Why I choose Delphi

by Aug 17, 2017

Why do I use Delphi

I have been using Delphi since the first version came out back in 1995. My first encounter with Delphi was with Cary Jensen doing a presentation in Copenhagen. I was a student at the time, and didn't really have the money to attend the presentation, which was something like $250. Luckily my brother invited me. The $250 included a licensed copy of Delphi on CD ROM.

This was the days of DOS – Windows 3.11, so writing a program in Turbo Pascal or anything like it was a timeconsuming thing. Especially if you wanted a User Interface.

So, Cary walked us through the stuff, and the one thing that stands out very clearly in my memory is that he built a multimedia application that could play an AVI file with sound AND video, in under 60 seconds. He actually asked three volounteers to time him with a stopwatch. Needless to say he nailed it in very good time.

So, I was hooked, and I have been using Delphi ever since.

But why do I continue using Delphi? There are multiple reasons.
One thing is, I know my way around Delphi now, we been friends for more than 22 years. Back in school I learnt that one should choose the correct tool for the current job. Well guess what, Delphi has proven to be the correct tool for almost ALL the projects I've been working on. 

It's blazingly FAST. Both compiling the projects, even large projects, even really massive projects are compiled very FAST (compared to "competing" products, I'd even say extremely fast).

It's built on a technology that is robust and stable. The companies that have been developing Delphi (Borland, Inprise, Borland, Codegear, Embarcadero (Idera)) have done a tremendous job of maintaing backward compatibilty. I am actually currently helping a customer lifting a project that is currently in Delphi 2007, to Delphi 10.2 Tokyo. The oldest files I have encountered in this project are dated 1990.. Yes, 1990 pas-files even before Delphi was born.

Another company I know of just keep changing direction, to quote a quote.. "You should abandon Delphi, its old, use Silverlight, it's the future". This is obviously an old quote, as the company who pushed Silverlight as being the future, now is pushing something else as being the future, and they have deprecated nearly every development technology they have introduced.

Delphi… is Delphi, keeps on evolving and just gets better and better.

So, not too many years ago, well ok.. over 10 years ago… A large company intruduced a new phone. A phone with a touch-screen. It didnt arrive in Denmark until a couple of years later, but it was actually awesome. I wanted one, I wanted to build apps for it. So I learnt a new development language. That was tough, but I did manage to build an app.

I do not use this other language any more, as in my Delphi box, I can now target not only this particular smartphone, but both both Android and iOS. There was a third option around for a couple of years, as being the new "the future" but this was deprecated too.

In the Delphi box I have all the language features I want, the RTL *) as well as the VCL *) keeps growing bigger and bigger. And with the addition of the Firemonkey *) framework, we now target quite a lot of devices and operating systems. Windows 32 and 64, Mac OSX, Linux, iOS 32 and 64 and Android. Now thats awesome.

There is also the component based development. Its so easy to drop components on the form, and set the properties with the Object Inspector, writing code to these components, using the RTL will hide all the gory detalis of which OS you are targeting, and even hides the API of the OS.. BUT… If I want to, I can call the OS API directly, I dont have to use the Delphi RTL to access the OS, I can just hook directly into the OS.

Delphi Community is also just so great. There are quite a few, at least in Europe, Delphi conferences going on, I myself am going to "The LAB" in Eindhoven later on the 19th of September, and it's good speakers doing the sessions. 
I am also hosting, along with the Danish Users Group, an event here in Denmark in October where Daniele Teti, author of the best selling Delphi Cookbook is coming to speak. At this bi-annualy event we've had awesome speakers, and just to name a few (I am not naming everyone, just a few) Jim McKeeth, Cary Jensen, Marco Cantú, Nick Hodges, Pawel Glowacki, David I, Primoz Gabrielcic, Malcolm Groves and many many more.

These awesome Delphi Gurus have all been willing to share and teach their knowledge.

Yes, I must say.. I'm a Delphi guy and I'm proud of it.

There a so many reasons to keep using Delphi, and if you havent used Delphi yet.. Go grab a copy

*) VCL = Visual Component Library. All of the installed components you can place on a form and set their properties with the Object Inspector. The VCL is Windows only.

*) RTL = RunTime Library. All of the objects and code bits that are independant of the operating system. Its just code.

*) FireMonkey (or FMX) = The visual components that you use in multi device projects. Runs on all Windows, MacOSX, iOS and Android

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