java is? Like he planned all along? So MONO has gained mass adoption and mass acceptance and has been embraced by Microsoft and they are now allowing them to .NET conferences where they were continually denying them from showing?

Wow. This new reality you live in smells vaguely of that new fragrance ... DeNial. You and Migual must shop at the same store.

Re:Yay Miguel (2, Insightful)

Ed Avis (5917) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467357)

I meant track record in terms of technical achievement, not marketing. Perhaps the number of third-party .NET apps that officially run on Linux is pretty small; it's hard to get numbers for these things (especially for in-house work which is much more than half of all development).

Re:Yay Miguel (0, Troll)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467629)

I meant track record in terms of technical achievement

Well golly gee whiz... good for him. He reinvented something else that no one is using and that the initial vendor won't help support (even with his lips tightly wrapped around their ass). What a great technical achievement. Lets all stand up and clap for him shall we. Then maybe he'll shut up and move on to something USEFUL.

Re:Yay Miguel (0, Troll)

molarmass192 (608071) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467871)

Yep ... bang on. Mono is about as compatible with .Net as JavaScript is with Java. It's a waste of effort in my eyes, but, they can work on whatever they want, doesn't mean I'm ever going to use it.

Re:Yay Miguel (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467911)

I've got to say this is my issue with the 'reimplement MS tech' - what else could you have done with all those resources that a) truly innovated, b) did something open and free, c) did something better.

People do go on about this for other OSS projects - why make another CD Burner when you could contribute to an existing project. I think the consensus is that people create OSS projects for the "glory", you don't get quite the same amount of kudos for being 'just another contributer'. I'm not sure if Miguel falls into this category with the backing of Novell, but I'm sure they could have invested those resources for a much better return.

Re:Yay Miguel (5, Insightful)

PastaLover (704500) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467967)

They have an awesome track record of coming up short. Like the winforms support that is still coming up short! He himself stated in the interview that moonlight will be like a "light version" of silverlight. So us linux desktop users are supposed to remain first-class citizens on the web by using a second rate, braindamaged implementation of a new, unproven web technology by Microsoft of all places? Hah!

I just find it's terribly dumb (4, Insightful)

rbanffy (584143) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466459)

I just find it's terribly dumb to let both your specification and the reference implementation to be under the control of your worst enemy.

I love Gnome and I understand Mono is a somewhat simpler (than C++) way to build programs for it, but is it really necessary?

As for Silverlight... Yuck.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466599)

I just find it's terribly dumb to let both your specification and the reference implementation to be under the control of your worst enemy.

The point is that Microsoft is "your worst enemy", not Miguel's.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466753)

As for Silverlight... Yuck.

"Yuck" because Silverlight comes from Microsoft, or because you understand the differences between it and Flash? Care to dissect what is so yucky?

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466847)

Not likely, I'd imagine... it just has the Microsoft name on it so he hates it.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24467825)

Miguel, relax and stop having conversations with yourself already!

brand recognition (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24468343)

Hey. Brand recognition cuts both ways.

If you make things that suck badly enough for a long enough period of time, your company gets known as a maker of sucky products.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (2, Insightful)

rbanffy (584143) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467149)

Yuck because it's not needed (there are other ways to build rich internet applications and using a semi-proprietary solution is not the way to foster development of an open one), not particularly elegant (Flash is much worse, but that's not the point here) and also because Microsoft controls it and is free to steer it any way they please (and that, probably, won't please me).

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (4, Insightful)

mike260 (224212) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467961)

there are other ways to build rich internet applications

To clarify, you are talking about Flash here, right? If there's another comparable alternative, please correct me.

Anyway, to summarise your post:

1) Don't use Silverlight, use Flash
2) Flash is worse than Silverlight.
3) I hate Microsoft.

(1)+(2) = nonsense, leaving (3) which answers the GP's question nicely.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24468003)

remember open != elegant...and to say that another option is unneeded just closed minded. You say you like gnome...using your way of thinking gnome should have never existed because it was unneeded and there were other solutions already available. Proprietary software has its place in fueling creativity and innovation...It may not always be the best solution, but in many cases it may just be.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466857)

derStandard.at: But aren't you actually validating Silverlight by that and driving adoption?

de Icaza: That's what some people want you to believe. But I don't think that's the case. Linux on the desktop is still a very small amount of people. If you believe that getting the Linux desktop people happy is what you need to validate a technology, you have lost a sense of proportion.

I mean - how many people outside of the technology world really know about Linux at the moment. And even the Mozilla guys - the keynote we had here was done on a mac, every single Mozilla developer uses a Mac. And it's funny, they constantly attack Silverlight, they constantly attack Flash and then all of them use proprietary operating systems, they don't seem to have a problem doing it. And then they had the Guiness record thing for Firefox 3 and you went to the website and it had a flash map to show where people are downloading - so there definitely is a double standard here. And that's after all their claiming that you can do everything in AJAX - so they definitely don't "walk the walk".

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (1)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466859)

Keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (2, Funny)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467013)

In another version, "keep your enemies in a small .jar on your desk."

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (1)

mike260 (224212) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467025)

I love Gnome and I understand Mono is a somewhat simpler (than C++) way to build programs for it, but is it really necessary?

Dunno about 'necessary', but .net and C# are good stuff, and I think it's good that they're available on non-Microsoft platforms.

I just find it's terribly dumb to let both your specification and the reference implementation to be under the control of your worst enemy.

By this logic, AMD should stop making x86 CPUs. BTW, it's not nice to call people dumb, especially when the evidence is overwhelmingly against it.

As for Silverlight... Yuck.

I presume that 'yuck' is entirely an expression of your feelings towards Microsoft, and not about anything concrete.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (0)

renoX (11677) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467655)

>>I love Gnome and I understand Mono is a somewhat simpler (than C++) way to build programs for it, but is it really necessary?
> Dunno about 'necessary', but .net and C# are good stuff[cut]

That's debatable, a clone of Java isn't that much interesting IMHO.

>>I just find it's terribly dumb to let both your specification and the reference implementation to be under the control of your >> worst enemy.
>By this logic, AMD should stop making x86 CPUs.

Mmmh, x86 the ISA isn't totally under the control of Intel, as shown by the x86-64 extension that AMD made and that Intel was forced to take. For the rest, do you remember that AMD has initiated a lawsuit against Intel for 'monopoly abuse'?

>BTW, it's not nice to call people dumb, especially when the evidence is overwhelmingly against it.

MDI is clearly a very good programmer, but he hasn't shown that his viewpoint about Microsoft dumb is reasonable..

>>As for Silverlight... Yuck.
>I presume that 'yuck' is entirely an expression of your feelings towards Microsoft, and not about anything concrete.

Or maybe his disgust about yet another proprietary solution, but hey you're free to take the hook.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24467691)

Very well done.. The check is in the post.

Bill.

Re:I just find it's terribly dumb (1)

zsau (266209) | more than 5 years ago | (#24468011)

I love Gnome and I understand Mono is a somewhat simpler (than C++) way to build programs for it, but is it really necessary?

Of course not. If Python's not to your liking, check out Vala [gnome.org], which is a programming language influenced by C# and designed for Gtk+. Kinda like a free software "embrance, extend", only done properly and without the traditionally implied ", extinguish".

ah miguel, assimmilator of idealists/do-gooders (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466469)

phewww. the lights are coming up all over now. conspiracy theorists are being vindicated. some might choose a tin umbrella to go with their hats. the fairytail is winding down now. let your conscience be yOUR guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

http://news.google.com/?ncl=1216734813&hl=en&topic=n
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/31/opinion/31mon1.html?em&ex=1199336400&en=c4b5414371631707&ei=5087%0A
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/29/world/29amnesty.html?hp
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/06/02/nasa.global.warming.ap/index.html
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/weather/06/05/severe.weather.ap/index.html
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/weather/06/02/honore.preparedness/index.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/01/opinion/01dowd.html?em&ex=1212638400&en=744b7cebc86723e5&ei=5087%0A
http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/06/05/senate.iraq/index.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/17/washington/17contractor.html?hp
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/03/world/middleeast/03kurdistan.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin
http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/080708/cheney_climate.html

is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=weather+manipulation&btnG=Search
http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=video+cloud+spraying

dictator style micro management has never worked (for very long). it's an illness. tie that with life0cidal aggression & softwar gangster style bullying, & what do we have? a greed/fear/ego based recipe for disaster. meanwhile, you can help to stop the bleeding (loss of life & limb);

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/28/vermont.banning.bush.ap/index.html

the bleeding must be stopped before any healing can begin. jailing a couple of corepirate nazi hired goons would send a clear message to the rest of the world from US. any truthful look at the 'scorecard' would reveal that we are a society in decline/deep doo-doo, despite all of the scriptdead pr ?firm? generated drum beating & flag waving propaganda that we are constantly bombarded with. is it time to get real yet? please consider carefully ALL of yOUR other 'options'. the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption. fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way. the little ones/innocents must/will be protected. after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit? for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available. 'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet, & by your behaviors. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable. some of US should consider ourselves somewhat fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate. it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc.... as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis. concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order. 'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

meanwhile, the life0cidal philistines continue on their path of death, debt, & disruption for most of US. gov. bush denies health care for the little ones;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/10/03/bush.veto/index.html

whilst demanding/extorting billions to paint more targets on the bigger kids;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/12/bush.war.funding/index.html

& pretending that it isn't happening here;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article3086937.ece
all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven

(yOUR elected) president al gore (deciding not to wait for the much anticipated 'lonesome al answers yOUR questions' interview here on /.) continues to attempt to shed some light on yOUR foibles. talk about reverse polarity;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article3046116.ece

MS Shill 2008 (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466521)

The MS Excel XML format stores dates as a floating point[1] rather than something standard like, oh, ISO format. Miguel De Icaza thinks that's a good idea. Kind of says it all.

  1. The number of years since 1900 (or 1901, depending) with the number of days since January 1 as the fractional part. Or something completely implementation specific that might have made sense in 1986.

My lunch is coming back up.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24466601)

Only people who make me want to puke more are lawyers so he's in very good company.

Free software has to be libre something senor Miguel seems to be striving to destroy.

They must love him at Redmond or as they call him there 'Plan B.'

Re:My lunch is coming back up.. (-1, Troll)

Anarke_Incarnate (733529) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466955)

I like Novell and SUSE, but Miguel is generally an ass clown who loves to further himself, not open source, as well as his own aggrandizement

What's Novell Doing? (5, Insightful)

mpapet (761907) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466663)

1. One has to give some credit to Miguel for thinking big and at least attempting to do it. The way he's doing it is perilous and I can see why some in the OSS crowd fault the guy. The odds are working against him. Strongly so.

2. He's convinced Novell this is something to spend/make money with. He's got a 40-person head count and it is totally unclear to me how Novell ***makes money**** on this to support such a large dev team. If they turned themselves into a 40-person contract dev group, I don't see customers clamoring for a dual-platform solution.

Even if his projects are widely adopted, there's no way I can see that Novell can make money at it. Which still makes Novell operating in run-off mode until the last netware(?) customer quits.

Hmm. (1)

apodyopsis (1048476) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466681)

Oh dear, I predict much MS bashing here.

I have no problem with MS trying to make money of Silverlight, OOXML or any of their proprietary standards, I simply want the option to choose not to use them. I also would like to see better informed decisions by major players on which standards to use.

My belief is that eventually people will choose truly open standards because, fundamentally, they are better (this is my personal viewpoint, feel free to differ and debate).

I would even support MS standards if they did not have a proven history of subverting standards ("embrace" and "extend").

Fortunately I think the days when they can replace any existing standard with their own by simply making it default on their own platform and using monopolistic pressure for force adoption are drawing to an end. The OOXML story has proven that one, it can only get harder for them and even MS looks to be using ODF.

Any standard that is well designed, well documented and no one entity has control over subsequent revisions get my vote.

Oh dear, that ending a bit more of a rambling rant then I intended. Sorry!

It's A Trap (4, Insightful)

Mprx (82435) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466691)

http://www.gnome.org/~seth/blog/mono [gnome.org]
As this blog post explains, while the current software patent situation exists, Mono is an unacceptable risk.
  1. Microsoft's C#/CLI licensing people, at high levels, are aware of us.
  2. Microsoft can choose to do damaging things in the current C#/CLI licensing ambiguity.
  3. Microsoft considers the free software / Linux community to be a major competitive threat
  4. Microsoft does not "compete" gently
  5. A + B + C + D = ?

Re:It's A Trap (2, Interesting)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466935)

http://www.gnome.org/~seth/blog/mono [gnome.org] As this blog post explains, while the current software patent situation exists, Mono is an unacceptable risk.

What makes Mono an 'unacceptable risk' but allows Wine to become one of the most often praised open source projects on Slashdot?

Mono vs Wine (4, Informative)

js_sebastian (946118) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467203)

http://www.gnome.org/~seth/blog/mono [gnome.org]

As this blog post explains, while the current software patent situation exists, Mono is an unacceptable risk.

What makes Mono an 'unacceptable risk' but allows Wine to become one of the most often praised open source projects on Slashdot?

Wine can be used to run those few windows apps for which you do not have no linux replacement, under linux. Mono is a development environment which could be used for just about anything... what if gnome, or some important gnome apps, got ported to Mono, and the day after Microsoft comes up with the bill?.. or with usage restrictions of some kind... Please read the link in the parent post, before replying... Here it is again:

http://www.gnome.org/~seth/blog/mono [gnome.org]

Re:Mono vs Wine (-1, Redundant)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467285)

I read the link the first time, and again I will ask - why mono and not wine?

Re:Mono vs Wine (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467347)

Because Wine lets people play games, while Mono is a programming framework. Anything software related from Microsoft has to be instantly hated ;)

Re:Mono vs Wine (4, Insightful)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467593)

People develop for Mono and many want it to become a standard part of GNU/Linux distributions. Wine is generally used as a last resort to run non-native applications, and has always been considered optional (well, except by Lindows/Linspire - does anyone use that any more?)

You develop for Mono because applications can run under it as fully integrated with the environment they run upon. You don't develop for Wine because your applications will look utterly stupid and feel completely unintegrated on every platform except Windows.

If Wine is a roaring success, and Microsoft brings the hammer down on it, the only people who suffer are commercial entities who refuse to develop GNU/Linux-native applications, and the occasional user who cannot find a free alternative to their favoured proprietary app.

If Mono is a roaring success, large swathes of the open source spectrum will become reliant upon it. If Microsoft brings the hammer down, it will no longer be possible to run the majority of free and open source applications on a free and open source operating system.

Re:Mono vs Wine (3, Informative)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467715)

Because no one (sensible) is advocating using WINE for new cross-platform development. WINE is a legacy support tool. People are advocating developing new applications with Mono. If people started advocating using WINE as a toolkit for new development on *NIX then there would almost certainly be similar complaints. If there are patent issues with WINE and Microsoft kills it, then people lose legacy app support. If there are patent issues with Mono and Microsoft kills it then people lose new apps. If people write new apps targeting WINE then they expose themselves to the same potential risk (less so, because most of WINE implements APIs that are almost certainly not covered by patents), and so no one is suggesting adopting WINE as a framework for new developing new parts of GNOME.

The entire point of the article is that Mono should not be integrated into GNOME. Exactly the same argument could be made for not integrating WINE into GNOME, but since no one is advocating doing this, no one feels the need to post things arguing against it.

Mono and Wine (1)

Kaseijin (766041) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467457)

What makes Mono an 'unacceptable risk' but allows Wine to become one of the most often praised open source projects on Slashdot?

Not even the Wine developers advocate using it to write new programs.

Re:It's A Trap (1)

goldsaturn (1220086) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467259)

That's a really old blog post (2004), even before a lot of the Novell Microsoft noncompetition agreements. They seem to be playing nice so far. They've got to get C# developers somehow. Where better than leeching from the *NIX community?

2004 called... (1)

metamatic (202216) | more than 5 years ago | (#24468099)

Nice theory, but in practice the GNOME desktop includes Mono, so apparently the devs changed their minds.

JavaScript (4, Insightful)

MrMunkey (1039894) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466725)

I found this statement somewhat interesting

I personally do not want to build my applications on Javascript. I think that its a) slow b) ugly and c) spaghetti code, right?

He definitely has a point with A. and some with B. (though it's a matter of opinion), but C. is just FUD. He obviously doesn't understand JavaScript (not the DOM, JavaScript is not just the DOM). JavaScript can produce very elegant code if you know what you're doing. I'm sure you can get some pretty nasty C# spaghetti code too (though it may not be as likely). I doubt that any language will replace JavaScript any time soon. All the different browsers would have to support whatever replaces it almost simultaneously. Flash is getting close, but it seems the community is treating Silverlight as a "me too" offering from MS. /rant

His comments about Mozilla are pretty interesting. I appreciate the work on Mono that they've been doing, but it's still strange to be at the mercy of MS whenever they make a change to their setup. That alone will leave Mono/Moonlight at least one step behind and could be used as an argument for only using Windows.

Re:JavaScript (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467235)

I'd go out on a limb and say there is no language where you couldn't make "spaghetti code". For the record, yes, C# has goto and labels. From MSDN itself: (modded slightly cause I hate open brackets on a line by themselves.)

// statements_goto.cs // Nested search loops
using System;
public class GotoTest1 {
      public static void Main() {
            int x = 200, y = 4;
            int count = 0;
            string[,] myArray = new string[x,y]; // Initialize the array:
            for (int i = 0; i < x; i++)
                  for (int j = 0; j < y; j++)
                        myArray[i,j] = (++count).ToString(); // Read input:
            Console.Write("Enter the number to search for: "); // Input a string:
            string myNumber = Console.ReadLine(); // Search:
            for (int i = 0; i < x; i++)
                  for (int j = 0; j < y; j++)
                        if (myArray[i,j].Equals(myNumber))
                              goto Found;

            Console.WriteLine("The number {0} was not found.", myNumber);
            goto Finish;

      Found:
            Console.WriteLine("The number {0} is found.", myNumber);

      Finish:
            Console.WriteLine("End of search.");
      }
}

Re:JavaScript (2, Insightful)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467253)

Javascript has a low barrier to entry, so there's a lot of crap code (and crap coders). The same is true of VB and PHP. But you can do a lot of really elegant things in JavaScipt (not true of php or vb). Builtin regexp, first class functions, closures, extend classes at runtime... It can be procedural, it can be functional, it can be OO.

Oh, and Flash uses ActionScript which is... JavaScript. And Silerlight presumably could use JScript.Net.

Re:JavaScript (1)

molarmass192 (608071) | more than 5 years ago | (#24468059)

Flash is JavaScript-like, it's not JavaScript per se. There are a quadrillion extensions in there that aren't in JavaScript.

Re:JavaScript (1)

Myen (734499) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467279)

Umm, isn't Flash JavaScript (err, ECMAScript variant) anyway? No matter how much Flash manages to beat JS, it'd still be there; see Tamarin (Adobe working on a JS engine with Mozilla).

Re:JavaScript (4, Informative)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467835)

JavaScript is not slow. Most implementations of JavaScript are fairly slow because (like Ruby) they use direct AST execution, which is very slow. This is done deliberately, because startup time is more important than execution speed for most scripts on the web. The new WebKit JavaScript has a bytecode interpreter, which is quite fast (about as fast as most Smalltalk implementations).

Semantically, JavaScript is very close to Self, and implementations of Self were running at about 50% of the speed of the same algorithm implemented in C++ back in the '90s. These days we'd probably call that 'fast'.

JavaScript has a lot of advantages. It's got a fairly nice Self/Io style object model, first-class closures, and a huge number of people who know it. Supporting JavaScript's object model was one of the design goals for the Etoile Objective-C runtime library, and I hope to have it supported as a first-class development language by Etoile 0.6 (I wrote a Smalltalk JIT that uses the same object model as Objective-C for 0.4 and a lot of the code can be reused to support JavaScript).

Re:JavaScript (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24468113)

JavaScript can produce very elegant code if you know what you're doing.

That's awful kind of you, but really I don't know what gave you the idea that I know what I'm doing...

get over it (-1, Flamebait)

justleavealonemmmkay (1207142) | more than 5 years ago | (#24466933)

Nobody uses .Net; nobody will ever use Silverlight. Their only reason for existence is that Java and Flash were not invited at Microsoft.

Re:get over it (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467301)

I use .Net and in some situations I prefer it over Java. I use Linux as well. I severely doubt I'll be using Silverlight any time soon, though, as I try to avoid using Flash where possible.

The only reasons .Net exists are because Microsoft needed an up-to-date language for developers who use Visual Studio, because Java was old and someone needed to give it a clean start, because Java takes a slightly different approach to C++ in some places (so C# can get migrating C++ developers) and because they wanted a real "write lots of languages to a single base and port anywhere" language.

Much ado about nothing? (1)

walterbyrd (182728) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467183)

Seems to me that practically nobody uses Mono, or plans to do so.

Re:Much ado about nothing? (1)

cloakable (885764) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467611)

Apart from Migue De Icaza. He'd probably love it if Gnome were to be rewritten in Mono.

Re:Much ado about nothing? (1)

Shados (741919) | more than 5 years ago | (#24468047)

No one uses Mono in the fanboy-heavy businesses, such as web development, and the people that go toward Mono tend to be .NET Ninjas (since you have to know it well to deal with the quirks and stuff), so you won't see them on discussion forums all that much.

At the last place I worked (a .NET shop), it was pretty scary how many of our competitors were using Mono for their back end, to the point we considered switching too (didn't from lack of ressources). .NET stuff sells well to gullible CEOs, and .NET stuff that can be scaled up horizontally for the cost of a cluster of commodity hardware sells REALLY well.

Or so they say, I never used Mono myself, but said competitors were growing faster than us, customer-base wise, so meh.

Do you honestly believe that the open source (1)

Hohlraum (135212) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467221)

or gnome community will ever get behind microsoft sponsored technologies?

Whether anyone wants to admit it one of the major driving forces behind the creation of gnome was simply because QT wasn't completely free.

I really don't see it ever happening. There are way too many good technologies out there to adopt that don't have the baggage.

Re:Do you honestly believe that the open source (0, Offtopic)

nawcom (941663) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467493)

News update: Qt (Not QT, but Qt) is now completely GPLed (v3) [trolltech.com]. People type in QT like it's a damn acronym or something; makes me ponder why they never get it straight.

Re:Do you honestly believe that the open source (1)

metamatic (202216) | more than 5 years ago | (#24468195)

The GNOME team already got behind Microsoft technologies. Mono ships as part of the GNOME desktop, it's required for running Tomboy and F-Spot.

!flamebait (3, Insightful)

mlwmohawk (801821) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467399)

Sorry, it isn't flame bait. To some it may be, but this is my honest opinion.

Microsoft's actions on OOXML, alone, show that it can not be trusted to play fair. I see no rational reason why the open source movement should validate *any* of their technology without a clear and unambiguous free and open license and a durable specification that does not become a never ending game of catch up.

Microsoft is the enemy of innovation and open source/free software.

re-implement Gnome in Moonlight? (1)

multi io (640409) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467505)

Wow, now he wants to re-implement the Gnome Panel, file manager and Evolution in Moonlight. Has he finished implementing them in Mono already? This is kinda funny -- every time Microsoft comes up with some new technology, Miguel scrambles to write a clone of it, then goes on to re-implement Gnome in that. Reimplementing stuff is so much fun [jwz.org] anyway! If MS wants to halt all actual progress in Gnome, all have to do is churn out new hype technologies every 12 months or so.

err (4, Insightful)

Vexorian (959249) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467851)

Miguel de Icaza: "We could refresh the look and feel of the entire desktop with Moonlight"

Translation: We'll try to make the whole desktop dependent on a MS standard.

Interview: Mono leader criticizes double standards when it comes to the open web and talks about future developments and the increasing openness at Microsoft

The increasing openness of these guys? [slashdot.org]

The problem with 3.5 is, that it includes 3.0 where they basically dumped a bunch of libraries that are not really part .Net

You meant MS changed the whole definition of what is part of .net to include stuff not covered by OSP or that are not portable? Shocker.

Also one thing that is very unique: Microsoft is going to be distributing an add-on to Moonlight called the "media pack" And that add-on contains all the media codecs that Silverlight uses, so it contains the MP3 decoder, the VC1 decoder, WMV and all that stuff. We are going to provide Moonlight and they are adding the codec parts - and this is going to be totally legal, it's something that they are actually encouraging - that's pretty sweet

Moonlight is going to require a proprietary addon in order to actually interoperate with silverlight, pretty sweet.

For every distribution, also x86, x86_64 and PowerPC. In fact we are going to provide binaries for BSDs, for Solaris - both on SPARC and Intel.

Same old, you'll have to download them from MS and only MS, and SLED will be the only distro one able to ship them. Oh, it looks like Icaza actually confirms so in page 2.

I hope so. It might end up that at some point Microsoft just open ups .NET

hahahahahha

you get C#, you get a DLR (Dynamic Language Runtime), you get a fantastic graphics engine with a fantastic animation framework, you get video, you get audio, multi-language compatibility and so on and so forth. And I get a JITted language also, and a static language with dynamic features that beats Javascript out of the water.

As a hacker you get Microsoft, Microsoft, compatibility to Microsoft languages, and Microsoft. And beating javascript with Microsoft.

As websites start using Silverlight we don't want Linux to be in a position where you can't access those websites. Also we thought Silverlight will be important enough and have enough market share just because it is Microsoft doing it

Specially after the free, false advert of 'silverlight works in Linux' thanks to moonlight.

I mean - how many people outside of the technology world really know about Linux at the moment.

Typical MS fanboyism from Icaza

And even the Mozilla guys - the keynote we had here was done on a mac, every single Mozilla developer uses a Mac.

Diverting attention are we?

And it's funny, they constantly attack Silverlight, they constantly attack Flash and then all of them use proprietary operating systems, they don't seem to have a problem doing it. And then they had the Guiness record thing for Firefox 3 and you went to the website and it had a flash map to show where people are downloading - so there definitely is a double standard here.

Icaza here's the deal: AT least FLASH is NOT FREAKING MICROSOFT! Don't you get it? call it a double standard if you want, just missing all the previous record of Microsoft's anticompetitive actions and the clear intent to take over the world with .net and how Mono makes Linux threated by it... It is getting ridiculous.

And that's after all their claiming that you can do everything in AJAX - so they definitely don't "walk the walk".

Mozilla is evil therefore we'll help poisoning the web with Silverlight, fuck open standards.

That worked so well for OS/2... (1)

argent (18001) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467933)

The business side explanation is that we want to make sure that Linux remains a first class citizen on the web. As websites start using Silverlight we don't want Linux to be in a position where you can't access those websites. Also we thought Silverlight will be important enough and have enough market share just because it is Microsoft doing it.

Replacing the open-systems UNIX API with the Microsoft controlled .NET API is awfully reminiscent of how IBM made OS/2 such a popular desktop.

Open Source Leads by Microsoft Example (1)

mgiuca (1040724) | more than 5 years ago | (#24467939)

Did we not just have an article [slashdot.org] in which Microsoft claimed OSS were copying all their ideas and not innovating? We all scoffed and had a good ol' laugh at Microsoft, how silly they are to see OSS in that light!

And now it seems the future of the web is to try implementing their standards. Miguel even admits that it isn't open enough for him to implement all of it. Talk about innovation, or lack thereof.

This reminds me of a movie quote... (3, Funny)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 5 years ago | (#24468331)

"Bill, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship."

Icazablanca. Coming soon to your local theater.

Gnome and Mono flame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24468373)

[...] Miguel de Icaza of Gnome and Mono flame.

Freudian misread.

Let's be frank: his unconditional love of M$ is really inflammatory.

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