09.17.09

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gNewSense Gets Rid of Mono While Mono Gets Closer to Microsoft

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Ubuntu at 2:32 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Trash sign with Mono

Summary: Another GNU/Linux distribution throws Mono out; Microsoft’s foundation may adopt more from Novell

THIS omission was probably expected and now it is confirmed. [emphasis is ours]

gNewsense’s strongest point is that when you install it you are running completely free software. It was very nice to see that Mono and subsequently f-spot, tomboy et al are absent from this distro.

They would actually have to manually remove it from Ubuntu.

It makes a lot of sense, especially now that Mono’s creator works for a commercial entity of Microsoft. To whit:

Miguel snuggles closer to Microsoft

[...]

De Icaza himself has no qualms about pointing out that he was kicked off the board of the FSF for “refusing to be an active part” in what he says was a campaign to rename Linux as GNU/Linux. This sits somewhat at variance with the glowing descrption of him as an open source advocate but never mind.

[...]

The CodePlex Foundation is a commercial entity. The board, set up under the non-profit rules of Washington State, has complete control over the foundation and is also self-perpetuating, according to a detailed analysis by Andy Updegrove.

We wrote about the CodePlex Foundation in:

Some people whom we spoke to hypothesise that Sam Ramji's departure may be followed by de Icaza’s appointment. Linux.com has this rather weird list of improper candidates for the most part (Microsoft-hostile folks)

Who Will Fill Sam Ramji’s Role as Microsoft’s Open Source Leader?

[...]

Obviously, Microsoft likely is already working on internal lists of desired candidates to take Ramji’s position, but at least one name has already popped up online inside the open source community.

Watch this list. Novell’s Zonker is in there too.

“There is a substantive effort in open source to bring such an implementation of .Net to market, known as Mono and being driven by Novell, and one of the attributes of the agreement we made with Novell is that the intellectual property associated with that is available to Novell customers.”

Bob Muglia, Microsoft President

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A Single Comment

  1. Will said,

    September 17, 2009 at 4:50 am

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    Good thing we have KDE as well as Gnome. I think I remember reading somewhere that Shuttleworth left open the possibility of rebasing Ubuntu’s primary DE on KDE: http://lwn.net/Articles/284760/

    From the article:

    “Q: On a related issue, do you worry that GNOME is becoming too involved and enmeshed with Microsoft technologies? If the patent problem with GNOME becomes too great, might you switch to KDE one day?

    A: I think it’s very healthy that we have multiple desktop platforms, and that they’re both committed to free software and sources of innovation and inspiration and competition. We picked GNOME mostly because of its approach to the release cycle and because it had a real strong commitment back in 2004 to usability.

    Since then, KDE has also embraced the idea of usability as a primary driver, and they’ve done some really interesting things on the technology front. I keep a level of awareness of KDE, and I run KDE at home just to make sure I have a sense of where it’s going and how it is doing. I like the rivalry. We might [switch]; it’s good to have that option.

    With regard to GNOME and Microsoft, I’m not concerned. My view is that to win, you have to have your own vision. You have to have a very clear idea of what you can deliver that’s unique. You can’t go around sort of chasing someone else’s coat tails. So while I respect the people in the free software community who invest a lot of time in making compatible implementations of other people’s technology, I don’t think that’s the real recipe for success for free software. We have to give people a reason to use our platform for itself, not because it’s a cheap version of someone else’s.

    And in fact, the real successes of free software have been the places where it has just blown away the alternatives. The Internet runs on free software, and not because it has copied anything from Microsoft. The proprietary software guys like to accuse free software of not innovating and not doing anything other than sort of walking down the same path that they’ve already walked, which is always easier. That’s just not true, but guys like the Mono Project are reinforcing that stereotype.”

    Now, I don’t see Ubuntu switching over to KDE as primary DE anytime soon, but there’s the possibility that if Gnome falls too far behind KDE, it might fall from Ubuntu’s favor. Not to mention what the consequences of too much mono infestation might eventually do to Gnome’s standing in Fedora/Red Hat/CentOS. And the history being what it is, getting tied too closely to Redmond has a good chance of leading to falling behind technologically.

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