Ok, now we have all the standard arguments out of the way - thanks so far.
The thing I'm wondering about is the potential that no one sees in Mono. Why does Mono compete with MS? I hope you dont think that all programs written in Mono are under the GPL... (and in what way does Novell gain from Mono, Jeremy?)
I mean why did MS make the .NET platform free in the first place? In my opinion, they did it because they hoped for the broad acceptance of the community, so that people would start using it because its a great platform.
Do you have any idea how many more people will program for .NET if it runs on Linux, Unix, Mac... I mean seriously, isn't this a huge opportunity for MS to start selling products to all those other users - without any more effort than to bring the managed world
there (for instance by providing a bit System.Windows.Forms code)?
I'm open for all the different opinions you might (and will have.