Microsoft Open to Mono Effort

 
 
By Timothy Dyck  |  Posted 2001-07-30 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

When the Free Software Foundation announced its .Net development-platform-on-Unix project, called Mono, earlier this month, there were a whole lot of question marks about how Microsoft would let its ideas and code be used by competitors.

When the Free Software Foundation announced its .Net development-platform-on-Unix project, called Mono, earlier this month, there were a whole lot of question marks about how Microsoft would let its ideas and code be used by competitors.

Microsoft's openness to efforts such as Mono is a key issue because Microsoft's own Unix version of .Net is only for academic and personal use, according to its licensing terms. If commercial companies are going to be able to use C# or .Net classes on non-Windows platforms, Mono will be needed.

I was encouraged to hear on the record from Microsoft that licensing issues should not be a holdup for Mono. "We said, royalty-free, you can do whatever you need to do to implement this spec," said Microsoft's David Stutz, group program manager for the Shared Source CLI Implementation, in Redmond, Wash. Specifically, referring to Mono, Stutz continued, "They will have the same access to that IP as everyone else has. It should be smooth sailing."

Moreover, Stutz said Microsoft will be liberal in how others can learn from Microsoft's shared-source .Net platform, called the Common Language Infrastructure, or CLI.

"We are very serious about wanting to see lots of different CLI implementations, commercial implementations. People who want to implement commercial versions of the CLI should be able to use [the shared source code] as a guide," Stutz said. "While we're not saying go and use this source code, you will not be tainted by going and looking at this source code."

 
 
 
 
Timothy Dyck is a Senior Analyst with eWEEK Labs. He has been testing and reviewing application server, database and middleware products and technologies for eWEEK since 1996. Prior to joining eWEEK, he worked at the LAN and WAN network operations center for a large telecommunications firm, in operating systems and development tools technical marketing for a large software company and in the IT department at a government agency. He has an honors bachelors degree of mathematics in computer science from the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, and a masters of arts degree in journalism from the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario, Canada.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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