Google Gears and Silverlight

by Miguel de Icaza

Nice post on using Silverlight with Google Gears.

Posted on 13 Jul 2007

ASP.NET AJAX in Mono/Grasshopper

by Miguel de Icaza

Noam Lampert posted an update on the ongoing efforts at Mainsoft to implement the ASP.NET AJAX APIs for Grasshopper and Mono.

Mono's implementation of ASP.NET AJAX is limited to the server components. Luckily the client-side library is effectively open source under the terms of the Ms-PL license (same one used by IronPython, DLR; it lacks the OSI stamp of approval, but it is effectively a FLOSS license).

A bunch of AJAX-enabled ASP.NET components are also being developed in an open source way. You can check out Microsoft's sampler here.

In other news, Mainsoft has also launched, an aggregator for all-things Grasshopper, .NET on Java and Mono. Check it out!

Posted on 13 Jul 2007

Go Michael Moore Go!

by Miguel de Icaza

Magnificent interview with Michael Moore on CNN.

That was one solid intervention.

Stay tuned until the end, when Lou Dobbs has a chance to show his rethorical skills.

Posted on 10 Jul 2007

Life Imitates The Onion

by Miguel de Icaza

Life Imitates The Onion, as seen on

Posted on 09 Jul 2007

Font Rasterization -- from Maxim

by Miguel de Icaza

Maxim ---of AntiGrain fame--- has written a fantastic analysis of the various text rendering systems used in Windows, MacOS and Linux and proposes some solutions to this problem: Texts Rasterization Exposures -- An attempt to improve text rasterization algorithms using only publicly available information:

Joel Spolsky in his article "Font smoothing, anti-aliasing, and sub-pixel rendering" [1] compares Microsoft and Apple ways of text rendering and explains why windows people don't like Safari. Text in Safari looks too blurry and that must be why. I want to go further and sum up my experience and observations about it. I'm not an expert in digital typography, but I "have something to say". At least, some ideas may be useful for the GNU/Linux community.

Posted on 08 Jul 2007

Runtime Sizes

by Miguel de Icaza

Mirco Bauer maintains the Mono packages for Debian Linux. Today a minimal install of Mono is quite small.

He has posted some details here.

A minimal Mono installation (just the basic runtime) is 2.4M for download and takes 7M on disk.


What was surprising is that a minimal Python install is larger (3.9M download, 13.4M intalled).

Not surprising is that Sun's Java (JRE) is 34.5M and uses 95.2M on disk. But this is just because its an all-or-nothing installation due to licensing. A full Mono installation is 27M and takes up 78M on disk (this is with symbols stripped, with symbols that goes to 32.7M for download and 107M after unpacking).

Mono is somewhere in between the JRE and the JDK. Our "complete" package includes the runtime, plus our development kit but does not include documentation, that is separate.

If we pull in Gnome#, Gtk# and the Mono documentation browser and XSP (with all of their deps) it goes up to 84M for download and 250M installed.

Mirco has some stats for the various other open source Java VMs as well.

Silverlight/Moonlight size

Just looking at the native libraries that we will have to ship with Moonlight/Silverlight I estimate that we will need about 7 megs of disk space plus any other native libraries that we might end up linking statically (Cairo most likely) plus the Dynamic Language Runtime + compilers when they are ready (another 3-4 megs).

Compressed it will likely come down to 4-5 megs, so our Silverlight implementation for Linux will likely be in the 8M-9M range for the download.


We know that some products like OTee's Unity ship a stripped down version of Mono for the generated games they produce.

A friend mentioned that Cisco's DVD documentation ships with Mono and Mono's ASP.NET server (Sadly, Windows-only). Can anyone confirm this?

Posted on 08 Jul 2007

Basic Tuning of Mono's ASP.NET

by Miguel de Icaza

Someone was asking the other day about raw PHP vs ASP.NET performance. I do not remember on which forum this was, but I found on JuanCri's blog a couple of simple tips that can improve the performance of your apps:

  • Disable ViewState on forms that do not require it (put EnableViewState="False"). You can set this on a per-control basis for a page, or for all the pages.
  • Use the output cache on pages that load data from databases.. From JuanCri's blog, set the <% @OutputCache Duration="60" VaryByParam="None" %>.

Posted on 08 Jul 2007

The Pentagon Papers: How They Were Released

by Miguel de Icaza

Mike Gravel tells the story on how he released the Pentagon Papers and his involvement in stopping the draft. He is a great story teller. His speech is also quite funny.

The entire episode from Democracy Now is available here. The Real Player stream is here.

I loved the last bit about how they managed to publish the papers. When they were running out of sources and it seemed like MIT Press would not publish it, Beacon Press decided to publish them: they had the money and were willing to go ahead with it.

The Gravel bit (alone) here:

Posted on 04 Jul 2007

Mono Meets Facebook

by Miguel de Icaza

R Tyler describes how you can integrate Mono applications in Facebook.

His solution uses Mono's ASP.NET, Mono's Facebook-Sharp and he creates a sample application: Weather#.

Weather# combines Mono, with SOAP webservices to retrieve the weather information and render information specific to your profile.

Check out his tutorial. It covers how to use MonoDevelop to create ASP.NET applications.

Posted on 04 Jul 2007

Strong Words

by Miguel de Icaza

Someone uses better, accurate, and stronger words to succinctly describe Bush's presidential pardon from yesterday.

Posted on 03 Jul 2007

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