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Mono Weekly News (January 22, 2003)

Jan 27, 2003, 01:00 (2 Talkback[s])

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The voice of the Mono Community.

Table of contents

  • 1. Headlines
    • 1.1 Mono 0.19 released
    • 1.2 Gtk# 0.7 released
    • 1.3 Mono 0.18 released
    • 1.4 DB2 System.Data client contributed
    • 1.5 MacOS X support on the runtime
    • 1.6 IKVM (a Java VM for .NET) runs with Mono
    • 1.7 Gsirc is making great process
    • 1.8 Mono Debugger released!
  • 2. Meet the team. This week Atsushi Enomoto
  • 3. CVS Activity
  • 4. Mailing List Activity

1.1 Mono 0.19 released

Yes!, this week we are having two Mono releases. The main reasons for it is the 0.19 release were a lot of improvement in the availability. Now Mono is packaged for the most important Linux distributions. You can also get it through its own Red Carpet channel. Better Remoting support (we now have the BinaryFormatter thanks to Lluis), System.Web.Mobile to support Mobile browsing among others.

1.2 Gtk# 0.7 released

The Gtk# team has provided us with a new release too. The changes since 0.6 are: the tutorial samples and monkeyguide docs spun off into separate project. Build System fixes/enhancements, Metadata parameter fixes, GStreamer fixes, Threading enhancements, GType registration framework, libglade field binding enhancements, Gdk.Drawable and Pango.Layout customizations, and Parser bugfixing.

1.3 Mono 0.18 released

The Mono team is proud to release Mono 0.18, with plenty of bug fixes and improvements. If you are a happy 0.17 user, this release is a happiness extension release. Many bugs in the runtime, class libraries and C# compiler have been fixed. Some pills: we have many improvements to the Mono VB.NET compiler. Authentication system in ASP.NET. And the remoting infrastructure has got a big boost from Lluis in this release.

1.4 DB2 System.Data client contributed

Christopher Bockner has contributed a DB2 System.Data client. We have a very complete range of data providers.

1.5 MacOS X support on the runtime

MacOS X support on the runtime has been integrated into the distribution, and MCS works with it. Running most tests works too. Anyone with a MacOSX system is welcome to try the code, report bugs and other issues and, hopefully, send patches:-)

1.6 IKVM (a Java VM for .NET) runs with Mono

Zoltan has managed to get IKVM (a Java VM for .NET) to run with Mono. The HelloWorld.class runs with the Mono runtime.

1.7 Gsirc is making great progress

Gsirc is Alp's lightweight and flexible IRC client for the .NET framework. It makes use of Gtk# and is known to run on Linux and on Windows. It features a handy full-screen mode (Flotilla) which is great for tracking dozens of IRC channels on a dedicated X terminal or display. You can see it in action here and get it at Gsirc's site.

1.8 Mono Debugger released!

The Mono Debugger 0.2.0 "Boston" has been released. After almost half a year of hacking, we finally have a first public release of the Mono Debugger :-). The source code is available at this address. This release depends on Mono 0.19 so if you are using an older version, update!.

2. Meet the team. This week Atsushi Enomoto

The Mono team is integrated by contributors all over the world that are working really hard to get this project going further. In this section we will be meeting this people so we can know more about them and what they are doing.

This week we are proud to present Atsushi Enomoto. Atsushi is a newcomer to the Free Software comunity. He is a software engineer working at a certain venture company for about 2 or 3 years. Sometimes he uses dotnet with his job. The company he works for has many XML business, but as for him, he has never met few scene to handle XML. Once upon a time, he enjoyed MIDI programming when not working. He also likes to translate XML related materials into Japanese. His recent concern is about cyberlaw, like what professor Lawrence Lessig teaches since he was a law student studying criminal law and intellectual property laws. Let's see what are his interests in Mono and how is he contributing to make the project achieve its goals.

Interview with Atsushi Enomoto

MWN: You are new to the Free Software community. How do you feel about it?. Are you enjoying it?.

Atsushi Enomoto: I'm quite enjoying participating. I'm too new to distinguish whether it is because of "Free Software" development from simply hobby development but I think it is precious experience to know how open software development goes.
MWN: Why did you come to Mono?. What are the reasons that moved you to choose it as the first OpenSource project to contribute to?.

Atshushi Enomoto: Well... I had been interested in Mono as the alternative dotnet project. I hadn't ever used Mono (and still I haven't wrote any application!), but subscribed to mono-list as a read-only member. The first time I got involved in this project was when Miguel wanted a little patch for XML library. Then I was interested in XML and looked into that code and found that it was not written in fact. Then I wrote first, very easy code and sent to him. It was too incomplete and had very entry-level mistake. Miguel advised me to write test. I was in trouble with test, and sent him I may go to #mono and ask. I solved it myself, but after a few days, Miguel sent me "feel free to come anytime," so then I thought I had better (heh, I really thought "had better") go and see him to thank. After that I received another help-wanted mail from duncan. I wrote buggy code ;) again and sent him. Then Miguel asked me if I could write more missing bits, then I started to get more involved into this project. But I hadn't thought that means "as a maintainer"! I was really surprised when I found that I was written about me as a "maintainer", though it is no problem.
MWN: So as one of the mono developers in the System.XML namespaces (one of the basis parts of .net), what do you think about the implementation you are doing?. What are the main benefits you think Mono is bringing to Linux and the UNIX world with it?

Atsushi Enomoto: Before I got involved in this, I had thought the important part such as XML must be more complete and ready-to-use, because there are similar packages such as libxml, libxslt and soup. In fact, it is not such stage. Then I think it should go ahead. You must surprise if I say that I hadn't ever used dotnet XML library so deeply, and moreover, I hadn't ever used libxml/libxslt. (I always use Java parser such as xerces, or crimson. I'm not kind of linux developer.). There are many features to finish. DTD (even though it is legacy), XSLT, XML Schema, XML (de)serialization... I think I cannot do everything by myself (I think I'm no more than basic-skilled programmer in the world).
About benefits of Mono, I think this project can provide alternatives of Microsoft. I don't think that mono's value is simply because it can run on unix, because MS really provide Rotor. I think mono is valuable because it is "free software." As for Microsoft, they certainly cannot provide some of the software we need, such that collaborates with GPLed software (it is only for example). It is social reason, but not laughable. It is important that dotnet's useful feature such as ASP.NET can be used in platform other than Windows. XML is important again is this context ... xml based web services.
MWN: Do you think the way .NET handles XML and the related technologies is as good as it promises?. What can you tell us about it, as a Java programer?.

Atshushi Enomoto: Well, first to say, my Java experience is not so deep. I'm really enter-level developer. As for So-called Web Services, Microsoft is certainly playing one of the leader's role, with many "standards" such as XML Schema, WS-I and even dotnet itself. But I think it is not because they are with standards. I'm suspicious of those effect of "standards" beleived that "because it is standard." I think technology is used because it is good (I think that Miguel is of good sense because he knows "what is valuable" and what is not). So I think that if we use web services, then we should always think "it is extending freedom" or not. To tell the truth, I'm so new to mono, and to System.Xml. So I only know about core feature of System.Xml namespace. Many programs such as monodoc, ADO.NET, XML signature, or other libraries uses this feature. I think this package itself is, however, far more complete. Formerly, there were great implementor of this namespace, but now we need more help. I think that many developers (like me) can participate to this feature. XML is not so difficult. I can't say anything about other tools, but I think it is important to get compatible with other implementations, such as DotGNU and of course, Microsoft FCL. Such effort makes ourselves "easy to use."
MWN: Is there anything left you may want to say about which classes or tools you find prioritary to implement so people reading this could contribute?

Atsushi Enomoto: Humm... the easiest way is to write applications. It is OK to try existing programs ...heh, but even for myself I didn't yet ;) .I want anyone who help development of this package such as XSLT, but there is no loadmap, so contributors (even for myself) must be confused. As said below, I didn't know that I was regarded one of the maintainers. Then I'll write some of the draft of the plan.
MWN: Thanks Atsushi. We are happy to see how developers from the Microsoft Windows environment come to Linux and to Mono and contribute to this project. Thanks for your time and your work.

3. CVS Activity

This has been a busy week. Here are the results. (*) Actually I am using the number of commits as measure, I will try to get more accurate aproximations in the future. (Starting Jan 10th, till Jan 20th)

Authors: Total 28
Author Commits
Ajay Kumar Dwivedi 1
Alejandro Sanchez 65
Alp Toker 1
Atsushi Enomoto 7
Christopher Bockner 3
Daniel Lopez 6
Daniel Morgan 10
Dietmar Maurer 14
Duncan Mak 36
Gaurav Vaish 12
Gonzalo Paniagua 43
Jackson Harper 5
Jeroen Janssen 4
Johannes Roith 84
Jonathan Pryor 29
Lluis Sanchez 5
Marco Ridoni 4
Martin Baulig 218
Miguel de Icaza 42
Mike Kestner 1
Nick Drochak 9
Paolo Molaro 14
Patrik Torstensson 3
Peter Williams 7
Rafael Teixeira 5
Rodrigo Moya 11
Sebastien Pouliot 18
Ville Palo 12
Zoltan Varga 6
Modules Commits
mono 43
mono/doc 15
mono/jit 14
mcs/mcs 12
mcs/class 118
mcs/class/corlib 34
mcs/class/System.Web 25
debugger 211
gtk-sharp 37
mbas 5
monodoc 41
mod_mono 8
xsp 7

4. Mailing List Activity

This has been a quite week in the Mono list. You can see the scrollbar in your Evolution mailbox without forcing your eyes!. The main points:
  • Daniel Morgan has had very busy days contributing a lot to the list. Some of the useful information he provided was about SQL#. We now know that: SQL# For GTK# will be moved to its own cvs module sqlsharpgtk, some of the data binding functionality could be moved to a base class so other GTK Widgets can take advantage of data binding. Please read for more info.
  • A little bit of discussion about the array access performance.
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