After reading the interview with Miguel de Icaza (co-founder of Gnome, Ximian and Mono) published in these days by NetCraft, I want to say my personal opinion about Miguel's vision...
In this interview Miguel explains his ambitious project, Mono (a free implementation for GNU/Linux of Microsoft's .Net framework) and talks also about the future of Microsoft (Longhorn).
Miguel says that "we have grown organically a stack completely independent of the Microsoft stack, which we call the Mono stack but it includes things like tools for doing GUI development for Linux - that was one thing that we were very interested in and we actually invested a lot of effort into that.
So today at the core we still have Mono, which is what we wanted to do, and now we've got two very healthy independent stacks: the Microsoft-compatible stack for people who want to bring their applications from Windows to Linux, and also this completely new and fresh stack of things that in some cases are portable from Linux to Windows, and in some cases are very, very Linux specific".
Lots of people don't believe in Mono future but I don't agree with this vision. Mono could be a great platform with a wonderful future, expecially in the GUI development on Linux.
Mono could have a potential "key of power": it offers the possibility of using the development tools and environment that you use for Win development to deploy your code to Linux. You can deploy your code across Windows and Linux platform, independently. Is this a powerful feature? I think so...
Imagine only this scenario... you can build an ASP.NET application that runs on IIS and move this application under Linux on Apache without problems and without change any code. If you plan to develop a portable web application that can run on Windows and Linux independently, don't you think that Mono could be a great platform?
Obviously... Mono has this power and must work hard to maintain it. This could be the key for a wonderful future!