Miguel de Icaza

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Miguel de Icaza at the MySQL Conference 05

Miguel de Icaza (* 1972 in Mexico City ) is a free software developer and entrepreneur. He is the co-founder of Gnome , Mono and Xamarin .


Miguel de Icaza studied at the National Autonomous University of México mathematics , but without ever reaching an academic degree.

His first successful free software project there was in 1994 the development of the file manager Midnight Commander , which is still widely used today , and he was also one of the first contributors to the Wine project.

Interviews in the summer of 1997 between it and Microsoft to the Internet Explorer for SPARC porting failed due to his lack of a university degree , which the H-1B -Visum requires for an appropriate work permit in the United States.

In August 1997, together with Federico Mena, he started the Gnome project to develop a free graphical user interface. Up to this point in time there was no free, uniform desktop environment for Linux (with the exception of KDE , whose licensing situation was not clear enough for many members of the community at that time). As the basis of the Gnome desktop, Miguel de Icaza used and expanded the free GTK library , which was originally developed for the GIMP image processing program .

In 1999 he and Nat Friedman founded the company Helix Code, which focused on the development of GNOME applications. A little later, the company was renamed Ximian. In 2003 the company was taken over by Novell .

In 1999 he received the FSF Award . In 1999, he was also named Innovator of the Year 1999 by the MIT Technology Review . Time Magazine named Icaza one of 100 Innovators for the New Century in September 2000.

In 2001 Icaza started the Gnumeric Project, a free spreadsheet program inspired by Microsoft Excel .

The free implementation of the .NET framework, known as Mono, and the improvement of existing GNOME applications, besides his public relations work, took up most of the time in the following years.

Despite his contributions and achievements in the free software environment, Icaza is not without controversy, as he is potentially open to technologies from the Windows or proprietary software environment. In addition to the initiation of Nachimplementierungen of Microsoft technologies ( COM / CORBA  → Bonobo , Outlook  → Evolution , .NET  → Mono, Silverlight  → Moonlight ), Icaza also defended Microsoft's Office Open XML (OOXML) document standard compared to the extensive criticism of open source - and free software community.

For his openness to Microsoft technologies, for example, he was openly criticized by Richard Stallman during Software Freedom Day in Boston in 2009 as a traitor to the free software community . Icaza reacted calmly on his blog by pointing out that, on the one hand, he believed in a world of possibilities and, on the other hand , was always open to concrete suggestions from Stallman on how FOSS can be strengthened in the world.

In early 2010, Icaza received the Microsoft MVP Award in the C # category . In March 2010, he was a Most Powerful Voices in Open Source - metric calculated as the fifth most influential member of the open source community.

In April 2011, Novell was taken over by Attachmate and in the course of this all projects with a mono-reference were discontinued. De Icaza then founded Xamarin in May, where Mono and related projects are now being continued.

In 2012, Icaza sharply criticized the Linux desktop as "dead"; He cited the developer-focused culture, the fragmentation of the distributions among each other and the lack of backward compatibility as reasons for this . Linus Torvalds and other Linux greats responded by pointing out that by founding the Gnome project, Icaza himself contributed to the further fragmentation of the Linux ecosystem, which is also not known for (API) stability - in contrast to Linux Kernel , the first priority of which has always been to maintain userland binary compatibility.

Private life

Miguel de Icaza came from a family of scientists ; his father was a physicist , his mother a biologist .

He has been married to the Brazilian Maria Laura Soares da Silva (now Maria Laura de Icaza) since 2003 .

De Icaza made cameo appearances in the films Antitrust and Codename: Linux .

Web links

Commons : Miguel de Icaza  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Nikolai Bezroukov: MC line - power of DOS to UNIX ( English ) www.softpanorama.org. December 16, 2011. Retrieved September 2, 2012.
  2. ^ Wine History ( English ) wiki.winehq.org. Retrieved November 24, 2012: " Several of the early developers included some of the first Linux kernel hackers including Eric Youngdale and David Metcalfe. Other recognizable names included Alexandre Julliard who now leads Wine and Miguel de Icaza of GNOME fame. Bob Amstadt headed the development. "
  3. Archived copy ( Memento of the original dated February 24, 2001 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / primates.ximian.com
  4. 1999 Free Software Awards
  5. 1999 Young Innovators Under 35 ( English ) technologyreview.com. 1999. Retrieved September 2, 2012: "1999 Innovator of the Year: Miguel De Icaza"
  6. The Gnumeric spreadsheet ( English ) In: Gnumeric . Retrieved September 6, 2010: “ Gnumeric has been coded mainly by Miguel de Icaza, with help from other intrepid hackers that have contributed code, bug fixes and documentation. "
  7. Miguel De Icaza: software I have worked on ( English ) ximian.com. April 21, 2009. Archived from the original on February 18, 2012. Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Retrieved September 4, 2012. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / primates.ximian.com
  8. OOXML. . Slashdot . Retrieved August 19, 2008.
  9. ^ The EU Prosecutors are wrong . Retrieved October 13, 2013.
  10. ^ OOXML: The Wins . Retrieved October 13, 2013.
  11. ^ Roy Schestowitz: Miguel de Icaza “is Basically a Traitor to the Free Software Community,” Says Richard Stallman ( English ) techrights.org. September 21, 2009. Retrieved September 2, 2012.
  12. Miguel de Icaza: On Richard Stallman ( English ) tirania.org. Archived from the original on February 21, 2013. Retrieved October 13, 2013: “ I want to say that God loves all creatures. From the formidable elephant to the tiniest ant. And that includes Richard Stallman. As for me, I think that there is a world of possibility, and if Richard wants to discuss how we can improve the pool of open source / free software in the world he has my email address. Love, Miguel. "
  13. Miguel de Icaza's web log ( English ) February 11, 2010. Accessed August 30, 2012th
  14. markw: The Most Powerful Voices in Open Source ( English ) mindtouch.com. March 17, 2010. Archived from the original on October 23, 2012. Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Retrieved March 21, 2010. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.mindtouch.com
  15. Novell acquisition completed . heise.de. April 28, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2011.
  16. ^ Announcing Xamarin . Miguel de Icaza. May 16, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2011.
  17. ^ Novell / Xamarin Partnership around Mono . Miguel de Icaza. July 18, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2011.
  18. Sebastian Grüner: Miguel de Icaza - Why Mac OS X is superior to the Linux desktop . golem.de . August 30, 2012. Retrieved on August 30, 2012: “ Too different distributions and a lack of backward compatibility prevented the breakthrough of Linux on the desktop because it kept external developers away, says Gnome project founder Miguel de Icaza. With Mac OS X it was different. "
  19. Miguel de Icaza: What Killed the Linux Desktop ( English ) tirania.org. August 29, 2012. Retrieved on August 30, 2012: “ In my opinion, the problem with Linux on the Desktop is rooted in the developer culture that was created around it. "
  20. Annika Kehrer: Miguel's Rant: "What we did wrong" . Linux magazine . September 3, 2012. Retrieved September 5, 2012: “ Miguel de Icaza analyzes why, in his opinion, Linux lost the race on consumer desktops. The community finds it difficult to deal with this factually. "
  21. Dr. Oliver Diedrich: The week: desktops and pears . heise.de . September 7, 2012. Retrieved September 8, 2012.
  22. Aleksey Dolya: Interview with Miguel De Icaza ( English ) Linux Journal . April 25, 2003. Retrieved August 19, 2008: “ Talking with the GNOME creator about its origins and purpose. "
  23. Jurandréia Santos: Entrevista Maria Laura De Icaza . September 10, 2005. Retrieved September 6, 2010.