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Attachmate Does the Right Thing For Mono 100

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the being-good-is-good dept.
mikejuk writes "Attachmate, who recently decided to dump the Mono development team, has done the right thing in allowing Miguel de Icaza's new company, Xamarin, a perpetual license to all the intellectual property of Mono, MonoTouch, Mono for Android and Mono for Visual Studio. This allows them to continue to develop and sell the products. Of course this income might just give them the time needed to support the software, which is a good thing, as Attachmate has also handed over the support for all existing customers to Xamarin."
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Attachmate Does the Right Thing For Mono

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  • by mswhippingboy (754599) on Monday July 18, 2011 @12:30PM (#36801012)

    Whether or not you think Mono has value, granting a perpetual license to it to someone who will do something with it was the right thing to do. Allowing a particular technology to be continued rather than just sitting on it because they have no use for it should be applauded. I only wish IBM had done this with OS/2 many years ago. Who knows what would have become of it.

    • like eComStation ?
      • eComStation is a "barely" warmed over (as in bugfixes only) release of OS/2 Warp 4 which IBM last shipped in 2001. Had IBM released the source code to someone who might actually continue development (even if not open-sourcing it) there's no telling what kind of OS it could have evolved into by now.

    • by s73v3r (963317)

      Agreed. So many of the posts above this are just troll posts about Mono being shitty, and while I don't hold it in the highest of esteem, I think it's very good that they decided to allow a group of people that was actually doing something with the IP to do it, rather than just sit on it, make them reinvent the wheel, and possibly sue them afterwards.

      • I think it's very good that they decided to allow a group of people that was actually doing something with the IP to do it, rather than just sit on it, make them reinvent the wheel, and possibly sue them afterwards.

        I agree entirely. However, there's a question that no-one seems to be asking: if Mono was as open, and as free of IP encumberances as Miguel has always maintained it is, then what IP did they need?

        And if Attachmate held IP that prevented Xamarin from developing the project further, what does

        • by cduffy (652)

          However, there's a question that no-one seems to be asking: if Mono was as open, and as free of IP encumberances as Miguel has always maintained it is, then what IP did they need?

          Copyrights?

          Not all incarnations of Mono are/were open source -- particularly, the mobile and embedded targets were, and remain, commercial.

    • by jellomizer (103300) on Monday July 18, 2011 @12:58PM (#36801256)

      I fear OS/2 was a failure for the desktop as soon as they did the Adds for OS/2 Warp. A bunch of people staring at a computer screen saying how cool it is then showing some funky color like they are on an acid trip. Most people at the time didn't know what an OS was they figured that once you turn on your PC you go to DOS prompt... then there were GUI enhancements like Windows 3.1. Earlier versions of OS/2 were the same way... seeming just a shell on top of DOS. So OS/2 Warp just an another expensive DOS Shell, that ran DOS Slower and all those newly available windows apps wouldn't all run at 100%.

      When Microsoft released Windows 95 at nearly the same time, they did what apple does now. Show the product, show them how to use it, make it seem so much easier then before and what the other guys do. So when people got windows 95 they knew what it was and what it was going to do.

      • by AvitarX (172628)

        Yeah, I agree about the adds.

        It was like, WTF, this sucks so bad they can't show you what's so amazing?

      • by mswhippingboy (754599) on Monday July 18, 2011 @01:05PM (#36801306)

        When Microsoft released Windows 95 at nearly the same time, they did what apple does now. Show the product, show them how to use it, make it seem so much easier then before and what the other guys do. So when people got windows 95 they knew what it was and what it was going to do.

        No, OS/2 was superior to Win95 in nearly every way at the time. The reason for OS/2 demise had little to nothing to do with technology, but a combination of the "somewhat questionable" tactics MS used to force PC vendors to pre-install Win95 on every box shipped, and the ineptness of IBM's marketing.

        • by thammoud (193905)

          No, OS/2 was superior to Win95 in nearly every way at the time.

          Not true. As much as I liked OS/2, it had that nasty single message queue problem that Win95 did not. IBM tried many kludges but they rarely worked.

          • Oh yes. The single message queue issue. On this point I concede your argument. This was the result of IBM's (shortsighted IMHO) determination to not break compatibility with legacy (especially 16-bit) applications. This issue could have been easily resolved, at the expense of breaking compatibility, but IBM refused to deal with it (another of IBM's blunders).

        • IBM's ineptitude indeed... I remember being perplexed, back in the day, seeing IBM machines bundled with Windows. "They have their own system, supposedly it is very good, so why won't they use it instead?"

        • Do you read before you quote and post?

          I stated nothing about OS/2 Technical Quality (I actually never used that OS thus I said nothing about quality, just the perception of the overall market), It was only about IBM failure in marketing.

          • Apologies. I did note after I posted that I should have left the "No" off the start of the post. My intent was not to refute your statement, but rather to augment it with comments about the technical arguments. I completely agree with your position as to the marketing aspect.
        • A major problem was that IBM insisted on 286 compatibility, which meant a 'back flip' between real and protected mode.
           

          • Yes, but IBM patented a solution to the problem (called "thunking" IIRC) that was actually pretty elegant. Because IBM had the patent, Win95 was never able to run protected mode applications.
    • by gatzke (2977)

      I thought I read OS2 was still going, being resold and supported by a third party licensed by IBM.

      I think it was these folks:
      http://www.ecomstation.com/ [ecomstation.com]

    • Whether or not you think Mono has value, granting a perpetual license to it to someone who will do something with it was the right thing to do.

      Just to clarify, this isn't a free perpetual license, it's a partnership. Attachmate is getting something in return, I presume a percentage of revenue.

      Not that there's anything wrong with that. But the headline makes it sound like Attachmate is doing this to be fair or nice. This is just business. But it does make perfect sense for everyone involved.

  • by MikeRT (947531) on Monday July 18, 2011 @12:31PM (#36801030) Homepage

    If Palm did this with BeOS back about 5-6 years ago. BeOS didn't really compete with them. It did, however, compete with their biggest contemporary competitor and one of their future competitors that they should have seen would soon be a major rival. Had Palm given Haiku developers the same deal with BeOS, it would have been as disruptive for Microsoft and Apple as if a little enemy state were to hit the US with a high altitude EMP on a weekday.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      They didn't do this because there was hope that BeOS could make money in the embedded / mobile market even though they lost the desktop market.

      • by Locutus (9039)
        if they "hoped" for it they sure didn't talk about it. From what I heard and saw, they used BeOS to pick at its bones and tried to get Garnet in shape as a good OS but it never happened. And then they kept changing the cradle and connector so that hardware vendors couldn't keep up with the changes and soon lots of software developers finally gave up as they kept screwing with the API's and what the Palm platform was supposed to be.

        If you were around back then, you too would understand why it's a joke when t
    • "...it would have been as disruptive for Microsoft and Apple as if a little enemy state were to hit the US with a high altitude EMP on a weekday."

      Interesting....analogy...I guess.
  • Xamarin? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Monday July 18, 2011 @12:35PM (#36801070)

    Why not just call it Ximian rev. 2.0?

    • Why not just call it Ximian rev. 2.0?

      Same reason Blackwater is now called Xe.

      • And Comcast is called Xfinity. Change your name to Xsomething and people will forget whatever you did before, apparently.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    "Xamarin’s Mono-based products enable .NET developers to use their existing code, libraries and tools (including Visual Studio*), as well as skills in .NET and the C# programming language" link [xamarin.com]

    is this the end of .NET? [i-programmer.info]

  • Good Will (Score:4, Interesting)

    by DeeEff (2370332) on Monday July 18, 2011 @01:13PM (#36801378)

    Not something you see often nowadays, what with patents and copyrights being thrown back and forth in endless litigation and cutthroat corporate espionage.

    That said, these guys are pretty awesome for doing that. In a way it lets us know they actually care about the improvement of the industry, even if they couldn't support Mono themselves. Round of applause ol' gents.

    • by Raenex (947668)

      Without being privy to the agreement, I wouldn't assume it was "good will". If anything, it's probably just a business agreement where Attachmate stands to benefit if Xamarin succeeds. If they really wanted to be "good will" about it, they would provide royalty-free licensing to everybody instead of just Xamarin.

  • Now Miguel can play with his pet project all by himself, so others won't have to tolerate him just because of his former association with their projects.

  • What's the point of writing portable code (that is the benefit of using Mono, right?) if I have to buy two seperate IDEs to actually make use of it?
    • by Ant P. (974313)

      No, Mono serves the same purpose as Wine - it's there as a stopgap while you transition away from Microsoft to real portable languages. dotNET is "portable" code in the same way writing for the Microsoft JVM is portable, except this time they can't be sued for pulling a 3-E's.

  • by girlintraining (1395911) on Monday July 18, 2011 @01:56PM (#36801778)
    I'm going to the special hell for this, but I misread the headline as "Attachment does the right thing for mono", and I thought to myself -- attachment is what causes mono. Well, that and kissing. Then I realized I was on slashdot, and nobody would get the joke...
  • Does anyone else find it really discouraging that someone doing the right thing is considered breaking news?
    *sigh*
    • by Kittenman (971447)
      I think it's news when Attachmate do the right thing. I use some of their stuff here at work, and they always strike me as being in it for the bucks (yeah, we all are - but most of us pretend) and employing staff that appear to be me as being, well, a little back from the forefront of the industry.
  • Xamarin supporting Attachmate's Mono stuff means a lot to me, as a developer. I work for a company that does a lot of Mono-based consulting. This is going to sound like advertising, but having Mono for Android and MonoTouch makes life as a mobile developer easy. For example, my coworkers have been working on an iPhone application for a client using MonoTouch, using MonoTouch.Dialog. The client wanted a dual launch with an Android app, and since we were using all Mono-based projects in an MVC pattern, all we

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