You know, Moonlight is as close to Silverlight as is humanly possible given the actual number of warm bodies doing the work. My understanding is that Microsoft have provided all the documentation and support that could be asked for as soon as Microsoft itself actually had it to hand out. If push comes to shove, and Microsoft needs this stepped up a speed notch, I am certain they will pay Novell to round up a hugeish dev team and simply get it done. Until they have got this thing out to all the mobile platforms, and can start talking about “minimum cross-platform feature levels,” then frankly I don’t think Microsoft cares.
Now, if the project devs want to respond to me and say “I’m sorry, you’re wrong, Microsoft have been standoffish douches” then I will accept their word on that. My understanding of the situation however is completely the opposite.
If you want to know why Microsoft isn’t pounding out their own client for Linux then the simple answer is “because they don’t have to.” There are these people out there who apparently will take this task off their hands for a far smaller financial investment than Microsoft actually throwing money at bodies to code it for them. (Instead of several coders and some administration staff they burn what, one body’s worth of time doing co-ordination with the project?) They have so many other platforms to port Silverlight to that anything that made putting it on Linux/Unix, (a platform Microsoft doesn’t have all that much experience with,) easier was, is, and always will be welcomed.
I would normally applaud cynicism, but I think you completely miss that Microsoft actually WANTS Silverlight to be everywhere, including Linux and Unix. I seriously doubt Microsoft would ever “pull support” on this platform for a number of very good commercial reasons having to do with setting the standards and controlling the ever living fnord out of them. The more widespread it becomes, the better off Microsoft is. Silverlight is one of the only things Microsoft is actually doing right. They are playing the very long game with this product, and not worrying about quarterly figures.
Moonlight is not Silverlight…yet, but eventually feature parity will become a Microsoft priority.