The Mono Mystery That Wasn't: Page 2

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In other words, de Icaza has not changed his opinions. As he makes clear, he is talking from the viewpoint of a supporter -- a critical one, but a supporter all the same, and one who is concerned that the opinions about .NET that Worthington gathers are informed ones.

"I was thinking what had gone wrong in the last eight or ten years," de Icaza told me in a brief interview. "And I think that Microsoft really missed a big opportunity. .NET would be in a lot more places if there had been no problems with Mono."

De Icaza confirms that nothing has changed for him when he concludes his blog by saying, "I am still a fan of .NET, and we are going to continue working to bring Mono everywhere where we think we could improve developer's experience . . . . Just like everyone that complains about Sun's tight control over the Java development process, I have my own regarding Microsoft's development process for .NET. But that is just business as usual. The best C# and .NET days are ahead of us. "

The rumors? De Icaza dismisses them as "a storm in a teacup."

The only part of the rumors that is even remotely true is that, all things considered, de Icaza would have preferred that his comments had been made in a different context. He tells me that he does not blame Worthington, whose purpose was to write about the history of Mono with a variety of viewpoints. According to de Icaza, Worthington approached him in the hopes of more substantial comments than were likely to be forthcoming from Microsoft's public relations.

Still, "Basically, I'm trying to get Microsoft to open source more stuff. I'd rather have had a private session than a public lambasting, which this became," de Icaza admits." His concern is that Mono and .NET might have both been better served if he had made his comments more diplomatically. For de Icaza, the validity of his comments is apparently not in question -- just their timing and method of delivery.

Move Along -- Nothing to See Here

These rumors could have been avoided had anyone thought to contact the people involved. Instead, the transmitters of the rumors chose to rely on imagination and prejudice instead. The idea that de Icaza had either recanted his views or else had caused trouble for himself by speaking too freely to a journalist was apparently too appealing for many to resist.

What nobody seems to have considered is that, regardless of your opinion of de Icaza, Mono, or .NET, the free and open source software (FOSS) community is poorly served by such rumors.

Thanks to the Internet and its own cohesion, the FOSS community excels at communication. However, in this instance, that ability was used irresponsibly, and a lot of people's time was wasted by disinformation.

ALSO SEE: Let's Settle the Mono Debate

AND: The GNU/Linux Desktop: Nine Myths


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Tags: open source, .NET, Linux, FOSS, Mono


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