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Hi there! I’m working on Retool (https://retool.com), which is “Delphi in the cloud”. The goal, as you said, is to make it easier and faster to build “UI-heavy software”. If anybody has any comments or suggestions on how we could market something like this, please let me know! In david@. Thanks!

Not sure exactly where your product lands in a continuum between where Delphi was in the late 90s and where Microsoft Access was in the late 90s with its ability to create forms on top of databases, or maybe Oracle Forms. Delphi was the more heavy-duty option for cases that involved a more substantial investment in coding-up actual logic.

Now when I think "substantial investment" and then look at your website, what comes to mind is "lock-in nightmare". Sorry, not trying to be cruel, just wanting to give you an honest opinion.

I mean: Picture a development team pouring real efforts into development work, then training end-users to use the final product. That represents a real investment. And that investment is then locked into a vendor, where it's unclear what will happen to that investment if the vendor should decide to change the pricing model or go out of business.

I guess the original Delphi did have that problem, but the world was just a different one in the late 90s. You bought your copy of Delphi on a CD with a perpetual license, and an organization that had lock-in to Windows NT software would see it as a perfectly viable path, to keep those Windows NT systems running for the next 20 years to recoup any investment in software. Plus Microsoft was actually pretty good (and continues to be good) at establishing backwards-compatibility.

That applies to any platform though. It being open source doesn't mean it won't be abandoned or become poorly maintained. Look at the massive churn web frameworks have seen.

Cloud tooling definitely has the problem that vendor financial troubles = a sudden "our incredible journey" and poof, your app is gone. That's something client side apps don't have to worry about.

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