“Real-world” Linux Conference…

So, I decided to attend the “Real-World Linux” conference in Toronto this week. I was kind of hoping to learn some stuff.

The attendence was , not heavy. The usual suspects were all there IBM, SUN, HP being the noteables. There was not any great content on application development at all, which was too bad for me. What a let down.

Interesting that IBM is promoting open source. I wonder if  IBM is behind linux to drive :

a) Server (hardware) sales, and b) IBM Global Services revenue.

The only session I attended that was remotely refreshing and positive was the session by Erik Dasque from Novell on Mono. He told it straight up, the clean room implementation of the the CLS and C# from the ECMA standards (yes, these are STANDARDS), and compared and contrasted Java and C#/CLS in a very factual way (note: JAVA is NOT a standard, it is a proprietary technology that needs to be licensed from Sun Microsystems.)


Comments (6)
  1. Brutus says:

    Uh, Java is a standard. You, me, anyone can download the complete specifications and implement them. Sun even explicity includes a grant of rights to use items in the Java covered by patents.

    While C# has been published as a standard, the rest of the DotNet platform has not. Microsoft includes no patent grants. In fact, Microsoft has rumbled about future action in the intellectual property arena.

  2. Mono Rocks! says:

    I think the difference is between specifications and standards. What standards body, and what is the standard?

    C# has been published as a standard, as well as the Common Language Infrastructure(CLI) that allows anyone (you, me, anyone) to implement on any platform, anywhere, anytime.

    See the Mono project for a complete implementation of the C# and CLS standards. ISO/IEC 23270 (C#), ISO/IEC 23271 (CLI) and ISO/IEC 23272 (CLI TR).

    And I think the second paragraph you are looking at the difference between "open source" and standards. Correct, the Microsoft implementation of CLI and C# (called .NET), is not open source, and as such contains intellectual property. But open source projects based on the specs are not threatened by Microsoft’s intellectual property rights on the .NET implementation.

    And, if Sun decided to change anything with their specification, is there a standards body to ratify it, or is it unilateral? I think that points to the difference.

  3. Brutus says:

    I mentioned specifically the availability of complete specifications for Java the language and VM and Java the platform; and the inclusion of a patent rights grant with the specifications.

    DotNet has neither complete specifications nor patent grants. While I appreciate your statement about "open source projects based on the specs are not threatened by Microsoft’s intellectual property rights" — I honestly don’t believe it. What it would take to get me to believe it is a written statement granting rights to implement patented technologies. Please excuse me for not trusting Microsoft.

    I did not mention "open source" at all.

    If Microsoft decided to change anything in DotNet, is there a standards body to ratify it, or is it unilateral?

  4. Mono Rocks! says:

    Actually, you say you don’t trust Microsoft, but you trust Sun.

    I feel a little more secure using something from a standards body (ECMA/ISO) than something from an application vendor (SUN). Java and the VM belong to them, and they have the right to litigate against anyone who they feel breaks their licensing agreements.

    If Microsoft decides they want to change something in .NET, they are free to do so (.NET is an implementation of CLI on the Windows platform).

    I’m not so cynical about Microsoft. They’ve done good for the industry in the past, and tend not to over-litigate (except to defend themselves from companies like Sun over Java implementations— wait a sec…)

  5. .NET is an implementation of CLI on the Windows platform. C# is an standard (ECMA/ISO). Java belongs to Sun.

  6. LT says:

    For myself I said never again. The last J project I was on the app was broken when we upgraded our JVM on the server to the new version, then there were the problems when our client switched from oracle to bea half way throught the project and our TA’s wiz bang caching implementation failed on the new servers because it used proprietory caching features of the oracle app server. That is just the highlights. After I walked away from that disaster I started programming dotNet and have never looked back.

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