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Ximian

Miguel de Icaza & Nat Friedman On Mono 142

cg writes "LinuxWorld has an article based on quotes from Miguel de Icaza and Nat Friedman about Ximian's motives, plans and ambitions for Mono. If you read yesterday's story about "Bad Ximian", you should also read Miguel's opinion on Passport."
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Miguel de Icaza & Nat Friedman On Mono

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    You guys like to bash GNOME and Ximian don't you?
    If Ximian makes software and release them under the GPL and LGPL, they are evil.
    If Ximian makes a .NET compatible implementation but doesn't require you to pay money, they are evil.
    But if KDE implements ActiveX in Konqueror, it's allright.
    If TheKompany makes commercial, closed source software, it's allright.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    "If Microsoft's vision of the world is correct, or even remotely correct," Friedman said, "and there will be lots of Web services [...] then one of the benefits of the Mono project is that Linux machines will be able to run them and be able to interoperate with them."

    But you don't need Mono to run Web Services on Linux. All you need is SOAP, WSDL and UDDI. And all those are already available on Linux as well.

    a lot of people are going to be learning to use the .NET framework, and learning to develop software from it [...] upgrade the development platform of an open source system make it something that these developers can more easily transition to.

    Most of the people learning .NET are Windows developers. A huge number of them will be VB developers. This people already know and use ADO, ASP and COM. They will learn to use ADO.net, ASP.net, WebForms, Web Services, with VB.NET and C#.

    Only Web Services and C# will be available on Mono. This does nothing to help people's transition. I'd be lost programming GUI apps with Gnome if all I'd ever done before was program GUI apps in Win32 API. Since the libraries on different platforms won't be same (and looks like there's no effort in standardizing libraries like ADO or WebForms) then I'd be equally lost moving from .NET to Mono.

    Programming languages aren't the key. The libraries are.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    If MS positions .NET as a Java killer, then can't Java, XML and other open source applications be written to counter-strike it?

    Yes, and they already do exit. In fact, .NET looks more or less a counter strike to J2EE platform, which has implementations from more than 20 different vendors, and has basically taken over the application server market.

    Microsoft has brought something new to the game, namely the Web Services. Whether or not they prove useful, only time will tell, but all the major J2EE platforms have already adopted them, and they can be used today. Unlike the beta versions of .NET which won't even allow you to deploy...

  • by Anonymous Coward
    For all practical purposes, compiling C to Java Byte Code is impossible. Various partial solutions have been written, but a full implementation seems to be too complex to pull off.


    For all practical purposes, compiling C++ to .NET Byte Code is impossible. Various partial solutions have been written (Managed C++), but a full implementation seems to be too complex to pull off
  • Mono is still a useful project and allows developers to move C# projects off the MS Windows platform onto other OS's

    No they won't, since projects on MS .NET will rely on Microsoft libraries, and won't exist on Mono. Ximian cannot emulate them any better than the Wine guys could, and Microsoft is free to change the API at any time.

    Mono will not help people to move from Win32 platform to Linux.

    You have a class you like in C++, and you want to wrap it in some other language, say CLOS, then if the CLR supports CLOS, you can use it there.

    That won't work. C++ is not a supported language. The only resembling language is something they call "Managed C". Remember, C# exists so there wouldn't be a need for C++ on Win32 platform anymore.

    We can make use of the code built in C# and port it to other platforms.

    No, you can't. You don't have all the libraries, only a small core (most C# code will come from the Win32 platform). Do not ignore this crucial fact. Language matters nothing. The libraries do.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 30, 2001 @04:15AM (#2183912)
    two things one this.

    firstly, supporting .NET and passport on a linux platform is just helping microsoft stabilise the dekstop arena and so i find this strange coming from ximian. ximian's has been doing great things for the linux desktop helping it become a useable interface for people like my parents. this is where linux has always had its shortcomings. as a server, we all know it rocks! now basically if linux servers talk .NET and maintain the persistance of a passport - microsoft has its back-end technology all over the place and can use its far-reaching availability as an excuse to promote XP as the desktop operating system of choice. why? because when you first fire up an XP-based system, you go an register for a passport. once again, from my parent's perspective this is a simple and convenient action. considering that both my parents sit on some board of directors or another, their familiarity with microsoft as a desktop platform creeps into decision making for server platforms as well (yes i know they are not the IT directors, but it IS still a FACTOR).

    secondly. i find it so amusing what microsoft is doing. about 3 years a go i read an article on microsoft's web site, which i WISH i had saved. it was basically slating the JAVA and J2EE environment and how SUN was targeting networking computing was such a step back in technology. back to the old terminal days of old. now what do they do, they bring out their own distributed platform in the shape of .NET. J2EE has been around for a number of years now. it has a large amount of commercial support. it has had time to mature into an incredibly robust and scalable platform. and now everybody sees the alternative, .NET and jumps onto the microsoft bandwagon.

    in JAVA, and J2EE, sun has produced a great "plumbing" mechanism for distributed software. the problem is that they haven't developed the frills around the plumbing (somethign like .NET). i believe they expected the community to use their platform to do such a thing. have we failed them?

  • You can still use whatever software you want. For example, you can continue to not use .NET if that makes you happy. The difference is that those of us that are interested in supporting .NET clients (or acting as .NET clients) will now be able to do so.

    That's what choice is all about. Making options available and letting people decide.

  • As I recall at one time in 1996-1997 the way Sun was promoting Java was to be used for everything, including client apps like word processors and spreadsheets.

    Their idea was you were going to deploy very dumb terminals which had a Java OS, i.e. a JVM and nothing much else. The fact that they only cost about $100 less than a PC was ignored by their Central Planning Agency.

    Then you would connect to your server and download the code you needed to run.

    This was called the Network computer or some such name.

    It relied on two things:
    - Large network pipes
    - Java client code running faster

    About this same time Corel announced they were going to port Wordperfect to Java to take advantage of this great idea. They spent about a year, and the result was something with the functionality of notepad.exe that made your Pentium 133 seem like it was a 386.

    They subsequently dropped the idea.

    The interesting thing about the network computer idea is that you could see where it was going. This was in a day and age where we had already realized that sharing application binaries on the file server was not a good idea. So you knew they were going to have to add a harddrive to cache code on the client to make it faster, then they'd probably start doing other things with it. Eventually you'd just end up with a regular microcomputer, so what was the point of going down that direction?

    It eventually died, thankfully.
  • "sitting around the fire like a gang of old Amiga enthusiasts dreaming about the comeback of Amiga and its rise to prominence is not the way to do it."

    That has got to be the most insightful comment I've ever seen on slashdot. :)

  • >> Secondly, it means we are forced into Microsoft's vision of the future

    > No it doesn't. It means we have another choice.

    But you already had a choice. What has been quietly going on for a while are network services based on java. It would seem that just because it isn't been trumpeted by MS PR flacks it doesn't exist.

    And yes, I know the arguments about java being owned by Sun and all the rest. But all of the APIs for the class libraries are published as is the specification for the JVM. Are you willing to accept that MS will do the same for .NET?
  • "java may be a good languaje, but it seems that everybody forget it is a *propietary* languaje..."

    But all the specifications are published. This is why you can get implementations from Sun, IBM and a variety of other sources. Can you assume that MS will do the same?

    "it is *owned* by Sun, the same company that doesn't want this languaje/platform in the hands of ECMA or ISO."

    The C# language may be been submitted to ECMA, however none of the supporting libraries have. What use is a bare language?

  • What you discribe is called PKI. (Public Key Infrastructure) It would work nicely too. Netscape already supports two way authentication with SSL and certificates. Basically you the user would buy a Verisign type certificate, and load it into you browser. A web server could request the public part of your certificate and use that to authenticate you to the server. Now it would be nice to add roaming capabilites so that you can use a friends web browser but that would be pretty trivial.

  • PKI does peer to peer trust relationships of independent registrars. The independent registrars don't even need to use the same software. PKI will work as well if not better then DNS.

  • by Tack ( 4642 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @04:15AM (#2183920) Homepage
    A lot of people seem to be worried that Mono will ultimately be Ximian's undoing. Even if this is true and Ximian folds up, what have we lost?

    We lose a company that presents a corporate face to GNOME. We have not lost the developers. The Ximian hackers are so pationate about what they do (if the recent Mono articles haven't made that clear nothing will) that I think they would still hack on GNOME if they had nothing but a cardboard box on Central Ave. and a laptop.

    Others have mentioned that Ximian is losing focus on its current projects like Gnumeric, their desktop distrution, and Evolution. In fact, people have shouted this with extreme prejudice. Well let's get one thing clear: Ximian owes us nothing! Ximian can direct their efforts to whatever project they damn well wish. They are OSS developers in their core, and OSS developers scratch their own itches. That's the way it works, folks.

    .NET is an interesting idea, and Mono is an interesting project. Ximian is surely treading in unknown territory but the payoffs could be big in 3-5 years. It's worth a gamble. Ximian isn't dropping their current projects, but if you're worried Evolution or Gnumeric or whatever isn't going to be ready for your desktop as soon as you'd like, then sign up the mailing lists and look at contributing.

    This is our community. Take action.

    Jason.

  • So, let's assume emulating .NET is a worthy goal So why is Microsoft helping Ximian? Is it because they need Ximian's help in making .NET a standard? Microsoft has shown itself quite capable of making unilateral standards that are quite popular all by itself. Is it because Microsoft has suddenly become different than it has been in the past and suddenly wants to play nice? They no longer consider Linux and the GPL as cancers? Or because they want to make Ximian go on a wild goose chase that will in the end prove fruitless? You don't have to even have assume that Microsoft is the Mordor of the computing industry to see that it is not in their best interest to help Ximian in any meaningful way. It is easy to see how distracting Ximian from its work on GNOME *is* in Microsoft's best interest, however.
  • Sure, right now Mono is only the .NET side of things - it doesn't deal with Passport. But you can bet that other folks are already working on it

    Here's a passport equivalent under development: dotgnu [dotgnu.org].

  • arrgh

    people if you link to a libary and use fork()
    that lib also has spoon() knife() etc.

    but you just use fork()

    now you want to link aganst another lib it also has fork() but NO knife() spoon() you dont need them just a fork you can

    so what has this got to do with monopolies ??

    wake up do you get what I am talking about ?

    regards

    john jones
  • and this got to do with mono how ?

    this has got to do with lib's how ?

    sorry but anyone who writes about "IT" has read too many press releases and calls HTML codeing

    but enough of slateing

    american express deals with more of its bussiness through the secure bank exchange

    and so use this if you want to

    oh you dont want to pay 20,000 euros for the setup

    are you saying that you are concerned because you want the cheapest solution ?

    ebay hmm really how very modern
    Microsofts B2B BU has somethng to say about that and so do the rest its not the way forward just for people who like to advertise they have a guitar for sale yes I realise that you CAN use it for other things and they make alot of money but really how many DOW/FTSE companys use it for precurment ? I guess at none

    your concerned that you might not get the cheapest deal but you want to have ideals

    sometimes you cant have both

    regards

    john jones

    p.s. I live and where my webpage is are not the same (-;
  • look hailstorm is Microsoft and passport is microsoft YOU DONT HAVE TO USE THEM !

    I wont and I think there might be problems with the laws in differant countrys so frankly my dear ....

    I care that people seem to think that mono can provide a solution to the libary problem

    personally I would like to see a transform from the lib to a native lib rather than doing it @ run time look yes MS has done it for lots of langs but lets face it lots of people worked on it and the boreing libs now they expect people to do the drudgery of cloneing this or should I say writeing it from the spec

    sorry but the java VM gets my vote before this IL from microsoft I mean I still dont understand how you can have pointers and make it work well

    regards

    john jones

    p.s. you can target lots of langs at the java/sun virtual machine e.g. python see http://www.jython.org
  • are you totaly insane ?

    where do you live ?

    personally I live in a place where I spend my money where I like and on what I like

    now you dont have to buy a MS product and SUN does quite well as a company

    apple does quite well

    red hat does quite well

    I dont see china 1/5 of the worlds population guv or people useing many MS product mostly because they are too poor to afford them

    now are you argueing that because you live in the United States and most people there use Microsfot products that the world uses Microsoft products ?

    its like saying that the intel pentium and x86 is the dominant microprocessor

    how many cell phones use an intel pentium ?

    get a grip

    next you will be telling me that jonathan lebed should give back the money he made beacuse people are dumb

    look from a technical point of veiw which is what I WAS TRYING to get mono seems to be a big project that needs lots of full time people working on it OR alot of time and dedication like the linux kernel which didnt appear in the last year (-;

    try and look at this in terms of lib's
    (you know what you link your programs against or dont you get that ?)

    being stupid is forgiveable if you learn from it

    regards

    john jones
  • Could it be because Ximian is causing a lot of hype over vaporware?

    .NET is not vapourware. People who claim that .NET is vapour do not understand the .NET development platform or have a curious definition of vapourware. And the Mono project is a very real, though new project, to implement the .NET development platform as free software. If you check the mono mailing list archives (I can only assume you aren't currently on the list), you'll see how quickly the project has gained developers who have implemented over 230 classes in a remarkably short period of time.

    How *much* do we have to read about Mono, a project that only exists in name and hype? If Mono is so good, shut up and show us the code.

    okay: here it is [go-mono.com].

    There should be an anonymous CVS server available soon, too.

  • Ximian wants people to spend _their_ free time and energy helping Ximian make a profit. "Come help us code! Do it for the good of open source! For free software's sake!"

    You have a really slanted view of how free software in business works. There are two reasons (at least) why Ximian began the Mono project. The first is that Miguel, Nat, and some other folks looked carefully at the .NET development platform and found it be a very well architected software development platform for which there was no free software implementation. The second reason is that the .NET development platform is well-suited to the direction Ximian is moving in and will aid them in developing the next generation of their applications and services. Yes, of course they want developer support from outside the company. This is no secret. This has never been a secret of open source/free software business models. Bob Young of Red Hat fame has said on numerous occasions that a company as small as Red Hat could never produce an entire operating system, documentation, support, and everything else that is Red Hat. They harness the power of open source. Ximian is no exception. Most of the GNOME developers do not work for Ximian. Most of the .NET developers working on Mono do not work for Ximian. Most of the Linux kernel developers do not work for any Linux distribution company. So yes, Ximian wants involvement and they've gotten it, and they'll get more. Why? Because there are a lot of developers that have been using .NET or at least looking at the architecture, and want a free software implementation.

    This gained support from the free software purists. Now Ximian is attempting to get free software coders on the Mono bandwagon by spewing crap about how technically superior it is.Compared to what, Miguel?

    Compared to conventional means of developing software. Read the Mono FAQ [go-mono.com]

    Nothing EXISTS that is comparable to this system.

    Precisely. I couldn't have said it better myself, nor could Ximian marketing people. Nothing in itself is particularly innovative about .NET--what makes it interesting is how it all fits together. It's a good, clean development platform that allows for a whole lot of interoperability.

  • Good? Subjective. Clean? Subjective. Interoperable? We will see about that one. Technical superiority can only be claimed once it has been proven. Right now we can only assume software development will be better after Microsoft launches .NET into the world.

    Yes, it's subjective. I was stating my opinion of the platform.

    They are using OO style programming in C to implement Mono for godsakes!

    Actually, Mono is being implemented in C#. Download the code. [go-mono.com] In some cases, existing GNOME libraries will be used to implement specific parts of Mono such as the GUI elements or database access. The actual .NET classes themselves are being implemented in C#. Your point about OO programming in C seems orthogonal--Once you learn the semantics and conventions of OO programming in C, or any other language, it's not so strange looking. C++ was originally just a set of preprocessor macros built on top of C, e.g. But I digress...

  • You downloaded the runtime. The .NET classes are C#. The latest snapshot can be grabbed here [go-mono.com].
  • The problem with Hailstorm is that it is intentionally designed to allow centralized control of the service. Making this open source is not a solution ... or rather, it merely postpones the problem (as you said, look at ICANN). The correct answer is to redesign from first principles, with only the provided services being held (approximately) constant.

    This probably isn't that difficult. Probably. Various posters have claimed that a collection of currently extant packages provide most of the services. But to make it successful, it would need to be collected into a single package that could be installed on different platforms, etc., and would need well designed interfaces, both user and application. And many other details would need to be solved. Like how to create a distributed trust. Not that these are new, answers to most of these problems have already been discussed, and some of them have been implemented. But they would need to be merged. DOT.GNU has their work cut out for them. But the idea must be the elimination of a centralized control, of the effort is nearly wasted (i.e., it only buys a couple of years of time).


    Caution: Now approaching the (technological) singularity.
  • From Miguel's comments on Passport:

    People might just not care: In a poll to US citizens a couple of decades ago, it was found that
    most people did not care about the rights they were given by the Bill of Rights, which lead to a number of laws to be passed in the US that eliminated most of the rights people had.


    Does anyone have any idea what he's referring to?
    (More so about the polling than the actual erosion of rights)

    --
  • Can someone tell us what this does exactly? Just curious...

  • Chuck, could you expand on your previous assertion, please?
    Your point (3) is clearly bogus. The option still exists to use whatever technologies are appropriate for whatever you want to do. Java will still exist, so will a million other choices. Not only that, but people who want to use a .NET style platform will now have the choice of Microsofts Proprietary version and a Free version. How can that be bad?

    Some people seem to think that Mono somehow legitimises Microsofts .NET strategy. Microsofts .NET strategy doesn't need legitimising. It's coming, millions of dollars in advertising and Microsofts (virtual) monopoly tell us that .NET is coming. I don't see why a Free Software company shouldn't ride that wave and hopefully make some money along the way.
  • by Chuck Chunder ( 21021 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @05:18AM (#2183935) Homepage Journal
    Now, why on earth did de Icaza bring in Gnome and KDE into this discussion?
    He didn't so much bring them into the discussion as attempt to rule them out of it. The anti-gnome trolls (I won't call them KDE trolls, as any relationship to the KDE project probably begins and ends in their own diminutive minds, likewise there aren't any GNOME trolls, just anti-KDE trolls) were jumping on bandwagons as soon as Ximian made their announcement because of Ximians closeness to GNOME. Miguel was simply trying to cut out some of the pointless noise by trying to get people to think outside GNOME and KDE.
    Secondly, it means we are forced into Microsoft's vision of the future
    No it doesn't. It means we have another choice.
    Thirdly, it does nothing to stop Microsoft from bait-and-switching.
    In itself that is true. And if Mono fails to be a credible alternative to Microsofts implementation then it's lost. But that doesn't mean it's not worth trying. To state that an Open Source (or Free) implementation of .NET can't succeed comes scarily close to stating that an Open development model is not superior.
    Fourth, Ximian don't seem to ever stop and wonder whether they should actually be following Microsoft at all
    I think quite the opposite is true. I'm sure the folks at Ximian have spent a lot more time considering exactly this and with a far more open mind than the average person with an opinion on this matter.
  • Where's the real stuff? There's nothing here that even resembles a GUI or database classes? There is a string, so I guess I could build a console app with it that outputs "Hello World".

    You can find all of the classes documented at http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url= /library/en-us/cpref/html/cpref_start.asp
  • Most of the ire that Ximian causes is attributable to de Icaza. Look at this quote, for example:

    de Icaza said, ".NET is the next step towards language unification, but you have to look at this technology with cold eyes, and not let your passions be in the middle (against Microsoft, for Linux, for KDE, against GNOME, etc) or you will live a life of bitterness."

    Now, why on earth did de Icaza bring in Gnome and KDE into this discussion? They have absolutely nothing to do with .NET or Mono (except, presumably, that he'll be working with people to make Gnome front ends more than he will to make KDE front ends). While the point he's making is a good one, you can bet that loads of people will turn it into a Gnome vs KDE bashing session (I thought they'd all died down a year ago, but the wierd desktop trolls seem to be back with a vengance).

    Mono is worrying for several reasons. Firstly, it validates .NET as a viable multi-OS platform, and legitimizes areas of Microsoft PR where they try and portray themselves as a lovely, caring sharing company with open standards, but minus all that nasty fraud and anarchy you get with the GPL.

    Secondly, it means we are forced into Microsoft's vision of the future, with bloated common language runtimes (the idea of which I've always hated, in Java as well), and a massive standard library which Microsoft are free to define (and look how good a job they did with the Windows API).

    Thirdly, it does nothing to stop Microsoft from bait-and-switching - having their OSes include 'NET-XP with special new features', which just happen to be unspecified and incompatible with the ECMA specification. 95% of the people using .NET will be on Windows, and won't care if it doesn't interoperate with some strange reimplementation made by a company they've never heard of.

    Fourth, Ximian don't seem to ever stop and wonder whether they should actually be following Microsoft at all. de Icaza has said many times that he wants Gnome to be more like Windows (which makes the Gnome trolls that bash KDE seem even more pathetic than they actually are). Windows has a lot of interesting and already implemented technology in OLE/COM/DCOM/whatever - but that doesn't mean that we should blindly follow in their footsteps.

    All that said, they seem to be set in their decision to go ahead with Mono, and I wish them luck.

  • hmm... I'd forgotten about that account, to be honest (I've not been in Oxford for quite a while). When I can remember the password to change my settings to the i.am redirection, I'll update it :)

    Until then, consider me a man of mystery.
  • The release candidate of the Vorbis decoder was only released last month, so give hardware companies some time to implement the algorithms... (Vorbis decoding also currently takes quite a bit more memory than MP3 decoding - this is being worked on). The release candidate of the encoder will be out in the next few weeks: once it reaches version 1 then, believe me, you'll be seeing a lot more of Vorbis.

    Personally, I'm going to be re-encoding all my CDs to Vorbis (if only because it'll save me about a gig of hard disc space).

    On the .PNG issue: yes, Slashdot are being enormously hypocritical in slamming UNISYS and then continuing to use GIFs, particularly when PNG support is very widespread.
  • dotGNU isn't a passport equivalent, it's intended to be a complete replacement for .NET, using its own design (unlike Mono, which is a reimplementation of .NET). They also want to have a model with distributed code compliled to a common language runtime.

    What's confusing me is why they feel they have to completely reinvent technologies which have been around for years (and that's ignoring debate about the whole design concept behind dotGnu and .NET). In the .NET example, there is no need to use C# for example - a bastardised halfbreed of C++, Java and Visual Basic. The arrogance of Microsoft in thinking that they can just make tens of thousands of programmers learn a new computer language is incredible -- even more amazing is that they seem to be succeeding! In the dotGnu and .NET examples - why do they need to invent a whole new bytecode? We already have the choice of several alternative (Java bytecode, Lisp compilers even, the GCC backend language, Python bytecode, etc). Years of development time spent on something that seems utterly, completely useless.
  • The problem with this faq-as-press-release is that it really doesn't give us the right view of .NET. What, for example, exactly is an 'XML Web Service'? It's not described in the document you cut+pasted. What is used is about 20 meaningless buzzphrases: '.NET experiences', 'XML Web services', etc.

    What is interesting is that the only uses they have mentioned for .NET are Hailstorm and '.NET experiences' using Passport. This shows how central they believe Passport is to .NET, and reveals why they can be happy with a reimplementation of .NET-minus-Passport: with out Passport, you won't be able to provide alternatives to any of the bits of .NET which Microsoft care about.

    Thanks for posting the FAQ, vacuous and empty though it was :)

  • The way I see it, MS is introducing the abstraction of the CLR as a way to get people writing programs which are portable to the new 64 bit PC architectures around the corner, before they are available. If all Windows apps are already written to the CLR, then Windows XP running on a 64-but Intel/AMD consumer desktop will be an easier sell.


    Wow. Very interesting - I'd not thought of that, but it makes a lot of sense. They are going to have to transition their user base over to IA64 eventually (and it'll be a long, slow process): and given that IA32 code would have a major performance penalty on IA64 anyway, they can see a CLR as providing a great way to move between platforms. I've been wondering for ages what the advantage to Microsoft is in moving to a bytecode, and IA64 seems like the factor that would have kicked it off.



    Microsoft released all the specs to ECMA so that any idiot can write a compiler to compile any language to the CLR (gcc2clr anyone?)


    The problem with this, just like the problem with the Java bytecode, is that the CLR isn't language neutral: some languages are a much better fit. There have been reports, for example, that ActiveState are finding it very hard to get a .NET port of Perl working properly. The .NET CLR is (as is to be expected) C# oriented, just like Java's is Java oriented. The CLR isn't magically better than Java.


    I suppose a project would be to put the CLR as a GCC backend (given that bytecodes are just virtualised processors). It would probably be horribly inefficient, though.

  • Python isn't pure, it's a lovely mixed metaphor language. You can do 'old style' modular code, or object oriented code, or functional programming. And as for complaining about 'main', what does this looks like:

    if __name__=='__main__': print "Main!"

  • by jonathan_ingram ( 30440 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @04:11AM (#2183944) Homepage
    But, once again, this isn't a matter of Gnome vs KDE. Ximian are deeply involved in Gnome, it's true, but .NET and Mono are seperate from that. There is nothing stopping KDE from using the work of the Mono project (as a slightly seperate example, people have already produced working code which adds a SOAPDCOP layer to KDE, which would make remote KDE administration much easier).

    Who has been claiming that Ximian are evil? They are misguided idealists, and will probably be very disenchanted in a couple of years after Microsoft has finished playing with them, but they are not evil at all.

    Please try and seperate GNOME/KDE and 'for Mono'/'against Mono' in your mind. THEY ARE DIFFERENT.
  • "1. How does a schema copyright limit a competitor?

    2. Can't this be circumvented using a clean room approach, much like the clones did with IBM BIOS in the early days?"

    DMCA.

    "can't blame me for being skeptical in believing Microsoft is going to get away with screwing over all of these corporations without offering a competitive service."

    They have been doing it for years why not now?
  • Most people appear not to like Hailstorm becuase it gives Microsoft control over an import intermediary service. I'd aggree with that.

    However, there have been suggestions that it be replaced be an open source version (such as dotGNU). I'm not sure what how that would work.
    Hailstore is a service. We could certainly write server and service software that does the same job, but that isn't what makes Hailstore what it is. You need to have a recognized central server that everyone agrees on and recognizes, even more than one. It has to be trusted. It has to be scalable. Those things don't happen just because you hack together code. That requires business and laywer since.

    Someone somewhere will put together an organization to run these services, they will comply with security, safety and privacy laws so they will have their stable of lawyers. Eventually one of these services may even become respectable and trustworhty enough to overtake Passport and Hailstorm.

    BUT! Whenever you have this much control and authority over a widely used resource, there eventually comes power, corruption and collusion. EVEN IF IT STARTED OUT AS A GOOD OPEN PROJECT, THE WEASLES WILL SMELL MONEY AND FIND THEIR WAY IN. Just look at the ICANN.

    Replacing Hailstorm will take more than software and protocols, It will take an Honest Open Project Management. That's hard to find, and it can't be hacked together.

  • But the idea must be the elimination of a centralized control,

    All true,

    Where I was trying to go was to define business trust, not security trust (although that is necessary also). Businesses need to know:

    1. Is my money safe and on its way to where it belongs? (profit)

    2. Am I really dealing with who I think I am dealing with? (liability)

    3. When something goes wrong, who do I call that can REALLY fix it? (performance/reliability)

    4. Will all of my investment in this technology still be usefull in x years? (investment)


    The first and second can be physically possible with open solutions, though businesses tent to understand names and contracts better than they understand software and protocols. Lawyers want to here it form other lawyers. They need a name, a presence to deal with.

    The Third is probably the kicker. In an open decentralized system, who does have enough authority to fix any problem? That comes with a response requirement, not just a "post it on some mailing list and it will most likely get fixed by someone". This means fixing data problems, not program bugs. Any authority that can honestly guarentee fixes is likely to also fall enough into the category of controller that they eventually accumulate weasles and become another ICANN. Without that much authority, businesses won't trust the process.

    A decentralized system would not be able to offer guarenteed performance. As an example, SMPT and E-Mail. (a bad example of security, but an example of decentralized process.) When things go wrong in E-mail (such as spam) there isn't really any single point of contact to fix it. you have to chase it down and negotiate with each provider; No fun for anyone.

    The last point is more likely to be plus for open source than for Pasport or Hailstorm. MS has too many leashes and is willing to pull them.

  • look hailstorm is Microsoft and passport is microsoft YOU DONT HAVE TO USE THEM !

    That's going to get tougher and tougher. How far are you willing to go? I noticed it was mentioned that American Express and Ebay are going to start using it. Oh joy.

    One by one, your favorite addiction or need is going to migrate to this and at one point, you'll collapse cause basically, humans have a herd mentality and everyone else is going to do it. So you'll either fall in line or you'll end up a recluse in some shack in Minnesota.

    It's fucking scarey. Over reacting? Maybe. But after listening to my father preach (er, he *is* a Reverand) about the end times, mark of the beast, and about how those that refuse to adopt the mark of the beast will be unable to buy or sell, this scheme has a lot of the same ideas.

    Maybe Gates is the anti-Christ! I used to think the entire "one world" idea in the book of Revelation in the Bible could never happen because the countries of this world can never agree on anything. But they all seem to have agreed to install Microsoft on their computers...

    But seriously, the only thing that will stop this is some grossly inaccurate scare-tactic rumor spread through the churches of the world accusing Microsoft of being an agent of the devil.

    So remember this when you reach the decision about what to do when your favorite sites and businesses change over to Passport.

    p.s. No, I don't think Gates is the anti-christ. He just has an obligation to his shareholders (and his own power trips) to lock everyone into Microsoft so they can leverage their installed base to sustain their insane growth. But if they can use fear mongering and step around truths when attacking GPL, then hell, why not! :)

    p.p.s. While humans have a herd mentality, they don't like to think they are part of it. Witness any fad and how quickly it rises and falls. Remember the killer minivan market in the U.S. 15 years ago? When every Mom started buying Minivans instead of station wagons, the market took off like mad. Then when they all realized they were all driving the same thing, it became very uncool and they all started to run out and buy big-ass SUVs to be different. Now all soccer moms drive SUVs. So there is some hope for the world after all... :-)

  • by weave ( 48069 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @06:06AM (#2183949) Journal
    are you totaly insane ?

    Not totally...

    where do you live ?

    Not in a country like you appear to be from where their government is in bed with Microsoft [theregister.co.uk]. :-)

    It's called a slippery slope, and my comments were mainly about Passport, not Mono (and based on what I read in the article from Miguel). As an IT manager, I've been shown a Microsoft promotional video of how great the future is, with cutesy little families accessing windows everywhere on all types of devices to buy stuff, communicate, beam medical records here and there, etc, etc... It's a video about the life of this clumsy goof who forgets his cell phone, gets run over by a bicycle delivery person, and some other silly things. Ever seen it? It's the vision Microsoft has for us, and that's what they'd like to see happen. It gave me shivers.

    So, as an IT decision maker, you are saying that I shouldn't be concerned about where everything is going? When someone in my company proposes that we move authentication to passport, I shouldn't be worried? That when someone proposes we outsource a lot of our functionality to some .NET service or whatever it is, I shouldn't be the least bit concerned?

    As for the end-user end, which is what my comments were based on, beings that I deal heavily with American Express AND e-bay, having them switch authentication to passport will force me to either go along or shop elsewhere. Shopping elsewhere is often a pain-in-the ass. What happens when my choices keep dwindling down and down? I think most people will just give in and get a passport account.

    Please explain to me why I shouldn't be concerned about it from this perspective.

  • It blue screens W2K.
    Bug report submitted...
  • by Mindbridge ( 70295 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @06:52AM (#2183951) Homepage
    There seem to be a lot of untold assumptions that a lot of people appear to be making about Mono, that I cannot quite see as being correct, but are nevertheless important points for discussion. Here are the more important ones:

    Assumption 1: Mono will have good performance

    I am labeling this as an "assumption", because for some strange reason Mono's expected performance is not discussed here, even though there are multitudes of people consistently bashing Java for being slow.

    Since the CLR is essentially identical to a Java VM in terms of high-level design, the execution of CLI code would be performed by using much the same approaches that are used for executing Java bytecode. If you look at Ximian's CLR implementation roadmap [go-mono.com], you will see that it follows exactly the same path that the Java implementations took, except that it stops short before the last step -- runtime optimization. (Just to note that this last step is the most difficult one, but it is exactly what allowed Java to get close to C/C++ in terms of performance. JIT helps, but it simply does not cut it -- it is not enough).

    Now, it took more than 5 years of intensive work for the JVMs to reach their current level of performance. How long will it take for Ximian's CLR impelementation to become fast enough and not be branded by the people on /. as slow? Obviously they can benefit from some of the Java work, but personally I feel that it would be very unlikely if that happens within less than 3 years. (although it would be nice if it did)

    Assumption 2: .NET is standardized, so we can do multi-platform development

    By now we all know that C# and the CLR have been submitted for ECMA standartization. What is important to realize is that while the C# language may be standardized, most of its libraries would not be. if you look at the list of libraries that are submitted for standartization [microsoft.com], you can count 257 entities (classes, interfaces, delegates, etc.) defined in there. On the other hand, if you count the entities provided by the libraries in .NET beta1, and exclude the server-specific stuff, the OS-specific stuff, and even WinForms, you will get a number that is very close to 2000. So in effect Microsoft is standardizing at most 13% of the libraries it provides to Windows developers (the figure would be even lower if we include WinForms and other libs that might also be of interest).

    What are the implications of this fact? The standardized libraries might allow OSS developers to build more extensive libraries base on pure CLI (w/o native code) and thus create an environment for multi-platform development. The suggestion to use the .NET libraries for this purpose, however, would fly in the face of everything that we have learned about Microsoft in the past -- as long as they have a monopoly, they will play games with the API, and will turn the whole endevour into a perpetual tail chasing.

    It seems to me that Ximian do recognize this fact, but I am not very clear how they plan to counter the problem. In the article Nat said "I hope it doesn't happen" in reference to Microsoft changing the API, and that an open source version would "reduce the chance that Microsoft will be able to do that". If that is their strategy, well... good luck.

    Assumption 3: You need .NET (Mono) to implement or use Web services

    This is one of the reasons given in the article as to why Mono is necessary, and I am sorry to say this, but it is complete bull. The Web services that MS is advocating are based almost entirely on SOAP and XML, which are completely platform-agnostic and language-agnostic -- that's what MS has been touting as an advantage all along. You can communicate to a Web service using C and a set of SOAP libraries if you want to. If Ximian wanted to have a safe development environment to implement and use Web services, there is already a very mature one in existence that provides superb SOAP and XML support -- Java.

    There is only one objective reason that I see for selecting .NET over Java, and it is not mentioned in the article at all: the CLR is designed to support multiple languages, unlike the JVM. The catch here is that the JVM already supports a hell of a lot of languages other than Java [tu-berlin.de] and that languages have to be bastardized [microsoft.com] to be used on the CLR, but still, I guess it does hold some marginal advantage.

    Finally, as you can see above, the whole supposed licensing advantage of .NET vs. Java is a complete red herring. In fact, Java holds some practical advantages in that respect: In Java concrete specifications are provided not only the main libraries, but also for many optional ones. Changes in the Java API must be approved via a fairly democratic process as part of the Java Community Process [jcp.org], of which OSS groups such as the Apache foundation are also members, and is open to entry by others as well. All this has allowed a lot of implementations of the various Java libraries by a lot of independent vendors. Will this happen with .NET? Anyone willing to bet money on that one?

  • I don't think they would need to support C#. Just the .NET virtual machine.

  • specs to ECMA so that any idiot can write a compiler to compile any language to the CLR

    It's not quite as easy as you make it sound. Consider for example ActiveState's Perl.NET implementation and the notes on their web site.

    In our Perl for .NET Research, we found that the initial approach of directly compiling to the .NET runtime had some limitations.

    [...]

    In the meantime, ActiveState will provide an alternate solution to make existing Perl code available from within the .NET Framework. Our PerlNET technology will allow .NET Framework code to access Perl code running outside .NET using the traditional Perl interpreter.


    It seems that the byte code of the .NET platform has been mainly designed to the C family of languages. Other languages will have difficulties to adapt. Even C++ has been turned into Managed C, and one of the main design goals of C# has been to offer the C++ developers a new language for Win32 development.

    more reliable for cross-platform stuff

    Care to inform us about those new reliability features?

  • I tried to find the ECMA specs from Microsoft web site on things like WebForms but couldn't. Maybe you could provide a link where they can be found?

    Also I'd be interested in taking a look at the ECMA specs on ADO.NET and ASP.NET. If you'd have links on those too, I'd appreciate it.

    Please stop posting things about things you know nothing about. Don't sprout rhetoric and stay to the facts.

    We're all here to learn. Perhaps we will once you show us where to find the full specs on all .NET libraries? (I'm really interested in WebForms).

  • Yes, I've seen this.

    It only contains the specs for 70 classes. That is ridiculous. You cannot build an application with this.

    Where's the real stuff? There's nothing here that even resembles a GUI or database classes? There is a string, so I guess I could build a console app with it that outputs "Hello World".

    This is nothing compared to the thousands of classes Java provides.
  • If they could port mercury to CLR, they can port anything.

    Then why does Eiffel# exist? Why isn't there a fully compliant Eiffel available on .NET?

    And why did they bother with Managed C++? You'd think if they can port any language to .NET they'd make damn sure it has a compliant C++ language. Yet they were unable to do it.

    Why is VB.NET so radically different from the earlier versions of VB? Why aren't the older VB versions supported on .NET?

    .NET does not have a universal virtual machine.
  • I don't have 3-4 years to wait so I can do with .NET what I can do with Java today.

    And your thousands of classes aren't cross-platform or publicly specified.
  • The language does not matter to me. The libraries do. With a good cross-platform libs I could do VB for all I care. And btw, JVM can run more languages than .NET.

    You claimed these libraries are available, and submitted to ECMA. I called you for it, and you didn't have anything to show for.
  • Actually they are cross-platform and I have seen them on many OS's but you're right - they aren't all publically specified (yet). Which is fair but remember that Java pre V1.0 didn't have them all publically specified yet. .NET isn't even released yet. Who's to say what's going to happen post Beta 2?


    You said, in what started this thread:

    They submitted the CLI, CLR, and CTS to ECMA as well as the libraries. The specs are now freely available from Microsoft, HP, and IBM's sites. They have also submitted the libraries. They have also published these specs in book form - I know because I have them and I don't work for Microsoft. Please stop posting things about things you know nothing about. Don't sprout rhetoric and stay to the facts.

    I asked for these libraries and their specifications, yet you have nothing to show for other than excuses. Maybe you're the one who should stick to facts, no?

  • no they haven't all been submitted. It's my hope that Microsoft does this

    But that is not what I will put my bets on. I'd rather go with something I know is openly specified.

    You are 100% right in that it's the libraries that count and not the language. So why not consider using C#, VB.NET, PERL.NEt or whatever?

    If those were the only languages available, C# would be the one I'd consider. But you don't include Java in your list, and C# doesn't offer any benefits over Java. So why bother?

    I have never had to pay for Java compiler, or any other Java tools I use. I have tons of Open Source Java code available to me. Why would I bother with Microsoft's expensive tools and platform dependant libraries? Doesn't seem like I'd win anything.

    Do you have requirements for cross-paltform?

    Absolutely. At the moment I am working on a server software that has been deployed on Win32, Linux, Solaris, MacOS and HP-UX. In addition there's a host of management tools that are both web enabled or standalone cross-platform GUI applications. Cross-platform is a necessity.

    Most organizations have long since decided on a platform and have no need for cross-paltform.

    A single organization may have decided on a platform but they all didn't decide on the same platform. I have alot to thank Java for for being able to provide a single codebase to serve all those people. One of them is a big HP-UX shop, another is all Solaris, some are W2K shops. Alot of them have interest in Linux.

    .NET doesn't offer anything even close to this. It simply is not an option.

  • Having Java the language in the hands of some standards committee doesn't buy me a thing. It does not help me to develop applications. I think it is better to keep a language out of committees while it is still evolving. I also think Sun did wisely to create JCP and use that for the development of both language, the virtual machine and all of the libraries.

    I do not consider C# being in ECMA an advantage at all. To me it means nothing. It is just a PR stunt.
  • I can't get the page to work work with Netscape. Ah well. Too bad. Maybe it is a telling sign what .NET will be.

    Anyway... I don't know what's on that page but.. I'm not looking for the Javadoc equivalent of the .NET classes (I'm sure they exist), I'm looking for the specification of .NET libraries.
  • Passport says it solves the problems of having to keep track of different logins for all the sites you access. Well, most sensible people use different logins on different sites so the sysadmin of EBay can't access your bank account, for example. If you don't like this: use the same userid/password for all the site you access. Of course that's less secure but that's what Passport proposes.

    ---

    Also, Miguel suggest that instead of Microsoft holding your login info alternate trusted parties might include your Swiss bank, etc. Well, why not place your info on your home page in a standard format like this: www.myisp.com/~myuserid/profile.xml Then you can point everyone there.

  • about 3 years a go i read an article on microsoft's web site, which i WISH i had saved. it was basically slating the JAVA and J2EE environment and how SUN was targeting networking computing was such a step back in technology. back to the old terminal days of old.

    A similar Microsoft article is still available from Google's cache [google.com].

    --

  • The problem with monopolies is that you actually HAVE to use them. There are no alternatives.

    But this is getting old, and so am I.
  • F7 is the DosKey command to bring up the list of recently used commands.
    Apparently, it doesn't do too well with handling buffered keystrokes while a foreground process is running, so doing this will chop a Windows (works on NT 4 and Win9X if the reports are to be believed) machine down to size.
    Luckily enough, it was a known bug with NT 3.51 and they fixed it back then. Good job, Microsoft! Way to regress those bugs!
    Easy does it!
  • At least not on my W2K Pro machine, and numerous others out there have replicated it. F7 once won't disrupt you; spamming F7 + (enter) multiple times while a foreground process (be it ping, tracerute, dir or whatever) is running will, once the foreground process terminates, err... terminate your kernel.
    Strictly a userland snafu (for now), but not exactly a confidence-builder.
    Easy does it!
  • http://www.passport.com/Business/BusinessQA.asp?lc =1033#General_PPmodel

    Passport's business model is NOT based on reselling information learned from running the Passport service. Microsoft does not perform data mining or sell, rent, or lease any Passport data to any third parties. Moreover, Microsoft does not report Passport data at an individual level.

    this makes it pretty plain that Microsoft does not plan to disseminate any of its customers personal info. the question then remains. are the signed up businesses granted enough control to do the data mining, etc. for themselves?

  • http://www.passport.com/Business/BusinessQA.asp?lc =1033#Tech_ServerComm

    Passport always communicates through the browser. The single sign-in service uses redirection technology, and the express purchase service uses a client-side JavaScript post. More specifically, when a Passport user wants to make a purchase, the Passport wallet server returns the wallet page to the browser, which posts back to our server. The server responds to the browser with a page that contains all the wallet data in hidden form fields and then runs client-side JavaScript that uses onload/submit to cause the browser to post it back to the merchant's server.

    (emphasis added) - now, i don't claim to know much about security, but i have heard of security problems when trusting the client. can anyone more familiar with this topic shed some light on it?

  • I started reading Miguel de Icaza's article about Passport but had to stop halfway through. I'm sorry but I don't have the patience for clueless opinions.

    Every one of the links he points to in his section on "The problems of Passport" fails to support his argument!

    First he talks about a single point of failure and says "Such a failure was predicted, and we recently witnessed got a lot of people worried." While a single point of failure is a problem with Passport, the link he points to is a problem with MSN Messenger and NOT with Hailstorm or Passport which had no problems during the period.

    Next he talks about trust and how "This is not unheard of, as the Microsoft Internet Server had a trojan horse built into that allowed anyone that knew about this to control any server running IIS." Of course as anyone who has been following stories knows that there was no trojan horse involved there - just a comment digging at Netscape and some bad test cases.

    Finally he talks about Security and points out "Hackers have already broken into Microsoft in the past. And the company was unable to figure out for how long their systems had been hacked. " However, anyone with any clue should realize that an internal corporate network is a completely different thing from an external service. Getting into one doesn't get you into the other, for starters and both are used by very different users for very different purposes.

    I couldn't get any further than that. Sheesh!
  • There was a comment, I'm not sure if it was in this discussion or the one from the other day, but it really takes the wind out of my sails. The idea that we'll need .NET and passport the same way that we need MS Office in the business world. What MS seems to be doing is bypassing the server all together. They're saying "We can't win on the server the way we have on the desktop, not with Linux being free. How can we make the server a totally moot point?" Passport seems to be the answer.

    MS is looking to control the net itself (hence the name) and they are going to let everyone else do the work for them. Mono is an important project because it gives Linux the chance to succeed in MS's brave new world (and I'm certain MS will succeed) but it's not Mono or Ximian or even Passport that scares me. It's where MS is going.

    We've known for a long time that MS wanted to control the internet. It was the first real platform challenge to them ever, and that's why they pushed so hard with IE. But that's not really enough, and they realize that now that they control the browser. You can't control the internet as a platform just by controlling the browser, it's still bound by the same rules as before. So what do they do? They make a new platform.

    .NET isn't just a new platform the replace java, but a whole new platform to replace the internet itself as we know it. MS wants all services to communicate via .NET, be it clients and servers written on the platform to do custom transactions or ASP pages. They want to make it as easy as possible for you to write your apps in it (any language you want!) just so long as you're on their platform. Internet Applications will be written in .NET. This isn't about downloading Office as a service, it's about getting the news online or checking your bank account info or any of the other things that are replacing classical style services.

    And MS is going to control all of it.

    Granted, this could all be paranoia here, but I truly believe that MS wants nothing less than total control of the internet, and they've built a great platform in order to do it. This isn't just about privacy or Ximian or Java or any of it, it's about preventing total control of the future (and present really) of communication by a single entity with a penchant for crushing anything in its path. No single corporation should have control of something so important as the platform for the digital world. And the really terrifying part is that I have no idea how to stop it.

    "I may not have morals, but I have standards."
  • Well, my guess is actually if this port succeeds, you'll might see a lot of Open Source .NET projects.

    The passport scheme is used to give users acces to .Net web applications. For a fee this access is granted. If there are OpenSource alternatives to those .Net web apps, which do not use MS Passport, this keeps up the pressure on Microsoft.

    The only way Microsoft could kill OpenSource, is to force Ximian for using MS Passport, but I don't think they will, the article clearly mentions sceptisism on trusting Microsoft (ie. the Kerberos piece).
    --

  • Let's hope so? Let's PRAY so! I've been sitting here trying to write what should be (well, according to the "documentation", anyway ) a simple .aspx page forever now. I've just about had it with this total PIECE OF CRAP that M$ is trying to pass off as an IDE/Runtime Environment. The worst thing is that you can't even trace what is happening, so what looks like perfectly good code is generating errors, seemingly at random. AAAAAAAGGGGHHHH!!!

    May I suggest a new mod category - "Frustrated as HELL"?

  • Well, I don't know whether to curse you or praise you. I can write Java code all day long, no problem. I haven't had much problem at all writing straight C# class files. I don't think my programming skills are the problem, generally speaking. But if you were to say that I had a problem making this convoluted ASP.Net crap work, you would be closer to the truth. So, I ask you, is that me or the environment?

  • You asked:"Now, why on earth did de Icaza bring in Gnome and KDE into this discussion?"

    Peterley brought it up, actually, by saying that Mono a "dangerously ignorant" GNOME attempt to fix all of its inherent brokenness, which he blames on using C rather than C++. Then he goes on to state that Mono, GNOME, and C should be abandoned in favor of Java, KDE, and C++.

    Miguel mentioned, and dismissed, the extraneous passions that have already been brought into the fray here.

    Other issues you bring up:
    I don't think that there's much that Microsoft can do to improve their image in the eyes of the Justice Department. They have been convicted of Sherman Act antitrust violations. Submitting one language to a standards body doesn't make them any less guilty.

    If we as a communtiy get involved in C#/CLR specifications with ECMA, then that specification won't be dominated by MS only.
    We're living in a Microsoft-dominated present. Using .NET is admitting that, and taking steps to bridge the divide so we can bring ISVs to our platform.

    Microsoft is still guilty of a shocking number of antitrust violations and other assorted naughtiness. I imagine that they will try to break the standard. If they do that, we'll have to point to the standard and say "Microsoft is incompatible with our widely deployed, cheaper, better, commodity, Free, etc. software." With any luck, the Justice Department will peer over their shoulders to keep them on the straight and narrow as well.

    Aaron Weber
    Ximian, Inc.
  • Ximian is stupid. Mono is worse. They are quite simply stupid. If they want any kind of wide acceptance they should use less "original" names.
  • Choice is a good thing.

    Oh, yup, yup, it is!

    But, like you pointed out, it's hard for non-aware users to know about choice when everyone's forcing Hailstorm and Passport down their necks.

    But that is the crux of the problem with the MS monopoly - most people are unaware. If we wish to have a hope of an open and standards-based web, we can't rely on people making decisions based on the best technology - we have already seen plenty of examples of superior technologies (i.e. V2000 video) going to the wall or being excluded from certain markets due to heavy duty marketing by a competitor.

    And if people don't know or understand a problem, they can't be expected to care about the result, even if they are 'harmed' by that ignorance.

    So, I think we agree, except you still fail to address my point about the way MS will leverage wide acceptance of .NET/etc to give them a stranglehold on the identity market!!

    MS knows that - MS Passport is a master strategy by Microsoft - it gives them control of web services and a huge slice of the web commerce pie. However, MS will only see this happen if MS Passport is the only accredited Identity server. Hopefully dotGNU will make that nightmare fade away - given the widespread need for authentication services, I don't see Unix web development servers wanting to authenticate exclusively against a MS-solution. Mono's existence will not make any difference to the MS Passport strategy. Mono does not have to use MS Passport for it's authentication - in fact Mono does not require authentication for general use either. Mono is a much more general project than just web services - it is, in essence, a development layer.

    Cheers,

    Toby Haynes

  • So this is about:

    • .NET technologies including C#
      Actually it is just the CLR and C# parts, plus libraries to support these bits
    • Passport and Hailstorm

    You really haven't understood this bit have you? There is NOTHING in Mono that deals with Passport and Hailstorm. Sheesh!

    Mono is saying .NET/C# technologies are great for us hackers to copy. We can even get MS to agree and help us!

    I don't see any signs of MS helping the Mono project. Far from it - MS will be quite happy to watch it develop at arms length. All the communication between MS and Ximian reported has been clarification of the specs, rather than support discussions.

    Mono is saying, we don't care about the second bit: Passport and Hailstorm. We can even do our own, super-groovy, hacker's version!

    Actually, Ximian probably does care about the Passport and Hailstorm stuff. But they don't need to - the GNU project had dotGNU to counter that part of the MS strategy.

    The problem that I and many others have been trying to point out to people is that MS' strategy is indeed to 'open up' the technologies and platforms - because, like in the case of Windows, it buys leverage and dominance on the layer above.

    Yes - if you have an Open standard that relies entirely on some closed, unobtainable server layer, then you are totally at the mercy of that server layer. If you'd actually bothered to read the information floating around, you would have realised that the Mono project does not require Passport or Hailstorm to be of use to developers. On it's own, Mono is still a useful project and allows developers to move C# projects off the MS Windows platform onto other OS's, plus you get all the integrated Common Language runtime with the advantages of integrated garbage collection, exception handling and cross-language class re-use. You have a class you like in C++, and you want to wrap it in some other language, say CLOS, then if the CLR supports CLOS, you can use it there.

    But with the dotGNU project as well, that unobtainable server layer suddenly has an open source rival. So you can write .NET-style web applications and authenticate against a distributed dotGNU server set without having to round trip anywhere near a MS-authentication server.

    As more and more CTOs and dull technical managers buy into the rapidly-spreading .NET platform (whether MS or open source), and more and more CEOs and dull government departments buy into the easy-easy Hailstorm community, it will be as impossible to do anything in your daily personal life without Passport/Hailstorm as it is now impossible to do anything in daily business life without Office.

    And if we didn't have dotGNU and Mono, where would we be? Look at it this way - lets assume that we drop dotGNU and Mono now. Corporations that rely on Windows will be implementing Windows NET OS's as part of their normal upgrade cycle. Most people-in-the-street customers will buy it without knowing anything about the debate raging in technical circles. Microsoft will have at about half of its users using .NET services within two years of launch, regardless of whether there is an open source alternative which is not controlled by MS. At this point, MS has effectively balkanized the web - you either have MS Windows .NET and can use the newest web applications and services, or you have a platform such as Linux which is locked out of this. If you thought that the Internet Explorer monopoly was bad for the HTML standard and lead to IE-only web sites, wait until .NET rolls out. Then you will understand just how exclusionary the .NET plan is.

    Or we can support the Mono and dotGNU projects. We can make use of the code built in C# and port it to other platforms. We can take advantage of the cross-language abilities of the CLR in our own programs without having to pay even lip-service to MS. We can authenticate against dotGNU servers and move MS .NET projects out into the open.

    Choice is a good thing.

    Cheers,

    Toby Haynes

  • Everytime there is a story posted about .NET, there seems to be a huge discussion about what .NET is. I think Microsoft has done a horrible job explaining it to the IT world, but that is partly because it encompasses a bunch of different technologies. I took this from the microsoft site to help clarify what exactly .NET is.



    .NET Defined

    Quite simply, .NET is Microsoft's platform for XML Web services. XML Web services allow applications to communicate and share data over the Internet, regardless of operating system or programming language.

    The Microsoft .NET platform includes a comprehensive family of products, built on XML and Internet industry standards, that provide for each aspect of developing, managing, using, and experiencing XML Web services. XML Web services will become part of the Microsoft applications, tools, and servers you already use today--and will be built into new products to meet all of your business needs.

    More specifically, there are five areas where Microsoft is building the .NET platform today, namely: Tools, Servers, XML Web Services, Clients, and .NET Experiences.


    .NET Experiences

    Description:
    .NET Experiences are XML Web services that allow you to access information across the Internet and from standalone applications in an integrated way that saves you time and money. Microsoft will deliver .NET Experiences for individuals and for businesses. Some of the products that Microsoft is transitioning into .NET Experiences are MSN®, bCentral(TM), and Visual Studio .NET.


    Clients

    Description:
    Clients are PCs, laptops, workstations, phones, handheld computers, Tablet PCs, game consoles, and other smart devices. What makes these devices "smart" is their ability to access XML Web services. Smart clients use software that supports XML Web services, and enable you to access your data regardless of the location, type, and number of clients you use. Some of the .NET client software Microsoft will offer are: Windows CE, Windows Embedded, Window 2000, and the upcoming Windows XP. This software will power PCs, laptops, workstations, smart phones, handheld computers, Tablet PCs, and XBox game consoles.


    Services

    Description:
    In addition to developers creating XML Web services, Microsoft is creating a core set of building block services that perform routine tasks and act as the backbone for developers to build upon. The first set of XML Web services being built, codenamed "HailStorm", is user-centric services oriented around people, rather than specific devices, networks, or applications. "HailStorm" is based upon the Microsoft Passport user authentication system. With "HailStorm", users receive relevant information, as they need it, delivered to the devices they're using, and based on preferences they have established.

    Web sites vs. XML Web services
    Web sites are about presenting information to a user: they are the communication vehicle for servers to talk to users. XML Web services offer a direct means for applications to interact with other applications. Applications hosted internally, as well as on remote systems, can communicate via the Internet by using XML and SOAP messages.


    Servers:

    Description:
    The .NET Enterprise Servers, including the Windows 2000 server family, make up Microsoft .NET's server infrastructure for deploying, managing, and orchestrating XML Web services. Designed with mission-critical performance in mind, they provide enterprises with the agility they need to integrate their systems, applications, and partners through XML Web services, and the flexibility to adapt to changing business requirements. The .NET Enterprise Servers are:

    Application Center 2000 to deploy and manage highly available and scalable Web applications;
    BizTalk(TM) Server 2000 to build XML-based business processes across applications and organizations;
    Commerce Server 2000 for quickly building scalable e-commerce solutions;
    Content Management Server 2001 to manage content for dynamic e-business Web sites;
    Exchange Server 2000 to enable messaging and collaboration, anytime, anywhere;
    Host Integration Server 2000 for bridging to data and applications on legacy systems;
    Internet Security and Acceleration Server 2000 for secure, fast Internet connectivity;
    Mobile Information 2001 Server to enable application support by mobile devices like cell phones;
    SharePoint Portal Server 2001 to find, share, and publish business information; and
    SQL Server(TM) 2000 to store, retrieve, and analyze structured XML data.


    Tools

    Description:
    Visual Studio .NET and the Microsoft .NET Framework supply a complete solution for developers to build, deploy, and run XML Web services. They maximize the performance, reliability, and security of XML Web services.

    Visual Studio .NET is the next generation of Microsoft's popular multi-language development tool, built especially for .NET. Visual Studio .NET helps developers quickly build XML Web services and applications that scale easily, using the language of their choice. Visual Studio.NET advances the high-productivity programming languages Visual Basic®, which includes new object oriented programming features; Visual C++®, which advances Windows development and enables you to build .NET applications; and C#, which brings RAD to the C and C++ developer.

    The .NET Framework is a high-productivity, standards-based, multi-language application execution environment that handles essential plumbing chores and eases deployment. It provides an application execution environment that manages memory, addresses versioning issues, and improves the reliability, scalability, and security of your application. The .NET Framework consists of several parts, including the Common Language Runtime, a rich set of class libraries for building XML Web services, and ASP .NET.



    Now you can mod this however you want, but hopefully this will improve peoples understanding of what .NET is and it will help the discussion here at Slashdot!


  • Well...

    My understanding of an XML web service is a page (a service of sorts) that can be accessed via http or https and accepts an XML document. The service then parses the document or whatever needs to be done. Processes the information and then returns an XML document to the client. This can be useful in many applications, especially when a database is located on a remote server.

    I do think that Microsoft is excited about the easy integration between .NET and Passport, but I don't believe for a second that they think it is the central point of .NET.

    I'm not sure why you wouldn't be able to implement .NET without passport. Currently I'm using a site that uses form authentication over https, and I'm having no problems. I'm using ASP.NET programmed in Visual Basic (although it is just as easy to implement in C#) with SQL Server 2000 as a backend. Hope this helps!

  • by Karma Sucks ( 127136 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @09:03AM (#2183981)
    Could it be because Ximian is causing a lot of hype over vaporware? Could it be because Ximian is trying to get other Open Source developers to assist it in wasting time in its goal of finding the holy grail? Could it be because Ximian is more talk than action? Could it be because Ximian is being detrimental to GNOME, if not KDE?

    How *much* do we have to read about Mono, a project that only exists in name and hype? If Mono is so good, shut up and show us the code. Instead Mono is nothing but a publicity stunt.

  • They want .NET compatibility. If they don't support C#, that's not .NET compatibility - they will make it impossible to use their work for a development platform under the .NET system.
    ---
  • still, not supporting C# lessens their chances of having .NET based developers moving to Mono. It's like trying to get windows users to move to command-line Linux.
    ---
  • Exactly. Those idiots at Ximian should be putting their efforts into Kaffe, which is way out of date and doesn't support half of what Java has to offer. Perhaps it's a vision of Mono-things to come? I'll tell you why they don't: Miguel is just too damn stupid.

    They could have worked with Sun to integrate some of the .NET ideas that Java lacked. If I were Sun I'd switch focus to KDE.
  • IMO, .NET is the means to the end of Passport and Hailstorm! .NET is Microsoft's way of trying to get Java off the server side so it will have more oppurtunity to own authentication services. Microsoft isn't an Open Source programmer .NET is not just scratching an itch, there is some far reaching plan. That's the way business work, or at least should.

    Just ask yourself this question: If .NET really mattered to Microsoft, would they be helping Free Software implementations and submitting things standards bodies? My answer would be "Hell no!" By supporting .NET you will be supporting Passport and Hailstorm.
  • What's wrong? Passport and Hailstorm will be built on .NET, and therefore Microsoft needs .NET as far reaching as possible. What do you think the point of .NET is? Microsoft's kind gesture to free us from the tyranny of Java?

    Nothing I said was anti-Microsoft, however, your attempt at being fair and open-minded only leads you to naive conclusions.
  • There just is no link between .NET and Passport. Again, I say this because I have written applications in it for a year and have never seen Passport.

    I said very clearly that Passport and Hailstorm will be built on .NET, not that it equaled .NET or was a part of .NET as you seem to imply. Regardless, that IS the link between them which everyone but you seems to be discussing.

    dought very much Microsoft is going to come into my building, change the code and "make it" do Passport

    This is nonsense and I never implied any such thing.

    I say that you can do .NET forever without ever seeing Passport

    I never said you couldn't, all I said was there will are consequences in supporting .NET, as there are with supporting any technology. I can't give you the "scientific" evidence you want, because that's nonsense. Speculation isn't, IN MY OPINION, a bad thing, you clearly like speculating on my familiarity with .NET.
  • I think passport+hailsotrm are harbingers of doom and they must die before they can gain strength. Because Microsoft apparently has no qualms about breaking the law, perhaps its enemies should consider doing the same, but in a strategic way.

    I'm picturing it like this: the world wakes up and sees the credit card numbers, addresses and ID numbers from passport users plastered on a major hacked web site (A+ if it's microsoft's). THEN--all of these unfortunate early adopters start receiving credit card bills for internet porn subscriptions, international phone calls and maybe an X10 camera. Crackers thus far have been very kind with the information they gain, but this kindness has been used by the corporations to brush off security breaches and say "see, no one got hurt so all is well." Maybe if people do get hurt and have to spend hours writing petitions to their credit company to be reimbursed, passport-style authentication will be so smeared with FUD that everyone will want out.

    I'm not trying to condone illegal acts here; I'm just observing that when these things happen (it's hard to imagine they wouldn't) any assosiation with .net might be the kiss of death.

  • They are not really helping them at all, meaning offering help in the form of code, money or manpower. All Microsoft have done and will do is provide clarifications about the spec they have submitted for standarisation. They would probably do this for any company requesting such clarifications because failure to do so could hinder the standarisation process.
  • > How *much* do we have to read about Mono, a
    > project that only exists in name and hype? If
    > Mono is so good, shut up and show us the code.

    Chill dude, if you bothered looking at the go-mono website you see that there already is code available. (http://www.go-mono.net/download.html)

  • by Ur@eus ( 148802 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @04:57AM (#2183991) Homepage
    > Windows has a lot of interesting and already
    > implemented technology in
    > OLE/COM/DCOM/whatever - but that doesn't mean
    > that we should blindly follow in their
    > footsteps.

    No, but it doesn't mean we should automatically decide that everything Microsoft does it useless for us either. Unlike what some people seem to think judging by the way they argue here, is that we have some sort of power in the desktop market currently. This is bullshit, M$ still controls well over 90% of the desktop market and if we are to take them on we have to do what we always done on the server side, implement interoperability. Samba is a much used example, but lets also look Apache for instance which has support for Frontpage extensions and ASP.

    Ximian wants GNOME to become a serious contender to M$ in the desktop arena, and they are smart enough to realise that sitting around the fire like a gang of old Amiga enthusiasts dreaming about the comeback of Amiga and its rise to prominence is not the way to do it.

  • The major problems are:

    People might just not care: In a poll to US citizens a couple of decades ago, it was found that most people did not care about the rights they were given by the Bill of Rights, which lead to a number of laws to be passed in the US that eliminated most of the rights people had.

    This point is very important. It is a major blind spot that a large portion of the population just wants to be comfortable, and actually likes the simple games of a stable job in servitude to large corporations, etc. Without knowing it, alot of folks like comfortable slavery.

    (If you're happy and you know it clink your chains ... )

    This can drive they people with a more independant streak batty

    The industry will move way too slow: Microsoft's implementation is out in the open now: it is being deployed, and soon it will be insinuated to many, many users. The industry needs to get together soon if they care about this issue. By the time the industry reacts, it might be too late.

    Unfortunately the two problems are interelated. The industry is led too often by the same people who lead their lives of quiet servitude.

  • Here are some possible reasons why Microsoft helping Ximian on Mono:

    Petreley theory - Microsoft will wait till Mono gets entrenched and then pull the plug on the it with introduction to non-interoperable Passport and Hailstorm. Since the code is portable, Mono users will have to buy Windows Server.

    Waste time - Open Source programmer working on Mono isn't working on GNOME, Linux or other useful stuff that can threaten Microsoft.

    Kill Ximian & FUD - Microsoft knows that Mono will be a very large project. By draining resources, they can kill off Ximian. Microsft can use the failure of Ximian as an FUD example to say how open source is bad for business.

    Marketing - Microsft's marketing department can say things like ".NET is 'open architecture' and 'cross platform'". The kicker is that they get this marketing slogan for free.

    More marketing - Microsoft knows that .NET on Windows will run faster than Mono. Reason is that they tune their NT kernel to run .NET faster by making it part of the kernel. You and I know that this is bad idea and will never happen on linux. In the end, they can say "Linux is terrible OS. Look at the .NET benchmark and you'll see .NET will run on Windows faster".

    They kinda had to - Microsoft basically had two options when Ximian started Mono. Yes we'll help you and no we won't help you. The latter can get them in trouble with the law so they chose the former.

    Waste more time - Everyone who is reading and writing /. article isn't writing code at the moment. Microsoft knows majority of /. readers are open source advocates. :)
  • OK, I will bite on this one!

    I use J2EE every day, and it is a great infrastructure built on open standards. It would be great if Sun made its implementation of Java GPL or BSD, but there is an alternative:

    The GNU gcj compiler keeps getting better; with version 3.0, inner classes are supported, and I think that it will not be too long until Open Source J2EE implementations like JBoss (http://www.jboss.org) will work with GNU gcj and the CLASSPATH project.

    If you really want a GPL alterntive to .Net, it seems like putting effort into getting JBoss running with GNU gcj and CLASSPATH is a way better alternative.

    -- Mark Watson -- Open Source and Content at http://www.markwatson.com

  • Please go back and read what I said, I think we could end up agreeing!

    There is NOTHING in Mono that deals with Passport and Hailstorm. Sheesh! If you'd actually bothered to read the information floating around, you would have realised that the Mono project does not require Passport or Hailstorm to be of use to developers.

    Yup, agreed. I never said there was.!!!

    So you can write .NET-style web applications and authenticate against a distributed dotGNU server set without having to round trip anywhere near a MS-authentication server.

    Yup, I said that!

    Choice is a good thing.

    Oh, yup, yup, it is!

    But, like you pointed out, it's hard for non-aware users to know about choice when everyone's forcing Hailstorm and Passport down their necks.

    So, I think we agree, except you still fail to address my point about the way MS will leverage wide acceptance of .NET/etc to give them a stranglehold on the identity market!!

    Duncan Cragg
    ------------------
  • by Duncan Cragg ( 209425 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @03:25AM (#2183996)
    I believe that Microsoft has behaved criminally, has stifled competition." Friedman said, "I think we are calling Microsoft's bluff here. They are saying that .NET is an open system... We're going to implement an open version of it, and see how they react.

    With rubbing of the hands and insanely glaring eyes, is how.

    So this is about:

    .NET technologies including C#

    Passport and Hailstorm

    Mono is saying .NET/C# technologies are great for us hackers to copy. We can even get MS to agree and help us!

    Mono is saying, we don't care about the second bit: Passport and Hailstorm. We can even do our own, super-groovy, hacker's version!

    The problem that I and many others have been trying to point out to people is that MS' strategy is indeed to 'open up' the technologies and platforms - because, like in the case of Windows, it buys leverage and dominance on the layer above.

    With the Windows platform, that layer above was Office and everyone developing software for their OS. With .NET, that's... Hailstorm and Passport.

    As more and more CTOs and dull technical managers buy into the rapidly-spreading .NET platform (whether MS or open source), and more and more CEOs and dull government departments buy into the easy-easy Hailstorm community, it will be as impossible to do anything in your daily personal life without Passport/Hailstorm as it is now impossible to do anything in daily business life without Office.

    So now do you get it??? It's your bluff that's being called, pal! And it's considerably more scary to have MS own your identity than simply owning your business desktop!!


    ------------------

  • Personally, it's of zero concern to me how politically correct Ximian's work is. (I'm skeptical that it's the best use of their resources and surprised that the free software world hasn't learned yet how counterproductive it is to overhype software that's not close to done, but those are entirely different matters.) But since I've been reading lots of stuff like this, I thought I'd point out some details.

    If Ximian makes a .NET compatible implementation but doesn't require you to pay money, they are evil.
    But if KDE implements ActiveX in Konqueror, it's allright.

    Some developers came up with a way to use WINE to use ActiveX in Konqueror. To me, at least, that seems hardly the same as the Gnome project leader flying around the country talking about how .NET is the greatest thing since transistors, and his company sinking a ton of effort into reimplementing much of it.

    If TheKompany makes commercial, closed source software, it's allright.

    Where do people get this idea that Gnome and KDE have to be mirror oposites? The Kompany is in no way comparable to Ximian; they make some KDE based apps. If anything, they're comparable to the companies that are going to use GTK for commercial apps -- you know, the ones that GTK zealots are always saying guarantee an LGPL library's superiority over a GPL one?

    Anyway, like I said, I don't care whether Ximian uses a MS technology or not. (As though KDE and Gnome aren't both total clones of the Windows desktop already....) But I can't help but think all these folks shouting, "But what about KDE and ActiveX!?!" seem awfully defensive about a project they claim to love.

    Unsettling MOTD at my ISP.

  • i've been trying to find out what kind of money is involved. i mean, is microsoft going to allocate funds to ximian in their help for ximians support of .NET? maybe there's a lot of money involved, so miguel is forced by his investors to take this route... is miguel is caught in the middle of his investors and his peers?

    ximian isn't exactly generating a lot of revenue and they've spent millions. how do we know that miguel is just trying to make the best of things to keep ximian going? for all we know, ximian investors might be giving ximian an ultimatum to acccept microsofts offer or die?

    btw, this is all pure speculation....
  • by bmj ( 230572 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @05:48AM (#2183999) Homepage

    n JAVA, and J2EE, sun has produced a great "plumbing" mechanism for distributed software. the problem is that they haven't developed the frills around the plumbing (somethign like .NET). i believe they expected the community to use their platform to do such a thing. have we failed them?

    i think you're right on. ms has also made it easy for a company to implement their solution as well. while the tools exist for j2ee, they just aren't as well known, so it's just easier for a cto/is manager to implement the well-known ms solution. it may not be the specific product that's well-known (.net), but, as you pointed out, the decision-makers are familiar with other ms products.

    it's strange that more os hackers haven't embraced j2ee as the *open source* solution to .net. while sun certainly isn't as open as we'd all like with the java platform, there's no reason an open source competitor (NOT implementation) of .net can't be created....

  • The point is that to be a contender in the contender in the corporate desktop market, it requires the ability to rapidly develop and change internal business applications. This is the market that OLE/COM/MTS is designed for. Of course some of these are often abused, but they exist for market reasons.

    I think that it is good to offer an alternative to MS in these areas. For these reasons, I think that MONO is necessary.

    Sig: Tell all your friends NOT to download the Advanced Ebook Processor:

  • Personally, I think a lot of people have been giving Passport and Hailstorm too much credit. These webservices essentially add very little value to most applications, websites, and other webservices.

    These technologies don't provide nearly the functionality or the vision that Windows and Office provided to establish Microsoft as a monopoly.

    Remember, Office and Windows were a big deal in the early 90's as it allowed many of us to network offices, printers, databases and user friendly applications running on commidity hardware. The functionality that these two suites provided were considerable remarkable giving what was available before.

    What does Passport and Hailstorm do to get everybody jump on the bandwagon? Provide authenication services and store your contacts on an MS server?

    1. A lot of people don't need these services and don't feel compelled to use them. (Over time it will change)
    2. Any company can build thier own Passport and Hailstorm clones. I would be surprised if a lot of companies don't provide thier own Hailstorm like services like Lotus, Act, Yahoo, AOL and other company who want to retain thier large user base.
    3. Websites can use zero or 10 of these authenication services if they so elect.

    If anything, I see webservices becoming a commodity, which is what Microsoft is gambling on in the first place. They've spent the last 4-5 years developing a platform which is aimed to compete against Java, and the angle Microsoft has been touting is that .NET is RAD for the server (webservices, web apps, etc.)

    My prediction, webservices are going to become commidities, especially authenication and personal information management services.
  • by imipak ( 254310 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @06:08AM (#2184004) Journal
    >>Secondly, it means we are forced into Microsoft's vision of the future


    >No it doesn't. It means we have another choice.
    Er... how do you work that out? Seems to me that if (1) Microsoft come up with some new scheme for 0wning the net ^W^W^W empowering customers... and then (2) some well-respected and prominent Free software groups begin a project to engineer a Free version of it... then (3) our choice is limited to which implementation of Microsoft's vision to use.

    Chuck, could you expand on your previous assertion, please?
    --

  • by baptiste ( 256004 ) <(su.etsitpab) (ta) (ekim)> on Monday July 30, 2001 @03:14AM (#2184005) Homepage Journal
    I'm a happy Ximian user and OSS advocate - there aren't any conflicts for me and I chuckle at the ire that Ximian can sometimes cause.

    This is great stuff and I think it really puts Miguel's motives down in a clear manner. I think we should all thank them for even trying - I was amazed after all the anti Hailstorm and .NET stuff that's been posted, how folks reacted negatively to Ximian tryin gto start MOno because they were working with Microsoft.

    Yes, they might get crushed, but again, they might just glean enough info that they can develop a working alternative without being sucked in. Lets give Ximian credit - they are OSS developers after all and I expect any 'agreement' Microsoft tried to get them sucked into would be picked apart with a fine tooth comb before it was signed to be sure they didn't back themselves into a corner.

    Sure, right now Mono is only the .NET side of things - it doesn't deal with Passport. But you can bet that other folks are already working on it - Seems like a sweet deal to me. With Ximian working to develop Mono, more resources are available to work on Passport alternatives - seems like a good thing to me.

    So lets not trash Ximian and Miguel for trying - at least they are - more power to them!

  • by tb3 ( 313150 ) on Monday July 30, 2001 @04:57AM (#2184010) Homepage
    I agree with you about Java and J2EE; I work with them every day. I think the problem with Sun is that they are primarily a server and server software company, so they don't grok the end user experience. Microsoft started out building end-user tools, so they carry this bias into the development and server arena, making the tools look easier (than they should look) to use.
  • Any company can build thier own Passport and Hailstorm clones

    I saw an article a couple of months ago (I don't remember where). It pointed out that the genius behind Microsoft's plans with Passport and Hailstorm involved controlling the schema of the data. Sure, anyone can reimplement the software behind these services. However, each industry will standardize on Microsoft-written schemas relating to their communications and authentication needs.

    The clever part is, Microsoft will copyright those schemas. They can't be cloned legally, so you're still stuck with MS control. MS knows that almost nobody is going to write and test a service twice with different schemas just to interoperate with some second-tier implementations. At the end of they day, they're still in the driver's seat.

  • Again, as one person pointed out here 85% of the posters here on .NET know nothing about .NET. Mono understands the difference between .NET and HailStorm/Passport. When people write about the evil .NET/passport thing, they really mean Passport/HailStorm only. .NET is a completly free-standing open development environment for developing Internet and non-INternet apps. As such it is a rich development environment with Web Services, rich class libraries, language interoperability coupled with resource managment, SOAP services and WebForms - a rich browser independent way to create great looking web applications. This is goodness and Mono deserves our support to make sure that Microsoft delivers on its "open" message - they have given the CLI, CTS and CLR over to ECMA. Now they need to follow through on their promise to open process. And we have implemented lots if .NET projects over the last year and not a single one of them has anything to do with Passport/HailStorm. Passport is an SRO authentication. Insome cases its useful. I have one logon for the dozens of passwords I used to have for Microsoft sites. But I am worried about Passport beyond Microsoft and so should others. But Mono and O'Riely haven't turned. There are some good ideas in .NET and as a user of both platforms I would love to see the rich developer platform on both of my platforms. HailStorm/Passport only comes into play with e-commerce sites and only if you pick it. By staying just with the development tools and environment, that's not a possibility.

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