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New Version of SharpDevelop Released

Blogs of interest

SharpDevelop 2.2
SharpDevelop has released version 2.2. Version 2.2 is mostly a bug fix release, but also adds support for newer versions of Boo (0.7.8), NUnit(2.4.1) and Wix (2.0.5325), Cecil (0.5), additional templates have been added, and SharpDevelop Reports 2.2 are included while support for the old SharpDB Tools has been dropped.

SharpDevelop has a Web page (http://community.sharpdevelop.net/blogs/mattward/articles/VisualStudioExpressComparison.aspx) that compares SharpDevelop with the express editions of VisualStudio. The nice thing about this is that it was done by an engineer and not a marketing person, so it gives the real scoop, showing VisualStudio advantages the same as it does with SharpDevelop advantages.

Work continues on the next major release, codenamed "Montferrer," which will focus on .NET 3.x features, such as LINQ, WWF, and WPF.

Christophe Wille talked about SharpDevelop on .NET Rocks; you can hear the archive at www.dotnetrocks.com/default.aspx?showNum=245.

SharpOS
SharpOS is a new operating system written almost entirely in C#. Although it has hopes of becoming more, its main goal is to provide a learning experience for its developers, and to see how much of an operating system can be written using fully managed code. Currently it has enough of an ahead-of-time compiler and kernel to be at about the "Hello World" stage. You can read more about it and get involved at http://sharpos.org/ and http://sharpos.sourceforge.net/cgi-bin/trac.cgi.

Odds and Ends and Blogs
Mainsoft has released Service Pack 1 for Grasshopper, their software package that uses Mono to allow .NET code to run on a J2EE server. The service pack improves both compile and runtime performance, more documentation, better support for third-party Visual Studio add-ins, and some bug fixes. The home page for Grasshopper is at http://dev.mainsoft.com/Default.aspx?tabid=177. Check out their code blocks and sample apps at http://dev.mainsoft.com/Default.aspx?tabid=174.

Konstantin Triger, one of the Grasshopper team members, has blogged about unit testing ASP.NET at http://blog.mainsoft.com/blog/unit-testing-for-aspnet-on-mono/. It is interesting to note that at each commit to System.Web, 3,245 unit tests automatically run, and 25,774 unit tests run after each full build.

Roy Osherove, another member of the Grasshopper team, has blogged on the difficulties in maintaining interoperability between Java and .NET, and compares the approach the Grasshopper team uses (converting from one bytecode to another) with the wrapper approach used by CodeMesh (www.codemesh.com/). The blog can be read at http://blog.mainsoft.com/blog/codemesh-does-interop-with-net-and-java-too-how-do-we-compare/.

In another of Roy's blogs, he offers the nifty piece of code in Listing 1. To use it, create a new console application, add Using System.IO, and add the code in the listing in place of the empty Main procedure created by Visual Studio. As Roy says, run the program and just sit back and watch all the activity that goes on on your computer, even when you are not doing anything.

While following the links in these blogs, I ran across a booklet published by Microsoft on Java and .NET interoperability. It can be downloaded from http://download.microsoft.com/download/7/2/6/7269f183-639a-4e99-bd84-cc3e6515af86/PnP_J2EE_Interop_V1.pdf.

As this issue goes to press, Mono 1.2.5 is going through final testing before release. I will cover it in detail next month, but should it be available by the time you read this at www.mono-project.com/Downloads.

You can also track the progress of Moonlight, the Mono version of Silverlight, at http://primates.ximian.com/~miguel/silverpages/.

MojoPortal, a .NET-based Web site framework, has made several interim releases since I last mentioned it; you can get more info and the latest version at www.mojoportal.com/. MojoPortal supports both Microsoft and Mono with the exception that when compiled for Mono, the .NET 2.0 Web parts' function are disabled because they are still under development in Mono.

IKVM, the open source project that allows Java code to run under .NET, has received a big boost by integrating much of the OpenJDK code that Sun has made available (http://openjdk.java.net/).

NUnit has released version 2.4.2 (see www.nunit.org/).

Microsoft has released the first version of IronRuby under their (open source-friendly) permissive license www.iunknown.com/2007/07/a-first-look-at.html.

Finally, some information on open source hardware - www.makezine.com/blog/archive/2007/04/open_source_hardware_what.html.

Visual WebGui
While following the links in the above blogs, I also ran across Visual WebGui, an open source IDE that makes creating Web sites easy for those familiar with developing desktop applications; basically it allows you to create a Web site in the same manner as you would create a Winform application. It is described as an "On server, off-client AJAX framework." The home page is at www.visualwebgui.com/Home/tabid/36/Default.aspx. The project is sponsored by Gizmax, and their Web site has blogs, video, quick starts, and all the information you need to get up and running. I look forward to trying this out in the coming weeks.

More Stories By Dennis Hayes

Dennis Hayes is a programmer at Georgia Tech in Atlanta Georgia where he writes software for the Adult Cognition Lab in the Psychology Department. He has been involved with the Mono project for over six years, and has been writing the Monkey Business column for over five years.

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