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Programming IT Technology

Delphi Renaissance 262

Posted by Hemos
from the back-from-beyond-the-pale dept.
bongo69 writes "The TIOBE Programming Community Index is reporting that Delphi is experiencing a revival, this coincides with Borland recently releasing Delphi 2005 allowing users to target both win32 and .net platforms, which to some, is a welcome alternative for .net developers reluctant to use Microsoft Visual Studio or the opensource alternative SharpDevelop."
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Delphi Renaissance

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:05PM (#10944195)
    http://lazarus.freepascal.org/

    ok so it doesn't support microsofts .net but it does support windows linux and (just about) mac os x
    • by MacDaffy (28231) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:41PM (#10944530)
      There's an excellent version of the gpc Pascal compiler for Mac OS X available. There's even a plug-in for the Metrowerks CodeWarrior IDE (not free). Anyone familiar with Objective-C and Mac OS X's Cocoa/Carbon development model is invited to help generate wrappers to call the code, Join the mailing list here. The site and mailing-list are also excellent resources for Pascal syntax and engineering questions, so Delphi coders can benefit, as well.
    • I love the promise of Lazarus, and I certainly hope that it actually works out eventually. The #1 problem of Lazarus is that they are contantly playing catchup to Borland, which isn't exactly a quick moving target, but Lazarus is still mostly hobbiests. #Develop has been in development for a much shorter period of time and has seem considerable more progress. If Borland does go under, Lazarus will be a good place to run to if you want to keep some sort of Object Pascal going.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Talk about the smallest market ever conceived.
  • Why? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by bay43270 (267213) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:07PM (#10944206) Homepage
    Numbers are nice, but I'd also like to know why. Does anyone know what advantages Delphi has over Visual Studio and mono products?
    • It's Pascal (Score:5, Informative)

      by wiredog (43288) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:14PM (#10944268) Journal
      Which makes it harder to write bad code. PLus, it's Borland. Borland, IMHO, writes better compilers than MS, and better libraries too.
      • Re:It's Pascal (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Intel makes the best compiler for the usual suspects in languages (C, C++, Fortran).
    • Re:Why? (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      For once, Delphi has supported RAD (what people now think makes .Net great) for ages and in many ways are still far superior to .Net.

      For developing Desktop applications there isn't a better suited development tool.

      It also has an incredibly rich third-party component market:

      http://www.devexpress.com and http://www.remobjects.com are some of the best.

      Why not try it out? Delphi 2005 Architect is available for trial download at http://www.borland.com
      • You have completely misused what RAD stands for. Or maybe what .NET is.

        The two are not comparible. RAD is rapid application development, starting with the IDE, allowing for quick applications. Hardly a Delph-only thing

        .NET is a framework that involves the replacment/evolution from COM, COM+. At least in 20 words or less.

    • Re:Why? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Tablizer (95088)
      Numbers are nice, but I'd also like to know why. Does anyone know what advantages Delphi has over Visual Studio and mono products?

      I don't know about the newest product, but Delphi used to be better for creating mail-able "packaged" applications, while VB targeted custom software. In other words, if you wanted to make a software package (boxed) to sell to many companies, go with Delphi. But VB was often preferred for very customized internal use projects.

      Regarding Mono, VB and Delphi seem to more faithf
      • Can you elaborate on how Java does this connection between GUI and code if not with this event-driven model? Or do you have any links with a short description about it? I'd be really interested since I can't imagine much else apart from the way Delphi etc. do it. Thanks!
    • Re:Why? (Score:2, Informative)

      by Moe Taxes (304424)
      Delphi is fast. Fast development, fast compile, fast execution, most people even learn it fast. Object pascal is a powerful, real programming language. Real programming language means you are programming a machine, not an interpreter in a sandbox. If a PC can do it, pascal can tell it to do it. And Delphi has the VCL, the only way I know of to write a complex program for the Win32 api and maintain your sanity. If Delphi 2005 does for WinFX what Delphi did for Win32 Borland will have another winner.
      • by EddWo (180780)
        Delphi 2005 doesn't target WinFX, it targets .Net 1.1 and System.Windows.Forms. The Windows Forms API is just a wrapper around Win32 and is very similar in design to the VCL as it was created by the same engineers that were poached from Borland by Microsoft.
        Delphi 2005 is basically an alternative IDE for writing Object Pascal and C# applications targeting .Net or the evolution of Object Pascal native applications.
        Perhaps Delphi 2008 or so will target WinFX but I doubt a similar wrapper API will be required
    • Because many programmers find the concepts and philosophies of Wirth to facilitate their art best.
    • I used Delphi for a number of years. With it, we created really useful, truly OO design, really beautiful stuff that substantially simplified everything. As an example, we designed a GUI for industrial ink jet printers. (These printers resemble the 24 pin dot matrix printers of two decades ago in print quality, but can print at 750 ft/min from 1 inch away on the bottom of an aluminum soda can.) They have all kinds of weirdness such as text can only be 5, 7, 9, 11, 13 or 24 dots high, and vertical positi
  • Throughout the years, we've seen many languages die out. It's a natural progression of technology. I can't but think this is merely an act of nostalgia. Is delphi really feasible with the countless superior languages out there, or are people using it for the same reasons they still play NES games?
    • by ites (600337) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:18PM (#10944318) Journal
      The reason is only rarely technological. Borland's languages, from their Turbo- series onwards, were always significantly better than Microsoft's, but the market chooses tools based mainly on intertia and marketing. Microsoft advertised their way to dominance. Remember that so-called "Visual C/C++" was simply a wrapper around a few poor tools, with Visual Basic being the only component-based system, producing slow interpreted code, while for yearsBorland were producing fast compiled OO apps with Delphi.

      There's a reason why some people dislike using MS tools and adore Borland's tools. Often, though, the developer does not have the say in such choices.
      • Keep in mind you're mostly talking in past sense now. Today, things seem to be far from the days of Turbo Pascal to me, both in the Microsoft and Borland camps.

        In my opinion Microsoft has taken a great leap forward especially with the new compiler in .NET that actually *gasp* is starting to follow standards pretty well. We also cut the size on our compiled files across the board with that one in our flagship product, sometimes as much as halving them compared to Visual C++ 6. And then that compiler didn't
        • Past tense, yes.

          Microsoft still play the same game though. Standards for C++? Well, after how many years? And then whole new proprietary languages like C# at the same time...

          The marketing goal is to capture developers, yes? The more bells and whistles the better. The technical focus often gets lost in the process.

          Borland's main quality - before OSS made this a common philosophy - was to place technical quality first. It was, and still is, probably the wrong strategy for a commercial company.
          • Well, after how many years?

            Does that matter when we're talking Delpi 2005?
            We aren't comparing Turbo C with an early version of Visual C.

            And then whole new proprietary languages like C# at the same time...

            They're preserving and improving C++ support. Don't care about C# if you don't wish to care.

            The marketing goal is to capture developers, yes?

            Yes, as with all companies, including Borland.

            The more bells and whistles the better

            I'm sure you'll find the same in Delphi 2005. Heck, they're even app
          • by bad-badtz-maru (119524) on Monday November 29, 2004 @02:02PM (#10944773) Homepage
            The person who originally wrote Turbo Pascal, and was also largely responsible for Delphi, led the C# design team.
        • Keep in mind that Delphi 1 was pretty much Turbo Pascal 9 repackaged and a nice GUI development environment thrown on. The compiler was pretty much the same, and most program written for Turbo Pascal can compile just fine in Delphi. The only major problem I have with that now is that the specialty units in Turbo Pascal like DOS, CRT, Graph, ect. aren't available in Delphi, but a determined hacker could easily put something together for Delphi and make full source code compatability to work... including co

      • In the early days, Delphi was not just a 'Pascal for Windows', but a much-faster-executing alternative to the other RAD system out there - Visual Basic. Remember how slow VB was until version 5 or 6, when it actually became compiled?

        Another reason why it's so popular, is it's based on Pascal. Which is much easier for many people to program than C/C++

        Borland's early C/C++ products for Windows were much faster than Microsofts as well. They did make many mistakes however (remember OWL?)

        Go to http://groups.g [google.com]
    • In actual practice, the abilities of one language or another are often inconsequential to a particular business. Once they have an installed base of software built around a certain language, the costs of switching are higher than any gains achieved from the "superior" language.

      I work for a $1.5 billion company whose ERP runs on RPG. Sure, there's a Java version of the software coming out, but there's just no business case for making that switch. We'll probably still be using RPG for 10 more years...
    • Why do you assume there are "countless superior" languages out there? Have you ever tried programming in Delphi's dialect of Pascal?

      I program in a variety of languages. However, I became a Delphi convert when Delphi was first released. And, I still am a Delphi convert today and it is my tool of choice for Win32 programming.

      As another post points out, Delphi is, and still remainds, a superior IDE, a very fast and optimizing compiler, a wide range of tools and components (VCL and CLX based) and decent. T
    • You are naive if you think that C, C++, Java, or C# are "superior languages". Languages used commercially are basically going in circles and are still at the level of 1960's and 1970's technology.
    • Throughout the years, we've seen many [programming] languages die out. It's a natural progression of technology.

      This statement demonstrates not only a supreme ignorance of technological change, but of Darwin's ideas as well. Don't take it personally, though - this attitude is ingrained in most Slashdotters. If you didn't know, "survival of the fittest" and all the associated bullshit was actually an invention of Herbert Spencer, noted opportunist and pseudo-scientist, building on Darwin's idea of evolut

  • This is the first I've heard of SharpDevelop.

    Other than what I can find at their website, has anyone had practical experience creating and distributing an app using only SharpDevelop?

    • Re:SharpDevelop (Score:2, Informative)

      by arethuza (737069)
      Yes, I've used it for over a year. It isn't nearly as slick as VS.NET but I find it to be pretty usable. When combined with the GUI debugger from the .Net SDK it makes a pretty decent development environment.
    • Re:SharpDevelop (Score:5, Informative)

      by Teancum (67324) <robert_horning@ n e tzero.net> on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:46PM (#10944576) Homepage Journal
      I would say that SharpDevelop is one of the best Free-As-In-Beer environments for you to learn how to write software in C#. Download the ECMA docs for the specification and try to write a few programs, and it works out pretty well. Certainly much better than trying to write something with a text editor and trying to compile by command-line when everything else you may have is done through a GUI environment. Get the C# How-to books if you don't have access to them anyway.

      I happen to be a Delphi developer as well, and my #1 complaint about Sharp Develop is that they use the Visual Studio environment as the model for how user interaction should take place. It isn't bad, but moving between Delphi and #Develop can be a bit of a paradyme shift that is uncomfortable. For those who are VS fans, it would be a much more familiar environment (like the windowing stuff and location of help files, etc.)

      The GUI end is a little bit clunky, but it is getting better. The first time I tried #Develop the menu editor was so buggy that it crashed the package. It has been showing significant improvement over time, and is remarkably stable now for some fairly serious GUI development. They bootstrapped the development with Visual Studio, but I believe that #Develop is self-compiling now (the editor can be edited with itself).

      The part of getting it to work with Mono is a big deal, and the only real reason that it doesn't self-compile in Mono is because Mono lacks the GUI support necessary to get it to work. This is being worked on, and with #Develop getting stable there is now a larger push to get it working in Mono on Windows (and yes, Linux too). It would be terrific if you could get true cross-platform development going for a GPL'ed GUI development environment.
    • We use VS.Net but I took the liberty of trying out SharpDevelop with the solution to our flagship product. The solution is pretty big and fairly slow using VS.Net but it was really slow using SharpDevelop. It was so slow that it was unusable.

      I tried SharpDevelop on a smaller, single project solution. It was definitely agravatingly slow but usable. It was still much slower than VS.Net

  • Delphi big in the UK (Score:3, Interesting)

    by MrBandersnatch (544818) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:18PM (#10944315)
    Actually Delphi is still quite a popular in the UK
    (http://www.cwjobs.co.uk/JS/JobResults.asp?ref erre r=none&SiteID=2&MarketID=14&IndustryID=1&Mode=&Sea rch=Ind&PageNum=1&Industry=IT+%26+Internet&RankByT itle=1&JobType1=&PostedDays=7&Keywords=delphi&Sort =1&Locations=)

    It was SO FAR ahead of the field when it first came out, I actually did my first non-unix based programming on it and was very impressed. Sadly like most Borland products, while being technically superior to their rival offerings they have just never got the market share they deserved.
  • by bflong (107195) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:28PM (#10944423)
    It's interesting to note that Novell is porting SharpDevelop to Mono.
    See http://www.monodevelop.com/ [monodevelop.com]
  • Poor ol' Delphi... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ElGuapoGolf (600734) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:28PM (#10944425) Homepage

    I used Delphi in my first programming job out of College. Initially I chuckled over the fact that it was Pascal, but eventually grew to learn and love Object Pascal.

    It wasn't so much the language that made it great, it was the way the IDE, Debugger and compiler all played so nicely together. And yes, a C++ version was available as well. It was all of the ease of Visual Basic (and let's be honest, more) but without the bullshit of being stuck with some horrible language and the pain of trying to manage runtime distribution. Delphi compiled all dependencies into your binary, if you so wished. No more dll hell, at least, as far as your Delphi applications went.

    It also had the relatively unheard of concept (at least in the windows world, at that time) of direct database access. You didn't have to mess with ODBC. You could write your corporate app for in-house use, and just let them change parameters in configuration screen, use them to connect to a database yourself. No freakin ODBC control panel applet to mess with. Nirvana, I tell you.

    The VCL was another nice Borland item. It was their Visual Component Library (I think) and it was basically a wrapper around the standard Win32 controls/forms. Worked very well, and even made it over to linux with Kylix.

    Unfortunately, Borland subscribed to the commodore school of marketing. The best place to see Borland adverts was in Borland targeted publications. The choir was already converted, but they never figured that out. That combined with typical MSFT tactics (hire away their best developers, give away competing products for a song) reduced Borland to a shell of it's former self. Now they exist by pumping out JBuilder updates every 8 months and living off that revenue gravy train.

    • That was both intelligent and insightful, are you sure you have the right web site? You're supposed to be posting things like "pascal is the sux0r, msft told me so."

      Anyway, I'm a hardware guy that programs for fun and for work when he has to. I've used c, c++, java, ada, pascal, delphi, scheme, asm, matlab, VHDL, etc. When I first used Delphi in 1995 it's IDE was not just beyond anything I had ever used before, that 1995 IDE is STILL beyond the latest C++ IDE Microsoft released to date.

      In addition, Pas

      • Actually, I'll disagree slightly.. :)

        For me the best version of Delphi was V2. The Win16 version was buggy when you really pushed it hard. But Delphi 2.... wow... Even when Delphi 5 was out, I'd use that on a build box and do all my coding with Delphi2. Which is a very nice testament to the backwards compatibility of the language.. yeah, I'm sure I was missing out on all sorts of nice Delphi5 specific features, but 2 was just that good. And even in that early of a version, it was still light years ah
      • ---
        Say you want to write:
        (a or b) and (c nor d) xor (e nand f)

        In Pascal/Delphi you write
        (a or b) and (c nor d) xor (e nand f)
        ---

        I don't recall nor, nand being operators in Turbo Pascal 6 or 7.

        Oh that's right. Borland "updates" the language with every release. Unlike say C which is a standard that largely hasn't changed much since the 80s [yes, there are many nitpicking details that have changed but pretty much any C89/C90 code will compile nowadays].

        So when I write "C" programs I'm not writing "Delphi

        • I would just like to point out that Turbo Pascal != Delphi, unless I'm very mistaken.

          Delphi was Object Pascal... Turbo Pascal wasn't.

          • Delphi was Object Pascal... Turbo Pascal wasn't.

            I guess I was imagining TP 6.5, then.

            If so, it was a bad dream, because Borland never came out with Object Pascal as it was originally defined, and had already been implemented by Apple. What they came up with should really have been called Pascal++, because it was Pascal with C++ style objects. Why? Because their heap code sucked chocolate salty balls at the time, and could never have handled the kind of memory management that heap-only objects would hav

        • So, if I think that typing something twice when it only needs to be typed once is bad, then I suck. Personally, I prefer to leave brainless, repetitive tasks to computers because I hear they are good at that stuff, but then again I suck. Sometimes I even use them to calculate things, or use floating point instead of using fixed point in assembly, or make fire without use of flint nor steal, but that's probably because I suck.
        • Oh, I totally forgot to make fun of you for confusing TP and Delphi, and for assuming you can't write multiple source files in any language without the use of prototypes. But I do suck.

          However, I will gladly pounce on you for mentioning unit headers and comparing them to prototypes... because the headers are automatically written by the IDE!!! Thank you for proving my point for me!

          PS, can't anyone solve my riddle in C? I'll let you build operators that are missing from C. Can you mush them together, l
        • Just to check, I loaded up an old Turbo Pascal 2.0 project that I happen to have kicking around. It's not a trivial project - it's a utility to help with the mechanical aspects of designing a vehicle for Steve Jackson Games "Car Wars" system. Basically, from a full screen text window, you pick and choose items for your car, and the system calculates weight, cost and space. Once you finish, you can print a vehicle sheet just like the one from the Car Wars rule book.

          It was developed on a CP/M system in 1983,
          • Just to check, I loaded up an old Turbo Pascal 2.0 project that I happen to have kicking around. It's not a trivial project - it's a utility to help with the mechanical aspects of designing a vehicle for Steve Jackson Games "Car Wars" system. Basically, from a full screen text window, you pick and choose items for your car, and the system calculates weight, cost and space. Once you finish, you can print a vehicle sheet just like the one from the Car Wars rule book.

            Get out! I guess I wasn't the only one wri

    • by tgrigsby (164308)
      Back when I worked for DHL using BP7, I got a hold of the beta version of Delphi 1.0. It was code named "Wasabi", the EXE was, IIRC, AppBuilder, and it came on six diskettes. It had a tiny subset of the VCL palette, and no real way to talk to a database.

      And I was in love.

      I contracted with a company to move their DOS apps to Delphi after it came out officially. We started out using Delphi 1, but quickly moved to 2 when it was released. Skipped version 3, went to 4, then 5. Awesome stuff.

      I agree compl
  • by gUmbi (95629) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:32PM (#10944458)
    I'm sure that there is going to be a bunch of Delphi bashing posts but Delphi was one of the first truly great object-oriented development environments (the other might be IBM's VisualAge). It allowed for rapid layout of forms with the power of OO components. And the language, although not loved by many, is consistent and just as powerful as Java. The component library was also second to none.
    • Delphi was one of the first truly great object-oriented development environments

      Delphi was a good programming environment, but it came out in 1995. Apple had a powerful visual Pascal-based OO programming environment a decade earlier. And both Delphi and Apple's environments paled in comparison to the Smalltalk environments available since the early 1980's.
      • IBM's VisualAge comes in a Smalltalk environment, and it was also popular around the same time as Delphi. It continues to befuddle me to this day what kind of industry-wide marketing dysfunction caused products like Delphi and VisualAge to go from prominent market positions to nowhere in the span of a few years.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:33PM (#10944464)
    Delphi 2005 is really good value for money. For the same price as previous Delphi releases you get C#Builder, Delphi for Win32 and Delphi for .NET all in the same IDE. And Borland have enhanced the Win32 language too, they haven't just plugged it into the new IDE. So they show that they do actually care about the rest of us that do not believe that .NET really delivers that much benefit (and quite a few negatives actually) to end users.

    Unlike Microsoft, Borland doesn't believe in pushing one platform. They have no specific platform agenda. When you buy Borland tools you know you're getting something that preserves your existing investments well- be they multiple platforms or simply your existing code base. For example, it is much easier to move code from Delphi for Win32 to Delphi for .NET than VB6 to VB.NET.

    That, and all the enhancements to the IDE such as refactoring, sync-edit, and MDA developement make Delphi 2005 a winner!
  • by Weaselmancer (533834) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:35PM (#10944477)

    Microsoft Visual Studio is neither visual, nor is it a studio.

    Discuss.

    • by halivar (535827) <bfelgerNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:48PM (#10944596) Homepage
      Microsoft Visual Studio is neither visual, nor is it a studio.

      It could also be said that Microsoft Works doesn't, and neither does Microsoft Excel. Microsoft does give easy Access, though, because it's hard to lock your Windows.

      Perhaps Microsoft is being more metaphysical? "Try Visualizing a Studio, and you will be there." Sort of a cosmic humanistic what-you-feel-makes-it-real type of software value-add delivery.

      Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go puke now.
  • by Space_Soldier (628825) <not4_u@hotmail.com> on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:39PM (#10944513)
    One thing that annoys me about Borland is that they have a bunch of IDEs that overlap. They should unite all of them and have a single IDE similar to how Microsoft has Visual Studio that supports many languages. If you were to buy a bunch of this IDEs to support multiple programmers who want to use their religious language, the price will be higher than Visual Studio, which comes with the same languages except Pascal and Sun's Java.
  • Very trustworthy (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Guillermito (187510) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:40PM (#10944520) Homepage
    A survey based on a Google search referred on Slashdot. How trustworthy.
  • by Local Loop (55555) on Monday November 29, 2004 @01:44PM (#10944554)

    I don't know (or care) about .NET, but if you are writng a windows program Delphi is staggeringly more efficient to develop in than C++. You can also use it to do Windows API stuff efficiently, meaning you can write most of your custom controls in delphi itself without have to resort to C++.

    I just wish they could get their act together and make better documentation.

    I actually used C++ for many years before finding out about Delphi, but now that I've switched there is no way I would ever go back.

    Of course, more efficient development is not in the best interests of most programmers, because they are motivated to drag out projects as long as possible for job security reasons. But when you are doing fixed-bid contracts, or even if you just care about your reputation, Delphi is the way to go.

    New web cartoon: Jendini.com [jendini.com]

    • I don't know (or care) about .NET, but if you are writng a windows program

      If you are writing windows programs, sooner or later you will need to know and care about .NET. The good news is that it's not that hard.
  • by Junks Jerzey (54586) on Monday November 29, 2004 @02:05PM (#10944797)
    Delphi is some kick-ass technology. It's a solid language, it compiles like *lightning* (essentially instaneous since ~1997), zero link times, and the provided libraries are great. Maybe not greater than .net, mind you, but an excellent alternative that was there many years earlier.

    Delphi used to be the darling of the small developer and hobbyist programmer. Not only did you get all of the above benefits, but the standard edition was only $70. An absolutely brilliant alternative to Visual C++ and Visual Basic.

    But then Borland quietly upped the price and changed the licensing. It used to be Standard for ~$70, Professional for ~$500, Enterprise for ~$1000. Then they changed it so the cheapest edition you could use in a commercial environment was $1000+. The only other version is Personal, around $100, but it is strictly license-bound to be used for learning the language and writing applications that other people don't use. Borland essentially made a one-line change to the license that forced programmers to jump to a product that costs 10x more. The result? Delphi web-sites and tutorials and hobbyist-written programs in Delphi dropped like a rock. Too bad, Borland.
    • by Lucas Membrane (524640) on Monday November 29, 2004 @02:28PM (#10945086)
      You may have noticed that all the other vendors of affordable language vendors have also disappeared. Gone. (Watcom, Symantec, JPI, Utah, Marshall, Oregon, Stoney Brook, ...) Used to be that you could stop at BDalton software and pick up the language of the week for $69. My first copy of Borland's Pascal was $49. And they gave free support.

      Making money in that business with competition from Microsoft on one side and free software on the other must be so difficult. I never try to second-guess the pricing decisions of these firms. Microsoft can decide to lose money on langauages, because languages make the OS business possible. They give away dotnet to anyone who will commit to develop products for it. Last I heard they had over 100 people creating and maintaining one of their language products.

      Do the math. It takes 10 to 200 people to keep one of these full-reatured IDE products in good shape. You need about $500k of revenue each year per employee to make this work. It's a dismal business. If selling to corporations at high prices is the only way Borland can see, I'm not anyone to say that I know better.

    • But then Borland quietly upped the price and changed the licensing.

      They also never seemed to grasp the concept of bundling trial versions into books. I never saw a book+CD about Delphi that had anything resembling a trial version of Delphi. This meant you already had to have a copy just to try the examples from the book.

      The main reason I never used Delphi was that I was pretty much all-Mac at the time, but the #2 reason was that the price of entry was too steep for just trying it out. Pascal was never

      • Borland did make a half-hearted attempt at a "Trial Version" of Delphi a while back. Basically a stripped down version that had some size constraint and other annoying features, but it would compile full source code. I Believe it was a trial version of Delphi 3.

        It certainly could have been thrown onto a book, but Borland had the restrictions on it so tight that you could only download it from their website, and even then you felt like you were signing away your firstborn to the devil after going through
    • I agree 100%. I am not sure they would have done any better charging less, but my impression is they locked too many hobbiest out.

      After all, that's how linux started.

      They should have licensed it based on third party add-ins. For example. $100 buys you the full version of Delphi. All components, all database clases, etc.

      You want to connect to Starbase? (their version of CVS) That's an extra $400. Oh you want data modeling, that's $500, etc.

      This way even the hobbiest can pump out quality apps that c
    • and for that they can keep it.

      I wrote them a nice long LETTER about their pricing before finally giving up and switching to MS products for PC development.

      For around a 100 bucks I get a great editor, debugger, and good libraries to start from with MS products. Why Borland would not provide the entry level product with an install wizard I will never understand, you had to go up to the professional package to get that functionality.

      I love Pascal, it was my first hobby language and I moved from the TP3.0 a
      • $399 is the upgrade price. $999 is the entry level for anything that you want to deploy. $99 gets you the tricycle edition with so many limitations that it'd pass for a demo from any other company.
      • Actually, Borland did try the $99 personal version a couple of years ago. Like Kylix, it wasn't a profitable revenue stream and so it was dropped for something more lucrative - .Net

        With Kylix, I think they erred by not doing a true native port and, instead, used WINE. Their compiler is very good. And, they tried to create (and succeeded) a cross platform library (CLX) that would run on both Win32 and Linux (they used Qt). And, they offered Kylix Personal for free. But, the end product (the IDE) was ju
    • Borland seems to be getting away from being a language vendor. They are now into being a tools vendor since the purchase of several development tool companies. They have a nice stack of tools if you want to drink the cool aid but it will cost you about 3K.

      Maybe they will open source Deplhi (the language). That would be pretty cool. They sell the IDE not the language. Since their IDE works with C#, C/C++ neither of which they own anyway why not "give away the language".
    • Delphi is some kick-ass technology.

      Or rather, it was when it was released about 10 years ago. Since then, a lot has happened to other languages, and not much to Delphi. Java (and C#) have garbage collection and metadata in a simpler type system. Perl and python have other advantages.
      • Or rather, it was when it was released about 10 years ago. Since then, a lot has happened to other languages, and not much to Delphi. Java (and C#) have garbage collection and metadata in a simpler type system. Perl and python have other advantages.

        You're comparing apples and oranges. Delphi is essentially a low-level language. It's higher-level than C, but it's not in the same class as C# and Python. In terms of a language that pulls few tricks behind your back, but still gives you close-to-the-machin
        • You're comparing apples and oranges

          I disagree. Delphi is mostly used for writing database connected and/or GUI applications for business or personal use. I should know, I've written enough of them in Delphi.
          Java and C# are aimed squarely at this market (apples vs. apples), and frankly they do it better.

          I'm not saying that Delphi is badly designed, far from it, but this is only to be expected given that these languages came later to the party, with the benefit of more hindsight and a cleaner slate.

          Delph
  • I just wish they'd (Score:3, Interesting)

    by advocate_one (662832) on Monday November 29, 2004 @04:25PM (#10946276)
    keep Kylix up to date with Delphi and not let it wither...

    Better yet, why have Kylix, when you could just have Delphi with a Linux runtime to support the environment.
  • by StrawberryFrog (67065) on Monday November 29, 2004 @05:14PM (#10946892) Homepage Journal
    Delphi revival? Are you sure? The UK job market stats are as follows:

    C# : still ramping up - here [jobstats.co.uk]
    Java: Recovered well in the last year - here [jobstats.co.uk]

    Delphi - flat as a pancake. Much smaller market, and has failed to recover when the others did, which means it is losing market share to them - here [jobstats.co.uk]
  • The problem I face is that there is not enough good delphi developers out there for a fair market price. We have a consultant that built a program completely in Delphi. Unfortunantely, he wants $200/HR to do anything. Finding someone else is difficult and training internal staff is impossible. I can't find a decent delphi class to speak of. I'm not a huge microsoft development fan, but there are more people who know how to use it and I can get my money's worth. The kicker is that our auditors want us
    • Heh thats so funny. Totally agree.

      Back when I left Uni I had 2 years (academic) development experience with Delphi and was HUGELY fanatical about it as a development environment. Could I get a job using it? NO!!

      A couple of years later I got a position as "lead developer" at a small start-up (1 other developer heh). I jumped at using C++ Builder for development since it was so close to Delphi in so many ways. Spent 2 years developing with it (and it was great apart from all those little bugs that Borland
  • I guess the good old days of that $49.95 Turbo Pascal are long gone. Yeah, I know it's not the same thing but I really wish someone would put out good, commercial, no-nonsense development environments at a very reasonable price again like back in Phillipe Kahn's days at Borland.
    At those prices, a fledgling developer could afford to get their feet wet in fringe platforms like Prolog, C, C++, Pascal, etc. Even Utah COBOL (at $19.95) was worth a look at those prices when mainframe software houses like CA and
  • Yes, in 1986 I first got into contact with 'Turbo Pascal'. And Turbo it was, with integrated debugger (showed you the line where your error was - in the editor!), graphics support, LOGO add-on - and dirt cheap.

    I switched to them, and never went back. Followed them through Borland Pascal into Delphi, and still love it.
    Every time I see people use the MS compilers, I'm surprised. Slooooow. Stupid. Lots of irritating edges and meat hooks.
    Delphi ist just screamingly fast (I rebuild my entire app - well over 80.

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