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MS .net vs Mono, Open Source

timothy posted more than 11 years ago | from the mmmm-patents dept.

Patents 243

vinsci writes "Sometimes, reader comments to reporter-written stories are just as good as the stories themselves. Such as David Mohring's comment yesterday on ZDNet.com's story Mono & .Net: The odd couple. Since Microsoft are now using their licensing terms to stop GPL and LGPL free software, it would be a welcome sign of free software maturity at Microsoft if they actually resolved the Mono issue. The gist of his comment: 'Microsoft's CEOs have made it 'patently' clear that they intend to restrict competing .Net implementations by cultivating Microsoft's patents, [...] Mono also implements parts of .NET that have NOT been submitted to ECMA and ISO standards. Those parts of Mono lack even the protection for IP infringement with re-implementation that ISO documentation licensing implies. [...] There [are] those that claim that .NET is open to re-implementation, but until Microsoft make a simliar public legal declaration to Sun's JSPA, any .NET re-implementation represents a pending legal mindfield.' While on the subject of C# development, users of the GPL'd C# development environment SharpDevelop may also want to try Eclipse together with the Open Source Improve CSharp plugin for Eclipse. Eclipse also support C/C++ these days using GCC and GDB, thanks to the CDT. There are about two hundred add-on plugins available for Eclipse. Eclipse itself is available for many platforms, including Linux with native GTK 2 support."

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243 comments

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2nd fp today (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4957873)

fnord fnord
fnord

ok, so I need a life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4957881)

I'm on the computer mainly to stay out of the way in the kitchen :-) Meanwhile, whay are *you* guys doing posting Slashdot articles on Christmas, unless you're in New Zealand or somewhere that thinks it's already tomorrow?

Re:ok, so I need a life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958239)

Not everyone celebrates Christmas.

Merry Christmas (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4957875)

Merry Christmas, Jennifer.
I love and miss you.
*hugs*

Re:Merry Christmas (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958570)

I will keep her company. In fact I am on my way to the shower, where she is currently masturbating.

She doesn't miss you, however.

Wow. (1, Redundant)

Karamchand (607798) | more than 11 years ago | (#4957889)

Two stories, both posted at 4:09. I never ever saw two stories with zero comments before.

Re:Wow. (1, Redundant)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958229)

Maybe that's why they put this one back in the queue for 5:59pm ET.

Last week plague of dupes,now disappearin' stories (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958285)

I did a refresh of the front page and the story disappeared for an hour. I thought that either Microsoft had already taken legal action or it was a latent Y2K bug. Or maybe a little too much of the Christmas cheer in the Slashdot bunker.

WTF? RTFM! FAQ! LOL! (1)

SirDaShadow (603846) | more than 11 years ago | (#4957892)

Argh...too many acronyms! Can someone point me to a document (you thought I would say FAQ? :) ) that can explain in THE MOST SIMPLE TERMS, what all those concepts mean?
I am an old school programmer, and would like to know a little bit more about the wonderful world of OO. (ARGH!)

Re:WTF? RTFM! FAQ! LOL! (1)

SweetAndSourJesus (555410) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958308)

Try Acronym Finder [acronymfinder.com] or the Internet Acronyms Dictionary [gaarde.org] .

Re:WTF? RTFM! FAQ! LOL! (2, Interesting)

SirDaShadow (603846) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958369)

yes but I would like to know the fundamentals...why should I use C#? what is C#? why .net or mono? why is all this technology going to benefit me/the consumer/my employer?

Re:WTF? RTFM! FAQ! LOL! (2, Informative)

samael (12612) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958462)

I'd like to point you at an article I wrote for kuro5hin on the subject of .net:
http://www.kuro5hin.org/story/2002/10/2/430 59/0319

Microsoft's introduction is here:
http://msdn.microsoft.com/netframework/prod uctinfo /overview/default.asp

Mono's information is here:
http://www.go-mono.org/rationale.html

Jokes on Christmas? (1)

saskboy (600063) | more than 11 years ago | (#4957893)

"'Microsoft's CEOs have made it 'patently' clear..."

Next Microsoft will try to patent Santa Claus, right?

Santa Clause? Not Microsoft! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958298)

I'm sure that they detest him. They'd probably want to patent Scrooge.

Re:Santa Clause? Not Microsoft! (2, Funny)

D+iz+a+n+k+Meister (609493) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958315)

Yes Microsoft!! Santa gives things away, like some kind of commie bastard. They probably want all legal avenues at their disposal to stop this threat to their lively hood.

Yeah, yeah, I know. Santa Claus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958317)

I had barely brushed the submit button when I saw it. Now I have to sit in the corner for two minutes before I can correct myself.

There are no legal swpatents in Europe, yet! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958514)

Se more at swpat.ffii, also sign the Petition against swpats [noepatents.org] . An you should talk to your local representative.

GEE (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4957901)

I WONDER WHO WILL WIN IN THIS DISCUSSION

let me guess, anything thats communist open source shit software with no features and "stability" that doesn't exist because linux is made by 16 year old kiddies that program after they jack off to britney spears. fuck you linux.

Re:GEE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958228)

You seem to be a tad bitter.

Re:GEE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958264)

Of course not!!! It wil of course be the One OS to rule them all. After all, we all know that fat, sweaty execs make better software. Developers! Developers!! Developers!!!

Maybe one of those 16 year old kiddies can spare a *clean* cum rag for that fat bastard.

Huh? (0, Funny)

cube00 (524394) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958225)

"..it would be a welcome sign of free software maturity at Microsoft if they actually resolved the Mono issue."

What? Microsoft mature? ..nah

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958280)

"..it would be a welcome sign of free software maturity at Microsoft if they actually resolved the Mono issue."
Mono, a.k.a. The Kissing Disease
Can Microsoft catch Mono by kissing it's own .Net ass?

Interesting, but.... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958226)

What has this got to do with my penis?

Re:Interesting, but.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958292)

Dude.. Seems your penis is offtopic :)

The Devil (3, Informative)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958234)

.Net is MS proprietary. No way MS is going to let you run it in any useful way on non-MS operating systems.

If you plan to sup with the devil, it is best to bring a long spoon

Re:The Devil (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958304)

Microsoft is the Debil!!!

Re:The Devil (3, Insightful)

Rik van Riel (4968) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958320)

MS .Net (their implementation) is indeed the property of Microsoft. That doesn't mean they have a legal or moral right to stop other people from creating alternative implementations.

If copyright owners could determine the law, they wouldn't need to spend millions lobbying in Washington. The fact that they're lobbying like crazy illustrates the fact that users are bound by the law, not by the wishes of copyright holders.

Having said that, in this case software patents are a real threat to innovation by US programmers. This abuse of patents hurts the US public and is against the constitutional idea behind patents (the promotion of progress and innovation).

However, the open source community can't change patent law, so the only way to win this game is to follow the rules by the letter but creating the opposite result from what other players are doing. Maybe through something like a GPL for patents ?

Re:The Devil (2, Interesting)

spybreak (636509) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958341)

Actually there's a good discussion of this here [business2.com] .

It seems that Microsoft is quite encouraging of the Mono effort:

"Hats off to Icaza for getting as far as he has," says John Montgomery, who oversees the .Net Framework at Microsoft. Indeed, he practically gushes every time he hears Icaza's name. "Miguel is an incredibly sharp guy, and he is a pragmatist," Montgomery says. "I would put him in the top five of open-source thought leaders."

However the motives for this seem unclear... probably with all the bad press that MS has recieved lately they are frightened of appearing ani-competitive.

I guess that the big risk for Mono is that it exists in the legal grey area between the ECMA C# and the proprietary .NET. In this twilight area they are very much in Microsoft's shadow and at their legal whim.

agreed (4, Interesting)

exhilaration (587191) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958549)

I was at a Microsoft demo of .Net in New York before it was released. The speaker (a Microsoft head developer), when praising .Net, said that it would allow your software to run on multiple platforms. He said that Mono would allow you to run .Net apps on Linux, implying that it was a Good Thing (tm).

They're happy to see Mono progress. In the end, it'll help them sell more copies of Visual Studio and Windows XP Professional.

But what I'm afraid of is that if someday Microsoft is in bad shape and its profits start to drop, they'll go on a legal rampage and take down anyone that built software even remotely "like" theirs.

FUD? (2, Insightful)

Yeroc (125826) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958351)

I often see complaints about Microsoft spreading FUD about open source but this appears to be the reverse...spreading FUD about Microsoft. There's no evidence at this point that Microsoft is going to try to prevent the completion of the Mono project. In all likelyhood Mono will do little to threaten Microsoft's dominance anyhow...

Re:FUD? (3, Insightful)

Kunta Kinte (323399) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958400)

There's no evidence at this point that Microsoft is going to try to prevent the completion of the Mono project.

Yes true, but there's no evidence that they won't either. In business you don't start projects with "well, maybe they won't sue us...".

With any .NET implementation, Microsoft holds the patent card, heck they hold the copyright card as well; a whole lot of them.

Any .NET implemenation that is not officially sanctioned by Microsoft in a legally binding way is making a very risky bet.

I say, Either Miguel knows something we don't, or he is being a bit callous with Ximian VC money in this case.

Re:FUD? (2)

TummyX (84871) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958468)


Yes true, but there's no evidence that they won't either.


What about these facts?

- Mono has been around for over a year.
- Mono has been featured on MSDN.
- To the press, Microsoft has consistantly praised the Mono team.
- .NET is an ECMA and soon to be ISO standard.

Hmmmm

Re:FUD? (1)

GeekBoy (10877) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958502)

And how do we know that once mono has served it's purpose to them (showing that .net is a standard, and using mono to popularize the "technology"), that they then won't play the patent trump card once .net becomes widespread and required for decent functionality? Allowing .net technology to promulgate in the open source world could be it's death. If .net becomes a "web standard" and then MS kills it on open platforms, and refuses to supply their own implementation (or provides a crippled implementation) it would be a good way for them to drive people away from open source platforms, and back to windows. It could happen, and the fact that we have no guarentees either way means that "we" are taking a big risk on the good will of a company that is more known for killing off competitors than dispensing good will to them.

Re:FUD? (2)

mrkurt (613936) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958628)

The truth about .net is that the Common Language Infrastructure and the C# language are the only things that are ECMA standards. The Common Language Runtime, which lies at the heart of the .net framework, is a superset of CLI; so, like we have seen in the past, there are a lot of classes/APIs that may not be accessible to non-MS implementations of the CLI. You can have a Common Type System (which is the main component of CLI), but if you don't know which classes/functions on .net to access, what parameters they're expecting, etc., resolving to common types won't do much good. It's gonna depend on Microsoft, and how open they are. Their track record is not good on these matters, as we well know.

Re:FUD? (2, Interesting)

TummyX (84871) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958699)

You can have a Common Type System (which is the main component of CLI), but if you don't know which classes/functions on .net to access, what parameters they're expecting, etc., resolving to common types won't do much good


Uh. If there are undocumented classes (e.g. non public APIs) then they don't need to be implemented because noone uses them. If they're public they need to be documented for people to use them. You can also just call the methods and see the return values with various argument values.

Besides, who cares about Microsoft .NET APIs? The CLI is a good framework regardless of whether you use the Microsoft-only namespaces or not. GTK#, CsGL etc don't need to rely on any non-CLI classes.

The CLI is very much like C + CLIB. You can build proprietry non cross platform libraries on top of it (e.g. Win32) but you can also build open cross platform libaries with it (e.g. OpenGL). Noone is forcing you to use Windows only libraries (e.g. WinForms) when using .NET.

Mono may never be 100% compatible with MS.NET but that doesn't prevent it from being an extremely useful development framework.

Re:FUD? (1, Troll)

sheldon (2322) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958523)

"Yes true, but there's no evidence that they won't either."

There's no evidence that men from mars won't come storming through my front door and steal the Christmas goose.

Some day when you have a moment go to the dictionary and look up two words. The first is possible, the second is probable. In business you start projects all the time with "The probability of them suing us is slight", it's called risk management.

Re:FUD? (2)

Kunta Kinte (323399) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958663)

In business you start projects all the time with "The probability of them suing us is slight", it's called risk management.

Maybe that's just me, but I'd say risk management is keeping a balanced portfolio, or having a certain amount of your assets liquid.

I don't see implementing an agressive compeditor's patent protected standard as of managed risk. "Managed" risk implies that the risk was un-avoidable, I'd say. At any rate, it's Miguel's call, his money.

Gosh, the shared-source license the Microsoft's C# BSD source was released under even had an anti-GPL clause and was packed full of IP traps. How much more clearly can they say it?

Nice (1)

DopeRider (611535) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958532)

In all likelyhood Mono will do little to threaten Microsoft's dominance anyhow...

If it fails, they won't be sued. Stop caring.

Re:The Devil (2)

Sanity (1431) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958459)

.Net is MS proprietary. No way MS is going to let you run it in any useful way on non-MS operating systems.
Wow, this knee-jerk cliched reaction is what passes for +1 Insightful on Slashdot these days?

How sad.

Re:The Devil (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958482)

Wow, this knee-jerk cliched reaction is what passes for
+1 Insightful on Slashdot these days?

Switch Linux for MS in that comment, and it would have been -5 Troll.

Note: I'm not saying Linux is proprietary, my point is that any negative comment towards linux is modded down (as this one will be), while any anti-MS comment is modded up.

Re:The Devil (1)

JBhoy (630783) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958678)

"If you plan to sup with the devil, it is best to bring a long spoon"

Amen. But don't expect anybody at the Mono project to pay attention. Maybe they expect--and intend--to go to court over .NET. We shall see.

The night before....a poem (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958238)

'Twas the night before Goatse, when all through the house
Not a penis was stirring, not even with mouth;
The Giver was hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Goatse soon would be there;

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of anal-sex danced in their heads;
And Katz in his 'kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled down for a fuck in the sack.
When up in my anus there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see Katz start to splatter.
Away to the bathroom I flew like a flash,
Tore open my anus and looked at the gash.

The moon in the glass had a vibrant red glow
Gave the lustre of sunset to my nutsack below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer!

With a little old driver, so lively and quickse,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Goatse.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;

"Now, TACO! now, JAMIE! now, MICHEAL and TIMMY!
On, CHRISD! on HEMOS! on, PUDGEY and CLIFFY!
To the top of the ass! fronts to the the wall!
Now pound away! pound away! pound away all!"

As faggots that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with a hetero, mount the next guy,
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of sex-toys, and Goatse pics too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The moaning and pawing of each little poof.
As I drew in my ass, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Goatse came with a bound.

He was dressed as a furry, from his head to his feet,
And his clothes were all tarnished with urine and shit;
A bundle of sex-toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a hooker just flapping his sack.

His eyes -- how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His ass cheeks like roses, his cock like a cherry!
His cute little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his scrotum as white as the snow;

The stump of a blunt he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and was a bit smelly,
He shook, when he wanked like a bowlful of jelly.

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him beat off himself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings with smelly big turds,
He layed a big log right under my nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like a fucking great missile.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
"HAPPY GOATSE TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT!"

Re:The night before....a poem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958477)

*clap clap*
that was.. beautiful, man

Re:The night before....a poem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958617)

Fantastic! Merry christmas to you, sir!

if you drink enough free beer... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958256)

...open source is stereo

easy choice (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958265)

the commercial product will be better. The open sores version will be half done with missing pieces and crap documentation.

C# of the 2000s is the RPG of the 1970s (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958271)

Proprietary.

The use case is not compelling.

Those who spend money developing code in this space will at least have a prototype when they need to reimplement it in a language that has a long-term, portable future.

And no, this [oetrends.com] does not mean C# is still not fundamentally proprietary.

-- Multics

Re:C# of the 2000s is the RPG of the 1970s (2, Insightful)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958287)

We still have RPG code running in an emulator running on SCO. Costs us tons of money per year to maintain support for it. Hell, if we wanted to move it to Linux in an emulator, that would cost $20,000.

Any company which invests in proprietary programming lanugages must not expect to be around very long, or is happy giving a cut of the profits to other companies forever.

Burp (1, Offtopic)

Matey-O (518004) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958286)

Do you guys REALLY expect erudite conversation after Xmas Dinner?

Ummmmm, L-triptophan!

News? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958293)

Is there any real news here, or is this just idle speculation? The 'patently clear' evidence seems to be some troll's reaction to the news that Microsoft won't be using its patents against competing implementations of .NET.

Why have I only heard about Eclipse recently? (2)

Sanity (1431) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958294)

I was amazed when I first discovered Eclipse about two weeks ago, not so much because it is an extremely powerful piece of software, not because they have written a Swing replacement which looks amazing on both Windows and Linux, but because I went for so long without discovering such a product.

While Java is my main language, I have been doing some C# work recently using SharpDevelop, which is good, but still needs work. I can't wait to try out the C# plugin for Eclipse.

Re:Why have I only heard about Eclipse recently? (2)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958452)

If you like eclipse then you have to try devC++. [bloodshed.net]

No thanks MS, no thanks Miguel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958296)

Sun Microsystems has been very kind to me and my projects and I'll happily stick with them and Java.

No thanks MS, no thanks Miguel.

Re:No thanks MS, no thanks Miguel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958513)

So, the fact that java is an absolute nightmare from an end-user standpoint means... nothing, right? Sounds to me like you're making decisions for your clientele based upon what you want.

Sigh. Where have I heard that before?

Re:No thanks MS, no thanks Miguel (1)

JBhoy (630783) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958695)

So, the fact that java is an absolute nightmare from an end-user standpoint means... nothing, right?

Another pathetic Java-basher raises his head in a C# thread, opens his mouth, and burps up kaka...

Sigh. Where have I heard that before?

In the computer information systems lab at the b-school where you and rest of your luser buddies were trying to do bubble-sort with Visual Basic again?

How to bring Microsoft down (4, Interesting)

ShatteredDream (636520) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958297)

  1. My college has a cd that is distributed to every campusnet (campus network/ISP) user and that would be the perfect place to distribute OpenOffice and Mozilla. The one catch is that OpenOffice needs about another 6 months-1 year before it is mass-marketted. It needs to be able to feel mostly as slick as MS Office to the average Joe and needs OSX compatability to keep from luring people to only one OS.
  2. Lobby the hell out of the US government to switch to OpenOffice and shoot for compatability with Mozilla in all of its websites. Losing the US government will do severe damage to them as there are probably around 1.5-2M federal computers capable of running MS Office that would now be running OO. Also, the defense contractors would retool for OO to keep up compatability with the USDoD.
  3. Get BeOS open source and up to date! There is only one shot to get a major open source desktop out there for most people. They'll give switching away from MS probably one shot. Most /. nerds seem to forget that the average joe is not adventurous and will not take us seriously if we say, "come on, try it again." BeOS is very slick and easy to use. BeOS DE 1.1 is what I use half the time now on my 1 year old PC and it works very well. Push Palm to release R4.5, R5 or R6.
  4. And now, the craziest proposal *drum roll* Encourage IBM to buy Sun and Macromedia. Push them to open source a fork of the JDK and JDK EE under the GPL as a reference copy, submit the specs to ISO for everything from the basic java packages to the EE specs. To further hurt MS on the desktop, they could open source Dreamweaver similar to how QT is open sourced.

Just some thoughts. It's not impossible to take them down. I remember when one of our local guys got his cost analysis posted on slashdot (Rockingham County, Virgina). Start flashing those kinds of figures to the bean counters. You may not get many converts right away, but oh well. You have to start somewhere. I've gotten most of my technology-clueless relatives hooked on Mozilla because of its popup blocking ability. My neighbor across the street who is an accountant by trade loves OpenOffice and is looking into switching to RedHat 8. Again, it can be done. Just get them hooked on the Windows/Mac versions of OO, Mozilla, etc and switching to an open source platform will be easy.

As for Mono, MS Legal can't fight if they don't have money :)

Re:How to bring Microsoft down (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958596)

You can download BeOS 5 MAX (tweaked version) for free. I don't think it's open source though.

http://crux.sourceforge.net/nuke/modules.php?nam e= Downloads&d_op=viewdownload&cid=1

what does "mindfield" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958299)

The question I have is who is Microsoft gonna sue anyway? And what would it get them if they win? Certainly not money. If necessary there's always P2P for distributing the binaries. Also, is "mindfield" actually a word? I've heard of concepts like "mindshare" but I'm unfamiliar with this "mindfield" business. Can anyone enlighten me?

...if the comments were insightful, that is. (5, Interesting)

ajp (192328) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958300)

Microsoft has already written .NET for another platform (Rotor, for BSD.) And Microsoft has communicated with Miguel many times with regards to Mono. An interview with him on the topic is hosted on MSDN! This does not appear to be a prelude to a lawsuit.

What's the news item here? Fear-mongering about the Evil Microsoft? If you're worried about big companies with riduculous patents ruining society, worry about Amazon.

Re:...if the comments were insightful, that is. (5, Insightful)

Kunta Kinte (323399) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958360)

Microsoft has already written .NET for another platform (Rotor, for BSD.)

Yeah, and there was also Internet Explorer for Solaris, look how long that was supported.

And Microsoft has communicated with Miguel many times with regards to Mono

Why not communicate to the rest of the industry as to their intentions?

An interview with him on the topic is hosted on MSDN! This does not appear to be a prelude to a lawsuit.

An interview does not make a legal contract either.

Why send so much time and effort with no legal protections? All Mono has is the apparent "good will" of a company known for being overly aggressive to the point of breaking the law on occasion.

And that's not much!

Re:...if the comments were insightful, that is. (3, Informative)

RickHunter (103108) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958407)

Its worth noting that IBM had Microsoft's "good will" too. Then they got burned on OS/2, not once but twice. Once when Microsoft stole the code to make NT, and once when Microsoft threatened to stop selling IBM Windows if they continued their development efforts on any completing software. And they didn't break the law "on occasion", they broke it every single chance they got.

Sorry, but history shows that having Microsoft's "good will" is nothing more than a one-way ticket to an unpleasant death.

Re:...if the comments were insightful, that is. (1)

m_pll (527654) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958565)

IBM... when Microsoft stole the code to make NT...

Tell that to Dave Cutler [microsoft.com] and other guys from Digital who started working on NT in 1988. I'm sure they would be surprized to know that they stole their code from IBM.

Re:...if the comments were insightful, that is. (2)

rmohr02 (208447) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958683)

Hrmm. I feel like watching Antitrust again.

Re:...if the comments were insightful, that is. (3, Insightful)

Mansing (42708) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958461)

Hmmm ... let's look at some history, shall we?

Microsoft courted STAC, then killed them.
Microsoft courted Netscape, then killed them.
Micorsoft courted ... (fill in your own favorite now defunct company), then killed them.

Microsoft has never in it's history courted a competitor without either destroying the company through monopolistic practices or by suing them into oblivion.

The only survivor of a Microsoft attempt at technology murder is Java. And that was a close call.

I once lived near a legal mindfield... (3, Funny)

bman08 (239376) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958303)

...or so I thought. Turns out the hardworking mindfarmers were actually growing minds without a license. An illegal mindfield. Can you imagine?

Re:I once lived near a legal mindfield... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958499)

I hope those farmers were still allowed to use those minds for a mind is a terrible thing to waste

I like .net (1)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958307)

cause I picked it up as soon as it came out, and learned it. At least as far as visual studio is concerned. Now I get projects for bid for no other reason then 'it uses .net'. Its optimized for XP. whatever. I don't get what it is or might be, I think the open source thing is better... but it's one more thing for the competition to learn, and I learned it first... works for me.

open source? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958316)

you're a bunch of fruity god damned niggers

And this is newsworthy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958323)

Why? It comes up on Mono-List 69696969 times a week, and it's always explained in a calm, orderly fashion by Miguel and co. Some real news would be someone making a concious decision to stop the slashdot-backed FUDding to the people who are already convinced that if they ever boot back into their RedHat 7.2 partition from XP they'll love Mono for some reason they don't get understand, or end up getting arrested for using it.

Self assimilation (4, Insightful)

jlrowe (69115) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958328)

I still don't understand Mono. It didn't work for IBM to has OS/2 work for Windows programs, so why Mono?

Microsoft's strategy is to embrace, extend, and assimilate.

Isn't Mono just self assimilation? What does Microsoft have left to do if OSS just comits fratricide?

Re:Self assimilation (1)

Zeebs (577100) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958456)

Wait for regicide? What are the home addresses of RMS and Linus again?

Eclipse and SWT on Monster (1)

thammoud (193905) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958359)

SWT search yielded 3 jobs.2 with IBM. Swing yielded 300. Hmmm, I wonder which one I need to learn.

Hey, IBM, quit trying to splinter Java. fix swing rather than invest in an MFC lookalike called SWT.

Re:Eclipse and SWT on Monster (4, Insightful)

1000StonedMonkeys (593519) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958463)

Most users' experience with swing can be summed up with the following:

1. Open any swing application
2. Right click the mouse button somewhere a context menu should appear, or click on one of the file menus.
3. Wait 3 seconds
4. Form the incorrect conclusion that Java is slow
5. Go back to using native win32 programs

Sun's been trying to "fix swing" for the last 5 years, and they've had no luck. What makes you think IBM has the magic bullet?

Swing will never be fast. The same abstractions that make it such a joy to program with make it terribly inefficiant. Print out a stack trace in a event handler function in swing and take a look at how deep it is. Every one of those functions had to be called before the event was process, and ever call had to be done through a table lookup. I'll avoid going into the whole native vs. non-native widgets debate, but forgive me if I remain skeptical about the non-native approach sun has been using with swing.

IBM (well, the company that wrote eclipse that IBM bought) did the right thing when they started from scratch to design SWT. Eclipse is amazingly responsive when compared to any swing application I've seen. Try it out yourself, I think you'll be impressed.

Re:Eclipse and SWT on Monster (2, Interesting)

JBhoy (630783) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958716)

I do wish that SWT had its own documentation and a separate download though. It would make it easier to use.

I haven't observed that Swing is that slow under JDK 1.4. Most complaints about Swing being slow are based on earlier versions.

That being said, I'm interested in evaluating SWT. Still, Swing is a nice toolkit, and the fact that it is so ubiquitous makes it an easy choice to use it to write against.

This would especially be the case if the preliminary injunction is upheld and suddenly the Java Plug-In shows up on millions of computers. Swing applets are pretty cool. Still, you could bundle swt.jar with your applet I guess.

MS will be helped by Mono (2, Interesting)

sirshannon (616247) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958373)

Seriously. ASP.Net running on Linux will be the best thing that could happen to .Net, from the developers, to the clients, to MS.
If MS really wants to put the competition under, then .Net HAS to run on Linux.

Open Source Innovation (2, Insightful)

genkael (102983) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958381)

One question that I have is, "Why don't Open Source developers spend more time with their own creations and killer apps as opposed to ripping off what commercial companies have already created?" We see in a few instance that Open Source developers can do just that. Look at Apache, PHP, and MySQL for examples of packages that are unique, or not totally ripped off. Imagine what could be produced if OS developers actually built something truely unique!

Re:Know thy enemy (2)

symbolic (11752) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958441)

"Unique" isn't going to get linux where it needs to go - at least as a selling point. Linux needs to be able to "slip right in" so that users aren't forced to learn the idiosynchrasies associated with a different OS. The good thing about the way things are currently evolving is that Linux might be able to look and feel like 'doze as an out-of-the-box experience, but there's no reason that the unique stuff can't be available for those that dare (or even want) do stray from the beaten path. Forcing users into something "unique" as part of the overall Linux experience will probably drive more people away than it will help to convert.

Re:Open Source Innovation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958443)

Apache - A patchy server. That was someone elses code.

MySQL - an attempt at implementing SQL.

So much for 'innovation', looks more like the copying you are bashing.

Seriously, we need both (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958512)

"Why don't Open Source developers spend more time with their own creations and killer apps as opposed to ripping off what commercial companies have already created?"

I don't believe it's an either/or proposition. Do you honestly think there's a shortage of creative Open Source work? It seems to me that many more people are going for their own blue-sky ideas; so much so that I'm glad to see so many people are dedicated to more pedestrian (but more immediately useful) projects!

If people want to spend their time and effort making the MS interoperability systems they and others need to do their jobs, that's a good thing. If people want to spend their time and effort producing polished MS workalikes to help MS-raised users switch with the minimum amount of effort, even better.

The reason? Even super-programmers can't do everything. A large community of developers (yes, and users) is essential for working on more interesting stuff at the same time. An added bonus is a reduction in the pain associated with running a minority system -- e.g., wouldn't it be nice if all the latest games were available for Linux?

Everything we can do to make switching to Open Source easy will help us gain greater installed base in the short term -- which will make the task of those searching for the next killer app that much easier...

worry about Sun patents, not MS patents (5, Insightful)

g4dget (579145) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958387)

I have yet to see anybody identify Microsoft patents that are essential to ECMA C#, CLR, CLI, or .NET implementations. The one or two patents Microsoft likes to parade around are general patents pertaining to distributed systems. Even if they were to hold up in court, they would have no specific effect on C# implementations. And, given when ECMA C# was published, there can't be that much hidden in the pipeline. Furthermore, if, by some obscure legal twist they did threaten Mono, they'd also threaten every Java implementation in existence. An additional protection against patent issues with C#/CLR/CLI is that Microsoft was required to disclose patents that affect the implementability of the standard as part of the standardization process. And not only was Microsoft required to make such declarations as part of the standardization effort, so was every other ECMA member (which, I believe, includes Sun).

Sun's patents are much more worrisome as far as I'm concerned. For example, patent number 6,477,702 [uspto.gov] , held by Sun, would seem to be infringed by any conforming Java implementation. And Sun has pulled out of every and any process that would have required them to make a declaration or commitment on patent and IP issues related to Java. Furthermore, while Sun PR likes to talk a lot about openness, I have yet to see a legally binding declaration by Sun that would guarantee that third party implementations of Java may use Sun's patents.

I don't trust Microsoft any further than I can throw the entire stack of printed MSDN documentation (which is to say, I don't trust them at all). But, all things considered, I think the risk of patent infringment claims from Microsoft over Mono are very slim indeed. All that hot air from Microsoft CEOs and Microsoft PR folks doesn't change that. Sun, on the other hand, holds known patents that could create real problems for any non-Sun Java implementation.

If you are very worried about patent problems, there is a very easy solution: don't use either Mono or Java--there are plenty of other languages a round, many of them better. If you are slightly worried about patent problems, then Mono looks like a safer choice to me than Java. And probably, you don't really have to worry about patents with either of them.

We don't have to worry about Sun Java patents (2)

Kunta Kinte (323399) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958492)

(i) Sun has supported third party implentations to the point where they used a third party implementations themself. What's the original linux jvm a third party jvm ( name was black-something, I can't remember). IBM has had it's JVM for eons now. There are lots of embedded JVMs.

(ii) Sun has tolerated those implementations for years now.

(iii) In the past, Sun has never shown to be anti-competitive as microsoft. They don't defend or promote Solaris at any cost the way microsoft does.

you've been duped (4, Informative)

g4dget (579145) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958666)

(i) Sun has supported third party implentations to the point where they used a third party implementations themself. What's the original linux jvm a third party jvm ( name was black-something, I can't remember).

It's Blackdown Java. It is not a third party implementation. Sun simply dumped their source code onto a bunch of people outside Sun who then fixed a bunch of bugs and ported it to Linux.

IBM has had it's JVM for eons now. There are lots of embedded JVMs.

IBM does not have its own Java implementation--they have a license to Sun's Java implementation, and they replace some of Sun's components with their own.

(ii) Sun has tolerated those implementations for years now.

Sun hasn't tolerated anything. As far as I can tell, anybody who is shipping anything remotely resembling a Java platform implementation has a contractual agreement with Sun. In fact, merely to claim that something is Java, you need a contractual agreement with Sun (because of their trademark).

(iii) In the past, Sun has never shown to be anti-competitive as microsoft. They don't defend or promote Solaris at any cost the way microsoft does.

I see no basis for that statement. Sun simply isn't leveraging their monopoly because they don't have one. As a 15 year Sun customer, all the indications I have seen are that Sun is worse than Microsoft when it comes to cut-throat competition and intellectual property, they are simply not as successful.

Re:worry about Sun patents, not MS patents (2)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958526)

> If you are very worried about patent problems, there is a very easy solution: don't use either Mono or Java--there are plenty of other languages a round, many of them better.

Can you say Python [python.org] ? It has everything expected from Java: cross-platform (interpreted or bytecode), pure object orientation, lots of great libraries included. Plus it's Free and the syntax is very intuitive and powerful, it's arguably the fastest language when it comes to development time.

Re:worry about Sun patents, not MS patents (2)

JamesOfTheDesert (188356) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958547)

it's arguably the fastest language when it comes to development time.

Um, no. Try Ruby. Cleaner OO, too.

Re:worry about Sun patents, not MS patents (2)

g4dget (579145) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958691)

Python is a decent language. But it has a number of problems:
  • It does not have a clear cross-platform GUI (Tkinter doesn't work on OS X, wxPython isn't a standard part of the platform binary distributions).
  • Many packages rely on native code in shared libraries.
  • Python byte code is orders of magnitude slower than Java or C# code.
  • Python does not have optional static type checking.
  • It is hard to make standalone, self-contained applications out of it.
  • Python does not have a well-defined language standard, nor does it have multiple independent implementations.
Python could be more of a contender if someone built a good native code compiler for it. None of the current attempts are very good or result in much speedup.

The way it is, Python is good for many scripting and prototyping applications. But for a general-purpose, high-quality programming language, we still have to look elsewhere.

Let me get this straight... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958417)

Microsoft want to kill off any chance of their dream of .net programs running *anywhere*!??!!?

What's the point of learning .net then!?!?!?!?!?

Re:Let me get this straight... (2)

Eric Damron (553630) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958544)

Microsoft want's to control .NET completely. If enough people write .NET code they wouldn't want Linux to benefit more than their own OS.

The bottom line is we can't trust Microsoft to do anything other than what they have always done. Use their monopoly power to crush anything that even has the slightest chance of competing.

Has nobody read the ZDNet article? (3, Informative)

KAMiKAZOW (455500) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958429)

And de Icaza says he has unofficial word that in the coming weeks Microsoft plans to share .Net-related intellectual property. Pending review by Microsoft lawyers, he says, "Microsoft patents on technology developed specifically for .Net will be granted royalty-free to those trying to implement the spec."

Yeah, it says "unofficial", but don't spread FUD until there's some updated (the Ballmer quote is from March) official information.

.NET potability? (0, Insightful)

the_greywolf (311406) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958457)

correct me if i'm wrong, but isn't .NET supposed to be a "portable solution" that will work "across many platforms"? from what i can tell, M$ only wants it to work on 3 platforms: Windows Alpha, Windows ia32, Windows ia64.

well, as i've tld the people who ask me - i'll only develop with .NET when Mono is done, OR if M$ actually ports something to linux. in light of this, neither will happen anytime soon. so, i am that much more against .NET and all it represents.

what's the point of developing a "portable" app if it's only going to ever compile or run on 3 platforms? i can do that NOW with Visual Studio 6, as long as i choose to not use assembly code.

Re:.NET potability? (2)

mrkurt (613936) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958588)

I think you've got it right-- .net will only run on Windows, although I understand that they have ported a subset of the .net framework to FreeBSD. I would be very surprised if we ever see a port to anything else. Microsoft is just trying to pull more developers into developing for Windows and nothin' but. "Write in any language to run on Windows". Furthermore, they are using a backdoor approach to lock organizations into Windoze, by getting developers onto the bandwagon. This is why I am staying away from .net, or Mono, or DotGnu, because of the potential for IP challenges by MS. Plus, it forces me and my potential employers or clients into restricting our choices instead of increasing them. If you want me to develop on Windoze, its Visual Studio 6, or Python/Tkinter, or maybe even Java-- but not .net.

Some information for the lost and confused (3, Interesting)

samael (12612) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958469)

I'd like to point you at an article I wrote for kuro5hin on the subject of .net here [kuro5hin.org] .

Microsoft's introduction is here [microsoft.com] .

Mono's information is here [go-mono.org] .

I had a choice... (2, Funny)

sheldon (2322) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958484)

I could sleep off Christmas dinner, or relax in my chair reading slashdot.

Sleeping would have been more intellectually stimulating than reading this nonsense. I'll remember that next year.

Re:I had a choice... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958590)

reading the previous comment was more "intellectually stimulating" than reading your nonsense comment. I'll remember that next time I see a comment with "by sheldon (2322)" at the top.

MS patents (all patents) are a potential problem! (5, Insightful)

manyoso (260664) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958486)

Really folks, patents are a problem to Free Software in every project. No Free Software project is immune to these kind of concerns as well as other complicated interactions with corporations. Look at Samba which is every bit as susceptible to MS patents as Mono. Or how about OpenGL which has problems with corporate concerns. Sun has patents on Java. At least Microsoft is bound to the ECMA patent policy which is basically RAND with required disclosure.

Another important thing to understand is Mono isn't the only Free Software project out there that is implementing the ECMA standards. DotGNU/Portable.NET [dotgnu.org] has a large par t of the ECMA specs implemented and the design goal of PNet is ECMA not the rest of MS's .NET infrastructure ie, System.Windows.Forms, ASP.NET, ADO.NET. The wine project is another area with every bit the risk that Mono faces.

So the conclusion to draw from this is: Patents are a danger to Free Software in every direction! Not just this one particular project...

Don't forget dotGNU... (4, Interesting)

Lysol (11150) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958507)

I'm sure that'll get the RMS haters eyes rolling, but, dotGNU also deserves a mention. I know, cuz I'm a recent contributor to it. These guys have done a lot with fewer PR and resources than Ximian/Mono, but they're not as far along either.

They've actually done some stuff much different than Mono. For starters, their compiler is in C not C#. And it's able to general IL as well as Java bytecode and hs some other interesting approaches; not huge, but still very cool. One thing I find interesting with various OS vs. closed source projects - their approach.

From the code perspective, we read the Ecma spec and then crank out some code. If M$ has the entire spec patented as various 'processes' then I guess they could take the authors of Mono and dotGNU to court. It would be complicated tho and I'm sure there's already prior art out there for Strings, Input Buffers, Webservices, etc..

Frankly, I joined dotGNU because the Java tools are very mature and after working with them for the past 5 years, I'm really bored doing 'enterprise web apps'. There's much more fun, for me, in getting the foundation built; seeing how and if it will actually work. For me, all the top most layers are just fluff.

As far as ASP.NET goes, I'm actually thinking of something along the lines of a C# version of Java Servlets and JSPs. I've done ASP and I personally think it's pretty filthy. JSP can be just as much, but there are definitely more patterns applied to Servlets/JSPs than ASP. A C# implementation of the Servlet/JSP spec would be an interesting thing; and possible too! Altho, I obviously wouldn't be 'compliant', but could work the same with just a little different syntax.

Anyway, I finally realized that .NET can't be ignored. So if it's gonna be as big as J2EE (and it will) then there might as well be a some OS implementations out there for anyone and everyone to use. That will not really help M$ so much as it will make them work harder to justify using Windows as a platform when it can run just as well or better on others. Hats off to the Mono and dotGNU team for realizing this early on.

Third time lucky, will Microsoft listen (3, Insightful)

NZheretic (23872) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958522)

Yes, David Mohring is [google.com] NZheretic [slashdot.org] and I have posted that comment at least a couple of times before. [slashdot.org]

Also, I am not alone in my concerns about Microsoft's patent threat, even Red Hat Chairman and CEO Matthew Szulik has said [crn.com] that Microsoft's legal efforts to challenge open source by employing patent infringement law represent a big threat.

Microsoft could settle this issue by making a simliar public legal declaration to Sun's JSPA.

nails get hammered (2)

goon (2774) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958537)

add to this a bit of "Microsoft to Buy Rational and/or Borland? [slashdot.org] " (more informative article article [yahoo.com] - javatips (66293) [slashdot.org] ) and you get a better view of the options MS are working on.

Borland are developing their own architectural solution for .NET [borland.com] and remember Rotor already runs on FreeBSD [ondotnet.com] so borgifiying any of Borlands tools into a XP Visual Studio for Linux [microsoft.com] gives MS means to kill any competition - (Open source Mono classes [go-mono.org] ). Remember MS's MO is to set and 'own the standard'. Nails get hammered and Mono [go-mono.org] is a target.

People are you reading this!?! (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4958647)

from http://swpat.ffii.org/players/microsoft/index.en.h tml [ffii.org] :

Asked by CollabNet CTO Brian Behlendorf whether Microsoft will enforce its patents against open source projects, Mundie replied, "Yes, absolutely." An audience member pointed out that many open source projects aren't funded and so can't afford legal representation to rival Microsoft's. "Oh well," said Mundie. "Get your money, and let's go to court."
and
"Heise report about Steve Ballmer's talk at CeBit. At a speech event together with chancellor Schroeder, Ballmer says that Microsoft owns lots of patents which cover its new DotNet standard and that it aims to use them to prevent opensource implementations of DotNet. The key phrases read, in translation:"

Eclipse (1)

linux_warp (187395) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958686)

Anyone got any screenshots of Eclipse in action?

It is better to take than receive.... (1, Interesting)

uberdood (154108) | more than 11 years ago | (#4958690)

Let's check the list:
  • stole TCP/IP stack 'cause they couldn't write a decent stack of their own

  • stole kerberos 'cause they couldn't write a decent authentication protocol of their own

  • will continue to bite the hand that helps develop the code they will continue to steal 'cause they are too incompetent to develop it themselves
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