I finally installed Mono (C#). My reason why and some thoughts on Mono in general.
I’ve resisted installing Mono for a long time. The thought of .NET and C# has had me shivering, but finally an application made me install it. The application I wanted is Tomboy. A little application that sits in the Gnome panel and lets you take notes and create links between them. I just got it installed and I’m liking it already.
Before I switched offices, my desktop was littered with little post-it notes with arrows from one to another or logical grouping telling me which belonged together. Before my move I wrote them down as a list, 2.5 pages worth. And that was only for work. I’m hoping that Tomboy will fill that spot and let me make the notes on my computer and leave it at that. One more excuse less to use a pen. As if my handwriting would be getting any better.
But I still feel like I’ve sold my soul, or something similar. Or then I’ll begin to appreciate what it’s all about. Maybe hacking Tomboy to support the notes that my Nokia 6820 allows me to take will help in understanding Mono. Or not.
I’m still skeptical about the need for yet another development platform. Currently the amount of dependencies that even a small application comes with is enormous (of course, that is why they are small). I know that I’ve felt that C/C++ have come to the end of their road when it comes to developing normal desktop applications. They learning curve needed to create applications with GTK etc. is steep. An OO approach is more logical for GUIs and Mono (and C#) is a step towards that.
I understand the need to develop something like Mono and an open implementation of C# to compete with Microsoft and maybe help software deployment on Linux. But I am still surprised on how eagerly many application developers have jumped onto the Mono bandwagon. When time permits I will have to take a careful look at developing applications with Mono to see for myself what the benefits are. Call me finally interested instead of just skeptical.