Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Red Hat Settles Patent Case 76

darthcamaro writes "Red Hat has settled another patent case with patent holding firm Acacia. This time the patent is US Patent #6,163,776, 'System and method for exchanging data and commands between an object oriented system and relational system.' While it's great that Red Hat has ended this particular patent threat, it's not yet clear how they've settled this case. The last time Red Hat tangled with Acacia they won in an Texas jury trial. 'Red Hat routinely addresses attempts to impede the innovative forces of open source via allegations of patent infringement,' Red Hat said in a statement. 'We can confirm that Red Hat, Inc and Software Tree LLC have settled patent litigation that was pending in federal court in the Eastern District of Texas.'"

White House Correspondent Tweets His Heart Attack 77

Tommy Christopher, who writes for, has reporting in his blood, so much so that he livetweeted every part of his recent heart attack. "I gotta be me. Livetweeting my heart attack. Beat that!" and "This is not like the movies. Most deadpan heart attack evar. Still hurts even after the morphine," were among his updates as he was rushed to the hospital. Christopher is now in stable condition after recovering from emergency surgery.
Open Source

Open Source Developer Knighted 101

unixfan writes "Georg Greve, developer of Open Document Format and active FOSS developer, has received a knighthood in Germany for his work. From the article: 'Some weeks ago I received news that the embassy in Berne had unsuccessfully been trying to contact me under FSFE's old office address in Zurich. This was a bit odd and unexpected. So you can probably understand my surprise to be told by the embassy upon contacting them that on 18 December 2009 I had been awarded the Cross of Merit on ribbon (Verdienstkreuz am Bande) by the Federal Republic of Germany. As you might expect, my first reaction was one of disbelief. I was, in fact, rather shaken. You could also say shocked. Quick Wikipedia research revealed this to be part of the orders of knighthood, making this a Knight's Cross.'"

Ubuntu Will Switch To Base-10 File Size Units In Future Release 984

CyberDragon777 writes "Ubuntu's future 10.10 operating system is going to make a small, but contentious change to how file sizes are represented. Like most other operating systems using binary prefixes, Ubuntu currently represents 1 kB (kilobyte) as 1024 bytes (base-2). But starting with 10.10, a switch to SI prefixes (base-10) will denote 1 kB as 1000 bytes, 1 MB as 1000 kB, 1 GB as 1000 MB, and so on."

Comment Re:Inflamatory headling superceeds mundane content (Score 5, Informative) 268

We have announced that our upcoming Mono release (2.8) will default to 4.0:

For the first time in Mono's history our C# compiler and its supporting engine and core libraries were done before Microsoft released the product, we were usually one to two years behind. This time we are some five months ahead of time:

There are still a handful of loose ends here and there, but luckily, nothing major.

Comment Re:O rly. (Score 3, Insightful) 425

.NET was released in July of 2000.

And Google uses a mix of languages and tools: different features require different tools and all that. Had there been no legal problems, it would have been a no-brainer to use .NET over other technologies.

It did not have to be Mono, it could have been a third party .NET implementaion.

Comment Re:Wah wah wah (Score 4, Interesting) 425

You are mixing two different things.

Microsoft claims that they have patents had a chilling effect on Mono adoption.

That does not mean that I do not stand 100% by our position in the Mono project regarding patents. To begin with, we think it is a bullshit argument, since everything you use is infringing on someone else's patents (Microsoft included).

Microsoft like any other corporation will do a cost/benefit analysis of suing someone over patents. So far the kernel has been a juicier target than Mono has.

PlayStation (Games)

BioShock 2's First DLC Already On Disc 466

An anonymous reader writes with this quote from 1Up: "Trouble is brewing in Rapture. The recently released Sinclair Solutions multiplayer pack for BioShock 2 is facing upset players over the revelation that the content is already on the disc, and the $5 premium is an unlock code. It started when users on the 2K Forums noticed that the content is incredibly small: 24KB on the PC, 103KB on the PlayStation 3, and 108KB on the Xbox 360. 2K Games responded with a post explaining that the decision was made in order to keep the player base intact, without splitting it between the haves and have-nots."

Comment Re:Eternal game of catch-up (Score 4, Informative) 443

As the other poster said, the fact that we do not have 1:1 parity has never been a problem.

Some other technologies that are subsets and are wildly successful:

* Android's Java is not a 1:1 mapping to Java either, and that has not prevented it from being successful.
* iPhoneOS is not MacOS 1:1, and yet, it is incredibly successful.
* Chrome the browser, does not have every feature of Firefox, that did not stop it either.
* JBoss is a subset of the full J2EE stack, and for years it has been wildly successful.
* Linux for years was not even POSIX compliant, and yet, many of us jumped on it, and it became wildly successful.

In Mono we implement what makes sense, and what people are actually using in day to day applications, we do this using metrics that we obtain from our Mono Migration Analysis that helps us identify which APIs are used, by how many applications and we have collected this data from some 10,000 applications:

Call this the data-driven prioritization of development.

Mono was born as a technology to bring the best that .NET had to offer to Linux, this was initially the c# language and the core libraries. As time went by, Mono evolved in two directions:

(a) Organica growth: as the Mono community grew, we identify missing features, we envisioned better ways of doing something and created tools, APIs, languages and extensions that mattered to us. In this category you can find things like Gtk#, Taglib#, Cairo#, Cecil, Mono.Options, Mono.Security, Mono.Data, Mono.Math, Mono.Management, Mono's C# REPL, Mono's SIMD extensions, Mono's large array support. Mono's dynamic JIT extensions, Mono's static compiler and much more.

For instance, today, more than 350 applications on the AppStore and 10 of the top 100 apps in there are built using Mono.

(b) Better compatibility with .NET: this is a simpler process than coming up with our own APIs. The .NET APIs are documented, there are thousands of applications to test the implementation against, the community is fed directly from the largest middleware stack in the world, so it made sense for us to implement these pieces.

Is it correct that we do not have a full implementation of .NET, there are a few reasons for this, now with numerals:

(i) Some APIs are Windows specific, and makes no sense to bring to Linux, in particular things like System.Management which is a thin wrapper around WMI. Our advise: replace that code with Linux and MacOS specific code and use one or the other at runtime.

(ii) Some APIs are too larger for us to take with our current community. This includes things like WPF and Workflow. If someone steps up, we will embrace them, but until that happens, we are focused on improving the other areas that have more users and that we have more requests to implement. Additionally, the WPF "lite" is a killer stack (also known as Silverlight).

(iii) Focus, we do not want to spread ourselves too thin.

As for .NET 4.0: we are not too far from having the core be 4.0 compliant, it is a nice upgrade to the solid 3.5 release. For instance, our C# compiler is already a full C# 4.0 compiler, and we already provide features that Microsoft wont offer until 5.0 (embeddable, reusable compiler, see C# REPL).

Moonlight is behind Silverlight, but I am not driven by despair, I am driven by the world of possibility. If I were driven by despair, I would not have written a single line of code.

If Silverlight never succeeds, then who cares how behind Moonlight is. But if Silverlight succeeds, and Linux users want to access that content, but the feature is either broken, not implemented or missing in Moonlight, those users will be in a position to contribute the code, and everyone wins.

Comment Removing the GPL code. (Score 5, Informative) 443

We removed the GPL code in MonoDevelop for a couple of reasons:

(a) to allow it to become a platform that third-party plugin and add-in developers can target.
(b) to allow us to consume open source code that would otherwise conflict with the GPL (MS-PL licensed code, Apache licensed code, and original BSD licensed code).

Notice that (a) is the norm for Eclipse and Visual Studio, and that the ecosystem of third party plugins relies on this, both Eclipse and Visual Studio would be severely limited if they limited the plugins to be all GPL licensed. As I explained on the blog post, there are current users that need to run their non-GPL code inside the IDE.

We want more third party developers to target MonoDevelop, and we want these third parties to consider MonoDevelop a platform that they can target without forcing a license on them. Similar to how the Linux operating system can run code licensed under any license.

The second reason is just a practical one. In the .NET open source ecosystem there are plenty of libraries and tools available under the MS-PL, Old and New BSD and Apache 2 licenses and we want to be in a position to use those libraries without rewriting it. We already do, and it has saved us a lot of time.

Slashdot Top Deals

Promising costs nothing, it's the delivering that kills you.