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Monkey Space 2012 Is Over

A few weeks back I had the opportunity to attend the MonkeySpace conference.

For all of you that missed it, I highly recommend planning on attending it next year.  If you did miss it, this year is not completely lost as the awesome folks over at Monkey Square are planning on making the videos of the sessions available at some future date.

I had a great time meeting some awesome people and attending some great sessions.  There are several really exciting technologies out there that are worth following discussed at the conference.

Here is a bit of a recap of some of the sessions that I attended.

First, The top secret keynote that Miguel De Icaza delivered.  The major topic was the release of Mono 3.0 and the future of the ecosystem.  Some of the really cool features of Mono 3.0 is full c# 5.0, System.Net.Http, TPL DataFlow, Code Contracts, entity framework, razor, asp.net mvc 4, F# 3.0, and 64bit support on OS X.  The 3.0 release is very exciting not to mention lots of ‘lameness’ will be going away with the new async stuff.  There are also improvements to sgen the new garbage collection system in Mono that should help improve performance.  Mono is seeing a lot of success in the gaming side of the market as well.  Some other areas that will receive focus are code analysis, bug finding, and profiling tools.  In the next year Xamarin expects to deliver new MonoTouch and Mono for Android versions based on 3.0.  Very exciting stuff!!!

Second, ServiceStack.  This was a very full session and I was lucky to find a spot to stand in at the back of the room.  Sadly this meant that I missed parts of this presentation, but definitely plan to look more seriously into it once I get the chance as a replacement for wcf.  Hopefully the video comes out sooner than later for this one!

Third, GitHub.  Phil Haack did a great job presenting on GitHub and the awesomeness that it is.  I had seen some of it before, but really like seeing the command line style interface that is built into the web interface in action.  He also did a demo of the API that is available and there were some really cool things in there.  I’m very interested in the possibility to integrate pull requests into some Continuous Integration system.  It would be cool to know right away if the pull request would break the build or not.

Fourth, Vernacular.  Aaron Bockover, now a Xamarin employee, was great enough to post his slides here.  If you are working on a project that is targeting multiple platforms and need it to support multiple locales then this is definitely a project you need to check out.  Very promising!

Fifth, Mobile Development with C#(book).  Greg Shackles is definitely someone to follow and watch in this market segment.  He has been doing some great work including writing a book about it.  If you are considering writing a mobile app that is targeting multiple platforms I definitely recommend picking up this book.

Sixth, Effective MonoDevelop.  Michael Hutchinson is an awesome developer that has contributed a great deal to the MonoDevelop project.  His blog has some great tips that makes using MonoDevelop even better.  It is definitely worth the read.

 

Apart from all of the sessions there was plenty of time to hang out with some rockstars in the Mono community.  It is always great to chat with them in person and get feedback on questions and problems.  I am definitely looking forward to next year’s conference!  Keep up the great work!

 

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F-Spot and its new home

As some of you might have noticed I’ve created a repo on GitHub for F-Spot under the mono umbrella – F-Spot on GitHub!

I have left the repository on git.gnome.org/f-spot and will try to sync up changes in master regularly. I’d like to thank the awesome GNOME project for hosting F-Spot and want to be clear that I have absolutely no plans of dropping GNOME support in F-Spot nor diminish F-Spot’s GNOME integration in the future. On the contrary, as the .NET bindings for the GNOME  3  platform are improving I expect to be working on further GNOME integration for F-Spot.

The goal in moving F-Spot over to GitHub is purely for the benefit of its development technically as well as to breath new life into the project through the wider GitHub community and feature set.  Github provides several really cool features, one of the features that I’m looking forward to taking advantages of is the pull request system.

Currently, contributors will typically clone a repository, create a patch that fixes some bug, file that bug in Bugzilla and attach the patch, which then sit and wait in the hope that the developers will notice the bug and accept the patch.  What seems to happen with projects, particularly F-Spot, is those bugs will sit there and bit rot.  Either someone will come alone, see the bug and possibly rebase the patch against git master or it’ll be forgotten until it’s no longer valid.  The pull request interface isn’t some silver bullet, but I see it making the process much simpler and much more discoverable for both patch contributors and maintainers alike.

With the GitHub system, it’s really simpler for any user to come along and fork F-Spot.  Once forked they can fix a bug and do a pull request.  At this point there is a nice list of pull requests or shame list (a list of all the patches I haven’t addressed yet!).  There are some other features such as issue tracking and a built-in wiki that comes with GitHub which I’m not sure if it will get used, but time will tell.

Another goal I have for the project is to port it over to OS X and Windows.  GitHub has a nice client for both platforms as well as conveying the idea that F-Spot is intended to be cross-platform application with GNOME support more clearly than being on GNOME’s git does.

I hope everyone will appreciate this new workflow and will enjoy the improvements that are to come in F-Spot.  I’m excited to continue development on F-Spot and look forward to the future of such an awesome photo management.