According to Redmond Developer News, the beta of Mono 2.0 will be available for download Friday March 14. Mono is an open source implementation of the .Net CLR and libraries and runs on many platforms, including OSX, Windows, and Linux.
I am a little mystified as to why a developer would target Mono if they need to run on Windows, but then I have always been a little puzzled with certain aspects of the Open Source movement. If the CLR is free for me to use in terms of costs to me or my customers, and available on pretty much every windows installation out there, then that is free enough for me.
Now targeting other operating systems with Mono is a different matter all together and is where I see Mono as a useful and quite interesting tool.
I will be honest. I have not following the progress of Mono very closely at all. When I saw the announcement of the pending beta availability I went to the Mono site and read through their blog. I was shocked at how much they have working on other operating systems. I have listened to podcasts with Miguel de Icaza when he talked about the relatively small size of the core Mono dev team so this makes their accomplishments nothing short of astonishing in my view. Here is a short list of stuff they have working for mac developers:
- They already have Mono running on the iPhone.
- ObjC# bindings to provide access to Objective-C APIs from Mono
- Cocoa# has been developed to provide cocoa bindings.
I would imagine that Silverlight will help out some with Mono adoption since the team is also making that available on Linux via the Moonlight project.