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10.22.09

Banshee is Novell, Mono, and ‘Forbidden’ Microsoft Software Patents

Posted in GNOME, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Patents at 4:46 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Banshee

Summary: Refutation of Mono disinformation about Banshee being a GNOME project without associated issues

Banshee is a Mono project that we wrote about before, e.g. in:

Banshee is rather unique because it’s a de facto Novell-only project for Novell customers (and a potential Trojan horse for the rest because of parts of Mono/.NET which it uses).

The Mono-Nono Web site highlights more spin from Mono proponents — spin that’s akin to attempts to associate Novell's Evolution (increasingly a Mono insertion vector) with GNOME.

Interesting bit of spin out of Team Mono today.

It’s not what you think, baby.

In a numbers-heavy blog post, Bertrand Loretz tries to make the argument that “Banshee is a GNOME Project” and not a ”Novell project”. While I understand why one might want to distance themselves from Novell, you’re going to have a rough time trying that with Banshee.

For starters Novell owns the Banshee name, logo and icon. One might think that pretty much seals the deal?

Another point of interest is that “one of the purposes building Banshee was to showcase building an application on Mono.”

There’s also this bit right there on the Banshee “About” Page:

Novell employs Aaron and Gabriel Burt to work on Banshee.

So, just going by Mr. Loretz’s own numbers, at least 70.4% of the code contributions came from the 2 developers Novell is paying to work on Banshee.

So, Novell owns the project name and likeness, and pays for the overwhelming majority of the actual code, but it’s not

Mono has come under some more criticism recently [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6] (due to Jeremy Allison’s column), leading to comments such as this one: “The really big difference between Samba and Mono is that Samba is necessary and Mono isn’t. I’ll go further, Mono serves no function at all that can’t be better served by other solutions. There isn’t a single important application that requires Mono so why take any risk at all by including it in any distro except Novel’s. It’s one thing to incur risk, even significant risk, to achieve some significant aim. But it makes no sense to incur even the tiniest risk if the potential gain from it is essentially 0.

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