Java and Mono (was Re: Managing multiple computers at home)

ross at ross at
Sun Mar 26 23:07:38 MST 2006

On Sun, 26 Mar 2006, "Andrew Jorgensen" wrote:
> On 3/26/06, ross at <ross at> wrote:
>> Probably the biggest is that it's a GUI app, as opposed to Unison's
>> command-line interface. That's just a matter of taste.
> That's funny because you're point a) about what Unison lacks sounded a
> lot like UI.  I have to agree though that if iFolder can't just run in
> the background without a GUI for a head then it's not worth much in
> your situation.

I don't know if iFolder can run headless (easily), it very well could. And
UI does not necessarily mean GUI--a command-line way of doing (a) would be 
much nicer (in my opinion, of course) than a GUI way of the same.

> Besides.  C# has everything you always loved about Java and none of
> the stuff you always hated.  (I know, that's an exageration).

I'm actually grateful for the competition--I think that Java has improved 
immensely since (and at least partly because of) C#. There are some things 
I think Java can do to still improve, but none of them require major 
overhauls of the language.

> I'm kind of hoping Java will die off in the Desktop world.  I'm fine
> with it being used in the multi-tier enterprise application world, it
> does great there.

That's funny--I actually see Java as only now becoming really viable in 
the Desktop world. I'm curious as to why you see Mono/GTK# as being more 
viable on the desktop than, say, Java/GTK. (I personally think that Swing 
is actually a solid contender, especially if it's integrated with the 
system the way Apple's managed to, for instance--a Java/Swing app can be 
made to look nearly indistinguishable from a native app on OS X. And 
maybe SWT will even be usable in a few years' time!)

Most of the problems I see with Java (both Java on the web as well as Java 
on the desktop) are more with how people use the language than with any 
shortcomings in the language itself. But again, we've already had our 
language flamewar for the month ...

> Not at all likely that there will be legal problems:

I'm not so concerned with the thought that there will be legal problems so 
much as the thought that people might think there will be legal problems. 
I mean, SCO was able to do a tiny bit of damage with a very small amount 
of funds and absolutely no case--imagine what Microsoft could do given the 
chance 10 years down the road.

But I'm not even really worried about /that/ so much as I'm concerned 
about the fact that Microsoft controls the language specification and can 
steer the platform any direction it likes. Sure, it's possible to fork if 
they did something like that, but then why have Mono in the first place 
instead of extending Java or creating a new system from scratch? By the 
time we get to the point where we realize it's requisite to fork, it might 
be terribly inconvenient to do so. But this issue has been hashed out 
again and again by people smarter than I, so I don't really have anything 
else to say on that.

> Gosh, me too.  I probably shouldn't even send this... oh well "too late."

Well, we can promise to have a good-natured discussion and simply ignore 
anyone who attempts to steer this into a rant, eh? :-)

 	~ Ross

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