Nat in Boston

by Miguel de Icaza

Nat just landed, and we were touring the office when we ran into a messy room.

Nat: what happened here?

me: Oh, that's the xbox room.

me: but the xbox is not here now.

Nat: so what do you call this now? "The room"?

Posted on 18 Dec 2007

Mono/Winforms jobs: follow up

by Miguel de Icaza

Calvin who is way better organized than I am posted the details about the job positions at Novell working on UIA for Linux.

In Calvin's blog there is a link to Michael's details about the work that they will be doing.

You can still send me your information, I will likely help the guys doing the interview, but the actual HR-esque process that organized people at Novell use is available.

Again, these are not a jobs in the Mono team, but in the desktop team although plenty of the code that you will write will end up in the standard Mono distribution.

Posted on 17 Dec 2007

We are hiring: Accessibility Work

by Miguel de Icaza

We are doing some work to make Windows.Forms and Moonlight accessible. The desktop team is hiring people for the Cambridge office (USA) that want to work on accessibility technologies, free software, C#, Mono and the UI Automation framework.

If you are interested, drop me an email with the subject line "AccessibilityJob" and we will reply in the next couple of weeks with one of those exercise interviews that we do.

Although a lot of the work will end up in Mono, this is part of an effort from the desktop team, so technically you will be reporting into a different organization than the Mono team.

Posted on 14 Dec 2007

Hopeless Romantic

by Miguel de Icaza

The Dennis Kucinich campaign is doing a fund drive this Saturday. You can sign up here or contribute directly by clicking on "Contribute: Online" at the top.

Reddit-poll after reddit-poll has shown that am most closely aligned with Kucinich than any other candidate for president of the US. Read the summary of his positions:

More details: here.

Posted on 14 Dec 2007

Diabetes Experimental Treament

by Miguel de Icaza

My dear friend Chris Toshok recently discovered that he had developed diabetes.

Tomorrow he is going to be admitted into an experimental treatment program for it. He will undergo four days of treatment.

The day that he told us about the experimental program, I had just seen this:

Good luck Chris!

Posted on 12 Dec 2007

Essential Chomsky

by Miguel de Icaza

Amazon reports that a new Chomsky book is on the pipeline. Essential Chomsky. Hope it is as awesome as some of the collected essays from Gore Vidal.

Am myself a fan of his Understanding Power book. Maybe as much as a fan of it, as a fan of the various Gore Vidal books that they sell on airports, the pocket book editions (Imperial America, Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace).

Posted on 12 Dec 2007

Wii Remotes

by Miguel de Icaza

Guy Lunardi just emailed me a link to a very clever hack from Johnny Chung Lee at CMU.

How to use the Wii remote to capture finger movement. A brilliant hack.

The Wiimote library is released under the MS-PL, and I think this requires a port to Linux. I have added this wish-item to the Google Highly Open Participation project for Mono.

Posted on 12 Dec 2007

Wanted: Game Console

by Miguel de Icaza

Having missed on games for the past 15 years last year I finally got myself a Wii. Other than Wii Sports and now Metroid 3, I have yet to find anything worth playing.

Nat recommended a Nintendo DS, and you guys had some great suggestions back in September. So far the only one I liked was Metroid Hunters (the control is so similar to the Wii, that its a pleasure to play) and am still making my way through the Sudoku's on the DS.

I tried Halo3 but with its up/down/left/right-cursor-like technology to aim at enemies, it feels almost like am playing with a keyboard in 1988. After using the Wii for point-and-shoot, anything short of that for point-and-shoot feels unnatural. Like when the dentist stuffs your mouth with junk and still tries to have a conversation with you or trying to use a bendy straw for snorkeling.

So am looking at expanding my Console Empire at home and purchasing either a PS3 or an XBox360. Aaron insists that I should not get the PS3 because Blue Ray this-and-that which I do not particularly care about.

Aaron also claims that eventually you get used to up/down/left/right. I guess I will have to live with that, as the Wii is barely getting any games worth playing. And as a rule, I do not play anything that glorifies war, but am OK shooting at strange looking aliens.

So am stuck, and willing to learn to use those unnatural controls on the PS3 and the XBox if there is something worth playing.

Dear readers, what should I get, PS3 or XBox? And which games are worth playing? I do not care about movies on demand, or whatever other TV features they are trying to sell me, I already have Tivo HD and Tivo with DVD playback and recording.

You can either email me or post here your suggestions.

Posted on 08 Dec 2007

Embedded, its not part of foreplay, but it is still very important.

by Miguel de Icaza

I still hate the classification of anything that describes itself as enterprise (and I work for a company slogans are sprinkled with enterprise).

Yesterday someone emailed me:

It was not the point of your blog today but I'd be interested in hearing about company's usage of Mono in embedded systems. Because of our affinity for C#/.NET we originally looked at WinCE for the next generation of one of our product platforms. It didn't go very well (we were still at WinCE 5 so I can't say how 6 is). Ironically, using Mono on a Linux Embedded system seems to give you more .NET / C# then you get with CF on WinCE.

So I reached out to a friend that has raved about Mono in the past, and I wanted to get a quotable answer from him (I asked him if I could quote one of his emails from last year). He did give me a quote that I can send around to folks, but his company will not publicly endorse his quote.

Which is exactly the problem that I was describing yesterday. Anyways, the quote is:

C# and mono is a great way to develop embedded products. If you separate the heavy lifting from the application logic properly, the performance impact of C# is not significant and makes application development much faster and less buggy.

I've been doing embedded development with C# for over 5 years and mono is way better than .NetCF due to superior performance and binary compatibility with MSFT's desktop .Net.

One thing that is particularly handy is that you can prototype on a desktop PC and just drop the managed binaries on the device and they just work - no need to recompile.

So anyways, you are going to have to trust me that I did not make up that quote myself.

And today we delivered a gift (or in Don Box parlance, a "small bouquet of flowers") for those embedded people that use ARM processors.

Update: The author of the quote comments:

When you mention embedded development with mono, it might be worth mentioning that there is some startup cost for the JIT, depending on the CPU speed and how much managed code there is, and that the memory footprint with mono will be larger than it would be without. For most devices this may not be an issue, but it is something a device developer should keep in mind. Hopefully the AOT support will mitigate the startup costs.

Posted on 07 Dec 2007

Pre-compilation support for ARM processors

by Miguel de Icaza

Zoltan just checked-in support for ahead-of-time (AOT) compilation in Mono for ARM processors.

We are looking for volunteers to test the support and post their findings to In particular, we are hoping that this should further reduce startup time and memory usage on Maemo devices.

An old post of mine covers the basics of using it.

Posted on 07 Dec 2007

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