[Mono-osx] Is native look on OS X possible?

Duane Wandless duane at wandless.net
Wed Feb 11 09:09:26 EST 2009

Mono is not a Windows technology.  C# is a language started by Microsoft
that includes the WinForm library, which *that* library is tailored for
Windows.  C# is a language.  Mono is the compiler for that language on other
platforms.  And there are ports of the Windows centric UI WinForm library to
other platforms.  My opinion is thinking a WinForm app can be a good cross
platform app is flawed.

We had this (frustrating) debate internally a few months ago.  The biggest
mind set shift was people letting go of C# equals Windows.  It does not
unless you code it that way.  We have an excellent middle layer that serves
a Windows WinForms application as well as a ObjC/Interface Builder

The cost of writing the UI code twice is trivial when compared to the
benefit of having a truly native looking app on both platforms.  And if you
want you can easily call into the ObjC libraries from within a C#
application.  If you haven't look at MonoObjc.net.

Delphi Prism sounds interesting and warrants some investigation though.


On Wed, Feb 11, 2009 at 8:22 AM, Joanna Carter <
cocoasharp at carterconsulting.org.uk> wrote:

> Matt Emson a écrit :
> >> If you are a Mac user, I have to ask you why you are looking at, what
> >> is essentially, a Windows solution?
> >
> > Why is Mono on OS X a "Windows solution"? If one uses an Objective-C
> > bridge, no Windows specific code needs to come in to the equation.
> My point is that Mono is, essentially, a Windows technology that has
> been (superbly) adapted to work on other platforms.
> Unfortunately, the Mono frameworks include WinForms UI technology, which
> is far from cross-platform; it is firmly rooted in Windows for its
> appearance.
> Now, there is the MonoMate project, which allows the development of OS X
> apps in C#; but with the same limitation of having to use Interface
> Builder for the UI side of things.
> The only conclusion I can reach, at the minute, is that Mono is s uperb
> idea for developing apps for OS X, as long as you don't expect to do
> *any* UI work in C#, etc. As others have said, the Cocoa UI is fairly
> unique and, so far, there is nothing that allows the development of a
> "single source" UIs.
> >> I agree that C# and the .NET libraries are much easier to get to know
> >> than ObjectiveC but are you expecting to write apps primarily for
> >> Windows that can run on Mac, or the other way around?
> >
> > Neither. For me, Mono != Windows programming, and Windows Programming
> > does not seem to be the only objective of Mono. Though compatibility
> > may be a goal, a Mono programmer can write entire application suites
> > without compiling or running a single line on Windows. Maybe, here-in
> > lies the problem with your perception of what Mono is? :-)
> My perception of Mono is of a superb effort to allow folks to use, what
> started as, the .NET framework and languages like C# to create the
> business logic for any application and to have that code available to
> Windows, Linux, OS X and more.
> Unfortunately, creating a UI is another matter and, as good as Mono is
> for non-visual programming, it does not contain a valid UI building
> solution that will work for all platforms; for that we still have to use
> "native" tools for each platform if we are to get the expected user
> experience.
> > Simplicity. I write C# code for a living. I love Objective-C, but
> > sometimes it's quicker to use what you are most familiar with....
> <shrugs>
> Quicker maybe and, since I have also been doing more C# work than
> anything else for the last four years, I would agree that it is a
> superb, easy to use, language; coming from Delphi and acknowledging that
> the language has some of its origins in that language, I find no problem
> in switching back and forth between the two (except for the usual = ==
> := problems)
> However, I get paid to use what the client wants me to use so, at
> present, I am writing in C#, Delphi Prism and ObjectiveC, sometimes all
> in the same day. Now, that certainly keeps the brain agile :-)
> Joanna
> --
> Joanna Carter
> Carter Consulting
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