how nice, an editorial labeled as news

Story: Microsoft issues patent promise, dispels Mono legal concernsTotal Replies: 80
Author Content
tuxchick

Jul 07, 2009
9:25 PM EST
This is a sterling example of why I complain about crappy journalism and tech reporting-- it's an opinion piece, but it's in the News category. Just one long hearty swig of the Redmond kool-aid, without even an attempt at pretending basic news reporting standards.

Quoting: By putting the C# and CLI standards under the Community Promise, Microsoft has demonstrated a strong commitment to collaborating with the open source software community and empowering the developers of third-party .NET implementations. Much like Microsoft's recent contributions to the Apache Foundation, it's a sign that Redmond is coming to terms with open source and appreciates the advantages of truly open standards in some contexts. The Community Promise is also a major win for cross-platform programming and rapid application development on the Linux platform, as it will clear the way for more developers to adopt Mono.


That's not reporting, that's advocacy. For shame.
dinotrac

Jul 07, 2009
9:55 PM EST
Tux --

Haven't checked reporting on health care reform, economic stimulus, climate change or anything else lately, have you? Believe me ChickieT, by modern standards, this IS a news piece.
tuxchick

Jul 07, 2009
9:57 PM EST
You're right dino, I just have to pick my rants. Can't take 'em all on.
softwarejanitor

Jul 07, 2009
10:07 PM EST
@tuxchick I agree completely, that's a good example of what is wrong with a lot of "news" reporting these days... Completely biased editorial spin sold as objective.
gus3

Jul 07, 2009
10:30 PM EST
Repeat of an earlier comment on LXer:

Five years ago, I heard a complaint about "journalists"/"reporters" who would give standing ovations at "press conferences". Sadly, I was not surprised by this.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
12:01 AM EST
article: "The Community Promise is also a major win for cross-platform programming and rapid application development on the Linux platform, as it will clear the way for more developers to adopt Mono."

Let me offer my two cents.

First of all, let's not be so fast and celebrate the "major win" for cross-platform programming before we know all the facts.

Will the IDE tools for c# be free? Who will make/license the IDE that will compile everything that is covered and not covered by the Promise?

This Mono thing looks a bit like a bit like a Trojan horse.

Secondly. Let's not forget that there is Java. There are free Java IDE tools. Java can do everything for free c# does (and more -- the MS Promise does not include ASP/web part). Java has matured a lot and is a very good language. So I say, hook Java to Linux and Firefox by default and let the two similar technologies play it out on an even field.

There is, however, one thing I don't like about developing SW in Java and than distributing the bytecode to customers -- I have no control over the runtime environment. Let me tell you, you want to control the runtime -- you want to make sure your application runs the way you expect it to run. When the runtime is changed/updated, there are usually surprises -- I don't like that. c# will suffer the same fate. So what's the answer to this problem? There are a couple of ways out: distribute your bytecode together with the runtime or compile your bytecode into native code (I recommend Excelsior Jet for Java) and include the runtime (done automatically with Jet). The benefit of native code is that it can make the application faster and it protects your IP better. However, the size of the package can be relatively large -- that's very inconvenient when one wants to install lotsa free stuff.

Thirdly, let's not forget there is QT IDE from Nokia. If you let your SW go free, QT is free for your use. You can write your code once and compile it into native code for Mac, Linux and that one ...what's its name ... mmmmindows. I never used QT, so I can't tell you anything about its merits. It looks very promising though.

Personally, I don't feel like celebrating Mono and the Promise. What's new about it for cross-platform development except for MS taxes?

dinotrac

Jul 08, 2009
7:40 AM EST
WRT to IDE, I think you are talking about apples and oranges.

I can't imagine that Microsoft would extend protection to Visual Studio, which is it's proprietary IDE. By the same token, I can't see where things like sharpdevelop, monodevelop, or Eclipse would have an issues, beyond the fact that sharpdevelop and monodevelop are written in C#.
jdixon

Jul 08, 2009
8:27 AM EST
> Haven't checked reporting on health care reform, economic stimulus, climate change or anything else lately, have you?

Shh, Dino. You're not supposed to have noticed. :)
dinotrac

Jul 08, 2009
9:26 AM EST
jd -

Oops!! Sorry. Can we put that cat back in the bag?
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
9:40 AM EST
I find it absolutely hilarious that tuxchick, of all people, are complaining about this. She has published countless opinion pieces as "news" herself (many of which have been anti-mono opinion pieces).

Suddenly she has a problem with it when it doesn't push her agenda.

I'm sorry, tuxchick, but you are just being a hypocrite.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
10:22 AM EST


dinotrac: "WRT to IDE, I think you are talking about apples and oranges...I can't see where things like sharpdevelop, monodevelop, or Eclipse would have an issues"

Yes, sure there free tools for Mono. However, It looks like none of the tools you mentioned compare well with the full visual studio. Example: http://community.sharpdevelop.net/blogs/mattward/articles/Vi...

Besides, Monodevelop has very poor documentation.

I'm a little concerned that MS will port it's VS to Linux and put a non-zero price tag on it.
bigg

Jul 08, 2009
10:26 AM EST
@kt: Doesn't that just mean that free software developers have to get off their butts? If I found a Microsoft product that was sufficiently better to justify its price, I'd use it.
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
10:29 AM EST
kt: Seeing as how MonoDevelop is Free Software, if you are saddened by any lack of documentation, you can contribute some, right? :-)

As far as Microsoft porting VS to Linux - so what if they do? And if it costs money, again, why does that bother you?
hkwint

Jul 08, 2009
10:33 AM EST
Quoting:I'm a little concerned that MS will port it's VS to Linux and put a non-zero price tag on it.


That would be recognizing Linux and its value, and a lower hurdle to Linux adoption for some of the 3d party Win-devs.
dinotrac

Jul 08, 2009
10:35 AM EST
KS -

On second (oh sure, some would say first) thought, it occurs to me that one, in a wonderful world, be able to use Visual Studio on Windows to write Mono apps...

Wait!!

I know somebody who actually did that for a client!!!

I imagine that you've got to be really good to do that. From what I can tell, most .Net developers don't have sufficient awareness of their platform to knowingly write code that won't go beyond mono's boundaries.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
10:42 AM EST
KernalShepard: "And if it costs money, again, why does that bother you?"

MS taxes. I try to stay far away from anything MS. Why would I want to support MS with my $? I don't like the monopoly, its behavior and practices.

bigg: "If I found a Microsoft product that was sufficiently better to justify its price, I'd use it."

In this case (Mono), Java platform is sufficiently better and it's free. Why would you want to go MS?
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
10:45 AM EST
dino: I think that the Mono developers have made some sort of plugin for VS so that you can run/debug your program remotely on a Linux machine from inside VS. I remember reading something about that on Miguel's blog. Then they also have MoMA which can check an app and give you a list of potential problem areas.

You are probably right as far as most not being aware enough of their platform, though (at least until they get sufficient experience).
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
10:48 AM EST
kt: If Microsoft ports VS to Linux, you wouldn't be obligated to use nor buy it.

As far as Java vs C#, I personally find C# to be a lot better than Java. Of course, YMMV.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
10:55 AM EST
KernalShepard: "If Microsoft ports VS to Linux, you wouldn't be obligated to use nor buy it."

That remains to be seen.

KernalShepard: "As far as Java vs C#, I personally find C# to be a lot better than Java"

I was not talking about c# in general -- I specifically mentioned Mono.

On the other hand, why do you find c# better than Java?
Sander_Marechal

Jul 08, 2009
11:24 AM EST
Quoting:That remains to be seen.


What nonsense.
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
11:24 AM EST
kt:

"That remains to be seen."

Huh? I think you need to stop taking those paranoia pills.

As far as what I find better about C# than Java?

1. generics 2. pointers 3. pass-by-reference 4. properties are very nice syntactic sugar, especially with C# 3.0 5. aliases 6. lambda expressions 7. value types are also objects 8. delegates 9. indexers 10. preprocessor directives 11. LINQ 12. continuations 13. nullable types 14. partial types (really useful for autogenerating code) 15. multidimensional arrays 16. metadata annotations 17. unsigned types
jdixon

Jul 08, 2009
12:17 PM EST
KernelShepard:

> She has published countless opinion pieces as "news" herself (many of which have been anti-mono opinion pieces).

All of which have been clearly labeled as editorials.

kt:

> MS taxes. I try to stay far away from anything MS. Why would I want to support MS with my $?

I doubt you would. But some people might. If Microsoft wants to offer a product to those people, I have no problem with it.
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
12:21 PM EST
Quoting:Read more about: Story Type: Editorial; Groups: Microsoft, Novell


Seems to me this one was as well.
gus3

Jul 08, 2009
12:22 PM EST
Quoting:If Microsoft wants to offer a product to those people, I have no problem with it.
Nit: Microsoft isn't offering the product, merely granting an onerous license to use it.
tuxchick

Jul 08, 2009
12:34 PM EST
kernelshepherd, surely you understand that LXer is not ars Technica? That is where the source article is published, and that is where the story is labeled as news: arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2009/07/microsoft-issues -patent-promise-dispels-mono-concerns.ars

It is also labeled as news on the upper nav bar:

News Guides Reviews

When you click the highlighted News button, there it is again:

http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/

So ars Technica is quite positive that they think this is a news story. Too bad it isn't.
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
12:40 PM EST
Well, tuxchick, as I'm sure you followed the link from LXer, perhaps you should have noted that it said Editorial.

Failing that, Ars Technica has 3 categories: News, Reviews, and Guides. I do believe that the article fits best in the News category.
jdixon

Jul 08, 2009
12:42 PM EST
TC:

However, your blatant promotion of a single netbook distribution to the exclusion of others did not go unnoticed:

> Want to use both 'net and local apps? Easy peasey.

Such undeclared bias is very unprofessional of you. Next thing you know, you'll be claiming Mono is only than a mild viral infection and nothing to worry about. :)
gus3

Jul 08, 2009
12:46 PM EST
I'd rather have Mono than Visual Development. Mono can be cured, but many types of VD are incurable.
TxtEdMacs

Jul 08, 2009
12:59 PM EST
gus[n]

Quoting:Mono can be cured, but many types of VD are incurable.
And some folks thought I was insulting you when I cited Singularity. Wow a bot with a real sense of humor.

YBT
kt

Jul 08, 2009
3:14 PM EST
Sander: "What nonsense."

Really? How so?
gus3

Jul 08, 2009
3:24 PM EST
@kt:

Who is required to use anything, on any level, on a Linux system? Except for the module utilities and tightly-bound kernel stuff like udev, everything that's purely user-space can be replaced. And if you build everything you need directly into the kernel, even the kernel utilities are unnecessary.

That's why it's nonsense. It's ill-considered anti-Microsoft FUD, and it does nothing to contribute to a rational discussion of Mono vis-a-vis FOSS.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
3:35 PM EST
gus3: "Who is required to use anything, on any level, on a Linux system?"

I'm saying that MS can spill out an IDE that blows the others out of the water and charge for it. If you want to have a fully featured IDE, you would be required to pay. MS is in the business of licensing SW -- that's reality, not FUD.
kingttx

Jul 08, 2009
3:41 PM EST
This helps my personal reservations about Mono for the most part. They are dividing up Mono into two parts, if I understand it correctly, with one part all covered under the new Promise and the other part not covered.However, I'd like to know how many of the current default mono-based apps depend on the parts NOT covered by the Community Promise.

If that is zero and will remain at zero, then I can leave it to the developers that care more about the technology to duke it out over which development language is better. In that respect, as long as I have a choice, I could care less. Just be sure none of the technology that isn't covered doesn't creep back into the defaults, just leave it up to individuals to make an INFORMED decision whether they want such in their install.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
3:52 PM EST
jdixon:"I doubt you would. But some people might. If Microsoft wants to offer a product to those people, I have no problem with it."

If I get the Mono/MS drift right, they are trying to make Mono some kind of a standard. If there are no alternatives (Java) installed on Linux beside Mono, then my c# competition gains some advantage over me. That way I might consider c# and probably feed MS.
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
4:26 PM EST
kt: but the point remains that just because Microsoft starts selling VS for Linux, you are not forced to use it. If it's the best IDE and you *want* to use it, then that is your choice. But you still have that choice. Eclipse, MonoDevelop, KDevelop, etc (for example) would still be available options.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
4:40 PM EST
KernelShepard: "If it's the best IDE and you *want* to use it, then that is your choice."

If that's the only fully-featured IDE and I have to use it to keep up with my competition than it's hard to call it "choice".
gus3

Jul 08, 2009
4:50 PM EST
@kt:

KernalShepard said:

Quoting:If Microsoft ports VS to Linux, you wouldn't be obligated to use nor buy it.
Then you said:

Quoting:That remains to be seen.
That's what was nonsense. And it's still nonsense, no matter how good a Linux port of VS could be. Nobody will obtain a court order against you to buy a VS4Lin license, nobody will kidnap you and take you to an ATM to force a wire transfer to Microsoft, nobody will take you to court for malfeasance because you didn't use VS4Lin.

There is no obligation there, no matter how much FUD you spout to create that impression.
softwarejanitor

Jul 08, 2009
4:50 PM EST
Its all academic... there isn't a snowball's chance in Hades that MS will ever (O.K., at least not anytime soon) release any of their major products like Visual Studio for a FOSS platform. Hell, they barely support MacOS X and its a proprietary platform with (arguably) significant and easily measurable market share.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
4:57 PM EST
"you wouldn't be obligated to use nor buy it."

If they charge for it, you are obligated to pay for it when you want to use it. That's my point. I hope it gets through to you, gus3.
Sander_Marechal

Jul 08, 2009
5:09 PM EST
Quoting:If that's the only fully-featured IDE and I have to use it to keep up with my competition than it's hard to call it "choice".


Hahaha. So you're just worried that Microsoft is going to make a product that's *better* than the FOSS offerings and sell it to Linux people. You know what that's called? Competition. The solution? Build a better product.

Oh and by the way, IDEs suck. I use Vim and I can out-develop many IDE wielding programmers. Great applications are written by great developers, not by IDEs. An IDE is just a tool and often a pretty bad tool at that. Especially in a Linux environment.

I would welcome Microsoft to port VS to Mono/Linux and sell it.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
5:22 PM EST
Sander: "Hahaha. So you're just worried that Microsoft is going to make a product that's *better* than the FOSS offerings and sell it to Linux people. You know what that's called? Competition. The solution? Build a better product."

Are sure there can be a fully-featured FOSS c# IDE? What about the .NET parts not covered by the Promise?

Sander: "Oh and by the way, IDEs suck."

IDEs are good tools to facilitate development of large scale applications. I'm very surprised to hear such statement from someone who's involved in SW development.

Sander: "Especially in a Linux environment."

Try NetBeans -- you will like it.
gus3

Jul 08, 2009
5:38 PM EST
Quoting:you are obligated to pay for it when you want to use it.
That's exactly what KernelShepard said, but you took exception to it.

Decide what it is you want to say, OK?
kt

Jul 08, 2009
5:44 PM EST
Gus3: "That's exactly what KernelShepard said, but you took exception to it.

Decide what it is you want to say, OK?"

I do not understand what this means. I decided what I want to say and I said it. What else do you want?
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
5:49 PM EST
kt: VS on Linux isn't going to make Netbeans any less viable. I've also heard people compare Eclipse quite favorably to VS.

MonoDevelop is coming along nicely at a rapid pace. When I find the need to use an IDE, it is quite good in my opinion. I am with Sander as far as development on Linux. When programming in C or C++, Emacs or Vim are what I typically use (I'm in the process of moving from Emacs to Vim).

Quoting:Are sure there can be a fully-featured FOSS c# IDE? What about the .NET parts not covered by the Promise?


What parts not covered by the Promise are required to implement a fully-featured IDE (FOSS or otherwise)?
gus3

Jul 08, 2009
5:49 PM EST
First you said Microsoft might force people to buy VS4Lin licenses, then you said Microsoft couldn't force someone to buy it if they didn't want to use it. So which is it?
kt

Jul 08, 2009
5:57 PM EST
"What parts not covered by the Promise are required to implement a fully-featured IDE (FOSS or otherwise)?"

Let's ask MS what parts they will or will not be protecting in the future.

gus3: "First you said Microsoft might force people to buy VS4Lin licenses, then you said Microsoft couldn't force someone to buy it if they didn't want to use it. So which is it?"

That's my exit call. This makes no sense. I said no such things.

Edit: I said that MS might charge for license and one will be obligated to pay for it when one wants/has to use this IDE. This is very simple. Goodbye .
KernelShepard

Jul 08, 2009
6:45 PM EST
kt: everything you need to implement a fully-functional IDE is in ECMA. All of the libraries that Microsoft have released outside of ECMA are built on top of the ECMA portions. Thus, it doesn't matter what new parts they implement, you can implement an alternative.

As an example, just because Windows.Forms is not covered by ECMA didn't stop Mono from developing Gtk# as alternative GUI library.
jdixon

Jul 08, 2009
6:56 PM EST
> I said that MS might charge for license and one will be obligated to pay for it when one wants/has to use this IDE.

Which is so obvious all anyone can say is, "Duh!".

Now, for the step you're missing. Why would this be a bad thing? What exactly is wrong with people paying for something they want?

If you don't want to use Microsoft products, the current free ones will still be available. Are you really worried that Microsoft products are that much better? And it's not like Visual Studio isn't cost competitive, as the Visual Studio Express Editions are free downloads.
softwarejanitor

Jul 08, 2009
7:29 PM EST
@kt I've been involved with many large software projects over the years and I have to agree with Sander. I don't like IDEs. Or at least I don't like any of them I've ever seen. I've tried most of the popular ones and some of them had some cool or interesting features but in the end they all had something about them that I didn't like. I don't like the way the pieces are welded together into a big monolithic blob, and even if they allow some components to be replaced that rarely ever works well. IDEs also as a rule are huge, bloated and suck up all resources they can get their hands on. I'd rather pick the editor I like, the compiler/interpreter I like, the build system I like, the version control system I like, the interface builder I like and the debugger I like and integrate them together as I see fit.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
8:47 PM EST
It looks like the is some unfinished business here.

KS:"Thus, it doesn't matter what new parts they implement, you can implement an alternative."

If MS implements new protected parts, they will have advantage of providing early IDE implementation for these parts. The non-MS IDE users will have to wait until there are alternatives available. I would want my changes as soon as anyone has them. So who do I invest in? Right -- MS IDE.

JD: "Now, for the step you're missing. Why would this be a bad thing? What exactly is wrong with people paying for something they want?"

Please see my earlier posts about why I don't want to pay MS.

SJ, if the IDEs were not needed, they would not be made.

Thanks for making sense.
softwarejanitor

Jul 08, 2009
8:52 PM EST
@kt IDEs may be needed by some people, or at least some people may find them to be useful, but that doesn't mean that they are the right answer for everyone. That's the big problem with IDEs -- they all try to be everything to everyone, at least for a certain niche (and in some cases the niche they are shooting for is pretty big). Things that try to do that tend to not be the best at anything, or at least not the best at everything. People that recognize that may prefer to pick the best separate tools for their own needs and/or preferences.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
8:59 PM EST
"but that doesn't mean that they are the right answer for everyone"

I agree. IDEs are not the only answer to development. That does not change my point -- IDEs are needed.
jdixon

Jul 08, 2009
9:38 PM EST
> Please see my earlier posts about why I don't want to pay MS.

But that's the entire point. "You" don't have to. Only those who want the product have to. Which brings us back to the question of "Are you really worried that Microsoft's product will be that much better than the alternatives?", again.

> That does not change my point -- IDEs are needed.

I think the real point is that IDE's allow those who could not otherwise code their way out of a wet paper back to produce usable code for those who couldn't tell (or, in many cases, care) if the code was any good to save their lives. So, yes, they are needed.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
9:54 PM EST
JD, pleas see the quotes from my previous posts. It might help you get my point:

kt: "If there are no alternatives (Java) installed on Linux beside Mono, then my c# competition gains some advantage over me. That way I might consider c# and probably feed MS."

kt: "If that's the only fully-featured IDE and I have to use it to keep up with my competition than it's hard to call it "choice"."

I actually have a life and I don't think I will be able respond further.
jdixon

Jul 08, 2009
10:27 PM EST
OK, I'd think those points were covered by my question, but...

> "If there are no alternatives (Java) installed on Linux beside Mono, then my c# competition gains some advantage over me. That way I might consider c# and probably feed MS."

There's no reason you have to use C# just because your competitors do. Not doing so might well be your competitive advantage. And unless your version of Linux is MSLinux, there will be alternatives installed or readily available, so I don't forsee that as a problem.

>: "If that's the only fully-featured IDE and I have to use it to keep up with my competition than it's hard to call it "choice"."

Whether the current IDEs available for Linux are "full featured" or not is already a fairly hotly debated subject, and AFAICT it's entirely a subjective issue. I think that will remain true in the future, with or without Visual Studio for Linux.

> I actually have a life and I don't think I will be able respond further.

That's fine, I need to get some sleep too.
kt

Jul 08, 2009
10:29 PM EST
jd: "There's no reason you have to use C# just because your competitors do."

We are talking about cross-platform development.
Sander_Marechal

Jul 09, 2009
2:08 AM EST
Python, Java, C/C++, Lisp, Erlang are all viable alternatives to C# for cross-platform development. It has always been possible to ship the dependencies with the application. You are not tied to what is installed on the system. You are not tied to C# and even if you did use that, then you are not tied to VS or any other IDE.

Your argument seems to boil down to: "Microsoft might make VS on Linux such an awesome IDE that I really want to use it. But then I'd have to pay for it! No fair!"
jdixon

Jul 09, 2009
5:40 AM EST
> Your argument seems to boil down to:...

Well, at least I'm not the only one reaching that conclusion.

I've had a fair nights sleep now, and that's still what I come up with when I re-read your posts above.

Maybe I'm missing something.

So, if Microsoft makes Visual Studio into such a good cross-platform development system that you simply can't be competitive unless you use it, why shouldn't they get paid for it?

Of course, history indicates that the probability of this happening is about the same as my finding a winning Powerball ticket on the sidewalk.
gus3

Jul 09, 2009
7:48 AM EST
Quoting:the probability of this happening is about the same as my finding a winning Powerball ticket on the sidewalk.
Um, uh.... *shuffles feet*

It wasn't a Powerball ticket, but I did find a scratch-off worth US$50 stuffed into a hedgerow once.

Sorry if that wrecks your probability estimates.
kt

Jul 09, 2009
8:30 AM EST
Sander: "It has always been possible to ship the dependencies with the application. You are not tied to what is installed on the system. You are not tied to C# and even if you did use that, then you are not tied to VS or any other IDE."

Sure you can ask the user install a runtime, but that can be problematic if they have a runtime that they don't want to change. Having your app run from/in the runtime you attach to your app can also be problematic -- space constrains.

If there are no alternatives (Java) installed on Linux beside Mono, then my c# competition gains some advantage over me. If MS implements new protected parts, they will have advantage of providing early IDE implementation for these parts. The non-MS IDE users will have to wait until there are alternatives available. If would want my changes as soon as anyone has them. So who do I invest in? Right -- MS IDE.

Why do I think there are just two alternatives for me (Mono or Java)? They use a similar cross-platform model with GUI and web browser capabilities.

JD: "Maybe I'm missing something."

Yes.

Sander_Marechal

Jul 09, 2009
9:14 AM EST
Quoting:Why do I think there are just two alternatives for me (Mono or Java)? They use a similar cross-platform model with GUI and web browser capabilities.


Then your vision is clearly limited. I have pointed out several alternatives.

As for space constraints, they are pretty much negligible these days. Hard drive space is dirt and dirt cheap. Runtime environments are small. OpenOffice.org fits in at ~200 MB fully installed (massive for a FOSS application but nimble in comparison to most commercial software) and ships both Python and Java runtimes.
jdixon

Jul 09, 2009
9:46 AM EST
> Sorry if that wrecks your probability estimates.

Not really. It could happen.

> Sure you can ask the user install a runtime, but that can be problematic...

Uhm, .Net requires a runtime.

> Yes.

With meaning to be rude, if none of us are seeing it, it seems likely that you're failing to communicate it. :(

Since I've had that problem on occasion myself, I know it can happen.

This seems to be the important paragraph:

If there are no alternatives (Java) installed on Linux beside Mono, then my c# competition gains some advantage over me. If MS implements new protected parts, they will have advantage of providing early IDE implementation for these parts. The non-MS IDE users will have to wait until there are alternatives available. If would want my changes as soon as anyone has them. So who do I invest in? Right -- MS IDE.

First, as I noted above, unless you happen to be using MSLinux (if Microsoft actually does go crossplatform, I fully expect there to be a sanctioned version of Linux), then there will be alternatives available. Many of those alternatives have already been noted.

Second, yes Microsoft controls their language and IDE, and can implement changes which the competition has to react to. Again, this is a "Duh!" point. It's more of a reason not to use their products than a reason to use them.
kt

Jul 09, 2009
11:42 AM EST
Sander: "Python, Java, C/C++, Lisp, Erlang are all viable alternatives to C# for cross-platform development."

I think that Python, Lisp, Erlang are not comparing well to Java.

Here is where they say Python is slow: http://www.python.org/doc/essays/comparisons/ Here is where they say Python is not good for GUI: http://wiki.python.org/moin/GuiProgramming

Porting C/C++ is a pain.

The main point is that the platform that is installed by default and has the best features is the platform that I want to target. For me it is Mono, if Linux distros provide it as a default without Java on the side. Very simple.



dinotrac

Jul 09, 2009
11:59 AM EST
No love for Ruby?

Geeeeeeeeeeee.

Ruby has had some, umm, issues, to be sure., but 1.9.1 provides a serious performance kick, and Rails-heads can get a good part of that with specially patched versions of 1.8.7.

As development goes, Ruby is a very sweet place to work. It's somewhere in-between and beyond perl and python. Like perl, it provides the developer a great deal of freedom. Like python, ruby is relentlessly object-oriented. Much nicer than perl's bless-this-mess approach.

Besides, rubies are prettier than pe(a)rls and they don't squeeze the stuffing out you.
jdixon

Jul 09, 2009
12:15 PM EST
> The main point is that the platform that is installed by default and has the best features is the platform that I want to target.

For Linux, that's either vi or emacs with GCC. :) But I'll agree that's not as easily made cross-platform.

> For me it is Mono, if Linux distros provide it as a default without Java on the side.

I think you're underrating Python, myself, but that's entirely my subjective opinion. However, I don't know of any major distro which doesn't provide a Java runtime. Most also provide a Python runtime.

Your criteria seem to be largely subjective, but now that you've expressed them more clearly, I agree that you're probably better off with either Mono, Java, or possibly Python.
jdixon

Jul 09, 2009
12:18 PM EST
> No love for Ruby?

I was just researching that for my last comment, and it looks like Windows is somewhat of a second class Ruby platform. I agree that it could be added to the list, but I doubt kt would consider it suitable.
kt

Jul 09, 2009
1:42 PM EST
"I don't know of any major distro which doesn't provide a Java runtime."

Ubuntu, Debian -- Java not there by default. There are others.

jdixon

Jul 09, 2009
1:57 PM EST
> Ubuntu, Debian -- Java not there by default.

I didn't say doesn't provide by default. I said doesn't provide.

"The Etch release was the first one to provide Sun's JDK environment without the need to download it from third-party repositories (see Java 5 and 6, Section 6.3.1)."

"To get Sun Java under Ubuntu 7.04 or later running on Intel or PowerPC platform, you should enable the Universe repository in Add/Remove programs, and install either the openjdk-6-jre package or the sun-java6-bin package."
kt

Jul 09, 2009
1:59 PM EST
"I didn't say doesn't provide by default. I said doesn't provide."

I know.
gus3

Jul 09, 2009
3:42 PM EST
Slackware includes a Java runtime by default.
Sander_Marechal

Jul 09, 2009
4:39 PM EST
Quoting:I think that Python, Lisp, Erlang are not comparing well to Java.


It depends on who you ask. Funny that the guy saying Python GUI programming sucks is a Ruby fanboy. I can point to boatloads of programmers all recommending a different stack. I can get even bigger boatloads of programmers criticizing a different stack.

I have worked with many stacks. Python + Glade + PyGTK is fantastic. Python + Clutter is great too. Python + Qt.ui is apparently great as well (haven't tried yet). C + Glade + GTK is also good if you need raw speed and can develop decently in C (I developed gnome-hearts that way). In my experience, GUI programming in Java sucks. Big time. I wonder if it has improved now that it has Qt bindings.

Don't believe the people claiming Python is slow. It's pretty fast. In a complex app 95% is running in plain C anyway. Python has bindings to an ungodly amount of C and C++ libraries. Python is just the bit of glue in between. Yes, implementing number crunching algorithm Foo in pure Python runs slower than you'd expect, but a Python programmer doesn't do that. They "import Foo" and use the Python bindings to the fast C library.

You need to open your eyes and look. Your world seems to consist of a choice between Java and Mono. Well, in my opinion they're both suboptimal choices for GUI development. There are much nicer stacks out there. Did you know that there are Lisp bindings for GTK and Qt? Lisp is a brilliant language if you can wrap your head around it. I know Lisp programmers that can write a 100 line Lisp program that runs circles around the equivalent developed in e.g. Java or C# that need a thousand lines or more. Same goes for Erlang. Need a resource intensive GUI app that makes the most of a 16-core monster machine? Use Erlang.

There's more out there than Java or Mono.
jdixon

Jul 09, 2009
6:40 PM EST
> I know.

Then why the objection? It's not like firing up your package manager, changing repositories, and selecting the desired program is harder than purchasing and installing a commercial app.
kt

Jul 09, 2009
9:43 PM EST
jd:"It's not like firing up your package manager, changing repositories, and selecting the desired program is harder than purchasing and installing a commercial app."

I prefer not to bother users with installing dependencies. Going to a website and just running whatever is there (java applet, activex) without installing any dependencies is easy for users and beneficial to the developer. User-friendly apps are a good concept.

Are Python, Erlang, Lisp so good as far as a browser support goes?
kt

Jul 09, 2009
9:49 PM EST
kt: "The main point is that the platform that is installed by default and has the best features is the platform that I want to target. For me it is Mono, if Linux distros provide it as a default without Java on the side."

I also want support/backing of a serious entity like Sun (soon Oracle) to keep updating the platform. Your alternatives are not backed well.
gus3

Jul 09, 2009
10:31 PM EST
Oh, so now we're throwing in embedded browser support? As in, the browser is the platform? Every time someone answers you, kt, you move the target.

And saying that Lisp isn't well-backed is the mark of a troll. It was the first language to present its own interpreter in less than 1 page of code, AND it could do this in the 1960's, AND it didn't require an entire room of hardware. It's one of the oldest languages still in active use. In fact, right now I'm using a window manager written in a homebrew dialect of Lisp with GTK+2 bindings.

Your constant bickering and dodging tells me you're either on Microsoft's payroll, or still in your parents' basement. My bets are on the former, based on your spelling skills and lack of 1337-5p34k.
azerthoth

Jul 09, 2009
11:57 PM EST
kt gus may have a point, you mention activex as if its a good thing.
tracyanne

Jul 10, 2009
2:10 AM EST
Quoting:you mention activex as if its a good thing


And it only runs on IE, which is hardly useful.
Sander_Marechal

Jul 10, 2009
2:21 AM EST
Quoting:Your constant bickering and dodging tells me you're either on Microsoft's payroll, or still in your parents' basement.


I disagree. More like a corporate 9-to-5 developer. But let's not go ad homonym here.

As for ActiveX, the sooner it dies, the better for everyone. Even Microsoft agrees.
tracyanne

Jul 10, 2009
4:24 AM EST
I remember when ActiveX was first released, it was a horribly insecure technology, and was recognised as such at the time, and nothing about it has changed in all that time.
bigg

Jul 10, 2009
5:50 AM EST
@kt: On your link about 'they' say Python is slow. In addition to the existence of Cython, f2py, and the comments made by Sander above, it is perhaps helpful to quote the first sentence, that starts with "Disclaimer" in bold:

"Disclaimer: This essay was written sometime in 1997. It shows its age. It is retained here merely as a historical artifact. --Guido van Rossum".
jdixon

Jul 10, 2009
7:18 AM EST
> I prefer not to bother users with installing dependencies.

And yet not every distro installs Mono by default, so some will have to.

> I also want support/backing of a serious entity like Sun (soon Oracle) to keep updating the platform. Your alternatives are not backed well.

OK, so now corporate backing is required, huh? Why didn't you say so in the beginning, since that eliminates something like 80% of languages from consideration. And it means I could have ignored the entire conversation. Silly me, here I thought being productive was what was important.

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