Google Summer of Code: Database Support in MonoDevelop

by Miguel de Icaza

Over the summer Ben Motmans rewrote the database support in MonoDevelop. Working with Ben was a pleasure.

Part of the challenge was that I personally had no idea what it is that people do with these database UIs. My contact with databases is so bad that about once a year I google up the instructions to setup Postgres again, and figure out my login, password and connection string followed up by extensive cut-and-pasting of "CREATE" statements until I have something that roughly can store a few values.

His work has now been integrated in the First MonoDevelop Beta release.

Query Result and Database Explorer

Alter Table

Creating a SQLite connection.

This Database Add-in replaces the old Mono.Query add-in, and will hopefully continue to improve to have a central location for all of your database needs.

Posted on 01 Oct 2007


Media you can't trust

by Miguel de Icaza

Dave Winer on Media you can't trust. Reflections on Ahmadinejad and its coverage.

Dave also recommends "All the Shah's Men" a book that I recommended earlier this year.

Posted on 26 Sep 2007


Evo Morales on the Daily Show

by Miguel de Icaza

Tonight, Jon Stewart had Evo Morales, the president of Bolivia on his show and interviewed him.

I learned in the interview that Evo Morales made two promises during his campaign: to nationalize the energy sector and to do "Reforma Agraria" (sorry, forgot the translation).

He achieved both within eight months in office.

In the energy sector, he said that the Bolivian government used to receive 300 million dollars for its energy and today it receives 2,000 million dollars.

Posted on 26 Sep 2007


Remix Boston

by Miguel de Icaza

In addition to my participation on the keynote at Remix07 with Brad Abrams, I will be hosting a session on Silverlight on Linux which will be heavily oriented towards questions and answers.

Now, I have been living in Boston for seven years, and I have no idea that there was a Hyatt Regency in town.

Hope to see you there!

Posted on 25 Sep 2007


LugRadio Interview

by Miguel de Icaza

Last week I was interviewed by the LugRadio crew. The interview is now available.

The last question I think was the most interesting, but I did not have time to actually finish answering it.

The crew has a nice gallery of pictures for their Rock-band look. But a picture at Starbucks?

Posted on 24 Sep 2007


Mono-less Moonlight

by Miguel de Icaza

For the sake of minimizing our valgrind time, dividing and conquering the task of spotting leaks, and to reduce the surface that must be audited for security for Silverlight, Rolf has commited support that removes the Mono dependency from Moonlight.

Moonlight 1.0 will not require Mono anymore (Moonlight 1.1, that tracks Silverlight 1.1 will).

In the meantime the team has been busy performance tuning video playback for Moonlight. As it turns out there is no one-size-fits all optimization for video on Linux as different video cards are accelerated differently.

When we were describing one of our hacks to improve performance to Kevin Gallo he quoted a friend of his on graphics performance, and it went more or less like this "Graphics performance work is basically a collection of hacks".

It inspired confidence in some of the tricks that we have been doing to reduce the work that Moonlight does.

My friend Chris Toshok is looking for a college to attend to learn a few new tricks. He has a few constraints, but if you can help him find a place in Boston, we might be able to bring him back to the Norteast.

Posted on 24 Sep 2007


Bullet-proof Gandhi

by Miguel de Icaza

From Scott Adam's Sorry I confused You post where explains his satiric post from the day before:

Still, the bulk of my sympathies are with whatever group suffers the most, regardless of how much of the problem is their own damned fault. To feel otherwise would be inhuman. Sometimes it feels as if the Palestinians are only one Gandhi away from fixing their problems. But he’d need to be bulletproof.

Posted on 23 Sep 2007


Generics Improvements

by Miguel de Icaza

Mark, the hacker behind Mono's CoreCLR Security implementation has committed to SVN the support for generic code sharing.

Generic code sharing allows the same native code generated by the JIT to be reused for more than one generic instantiation. This can be done when the JIT can ensure that the code generated for the given method would be exactly the same.

This optimization currently needs to be enabled with -O=gshared

Update: Mark blogged some details and clarifications

Posted on 21 Sep 2007


Weekend Movies

by Miguel de Icaza

Posted on 21 Sep 2007


Apple locked ecosystem and the EU

by Miguel de Icaza

Ian Williams mailed me to point out an article this morning at the BBC about Apple and its practices.

The article builds on the EU ruling against Microsoft and points out:

Apple has spent much time trying to ensure that anyone who buys an iPod is completely locked in to an Apple-centred world in which they use iTunes, buy from the iTunes Music Store, purchase only Apple-certified iPod accessories and, ideally, abandon their plans to migrate from Windows XP to Vista and instead purchase a shiny new iMac.

It is very nice to see the BBC coverage go into the depth of the issues involved in the closed interfaces (the now read-only database; the streaming limited to Apple products by means of using encryption to lock the competition out; the new cable add-ons; the locking-out of Linux jukebox software; and the ringtones fiasco):

It is hard to see what justification there can be for these various measures other than an attempt to lock customers in and keep competitors out.

I've asked Apple why it is doing this, but it has remained characteristically silent, preferring to invest its time and energy in the iPhone's UK launch.

[...]

But its business practices do not stand up to scrutiny, and when it comes to music downloads it is just as bad as Microsoft on servers, putting its time and energy into creating barriers to competition instead of letting its developers and designers concentrate on doing great stuff.

If Apple was serious about building a music industry around downloads and digital devices then it would open up its devices and interfaces to allow greater innovation and greater competition.

It would have faith in its own products to compete in this larger ecosystem instead of trying to lock everyone in with tactics that resemble those of IBM in the days of the mainframe.

I wrote a presentation this morning using Microsoft's PowerPoint, but displayed it using Apple's Keynote. Apple can sell Keynote because it took PowerPoint apart and figured out how the files work.

Had Apple been unable to do so, or found that every time it figured out what was happening Microsoft changed the format, it would have complained loudly.

Yet this is exactly the technique it is using against third party jukeboxes. And it is time it stopped.

Read the whole piece.

The BBC article missed the bit where purchasing DRM music also locks you into a particular platform (Apple could license the DRM to allow users to re-encode the songs into another DRM if necessary).

So the EU has teeth, lets make sure that they do not end up wrapped around Apple marketing and they act decisively to ensure interoperability and an open ecosystem.

Posted on 20 Sep 2007


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