Compared to pretty much any GUI/code-behind editor the Delphi concept is an absolute joy to use. Sadly it's been a long time since the components have been updated (it's still pretty much a Win32 clone from what I can tell and today the Lazarus component palette feels extremely outdated). I just wish the Xcode folks would have taken a few more pages from Delphi's playbook.
It's nice to see this environment lives on in Free Pascal/Lazarus.
I sometimes think the Pascal idea could be rediscovered some day, maybe with a syntax addition or two.
Indeed. Delphi was clearly influenced by NeXT/Interface Builder, but even back in 1995 it was miles ahead of today's Xcode.
For those not familiar with it, Delphi's UI editor was always live. You could create a data source object, enter the database connection info, then create a table view and point it at the data source, and the table would be filled with real data -- all within the editor. Like Interface Builder, the editor was running the real visual components (the equivalent of Cocoa's NSView), but unlike Interface Builder, Delphi focused on providing a true WYSIWYG experience, making it very easy to build new visual components that would be rendered live in the editor. Apple has moved away from this, in fact, with the latest Xcode no longer supporting plugins, and so custom views can no longer be rendered inside Interface Builder.
It's incredibly weird and sad that 18 (!) years later, current GUI tools are worse than Delphi was in 1995.
I don't know what has happened that Borland stopped beeing the best place to work for great engineers, but that could be probably some great case studies for contemporal tech companies.
Really pity that we have to reinvent again where we've been 15 years ago...
Random person on SO seems to agree http://stackoverflow.com/questions/7766753/what-ide-is-the-d...
I just wish they had more dialects to choose from, a highly optimizing Oberon compiler would be nice to have (although the code size of the project would give Prof. Wirth chills). And, well, Modula-3…
There's also a new standard for Ada out, so fans of the Algol/Pascal family would have their weekend research/projects cut out for them this year.
The syntax of closures (they had to invent their own name, anonymous methods) is very long-winded. And generics? Only useable after several versions. Which leads to the most important point: quality is s*it (I'd suppose because they cannot tame the complexity any more).
Hello 'it works' likely won't get you far :-)
It's a pity, but the sooner they bankrupt the better. Something more focussed and contemporary might emerge or people invest and switch to FreePascal. Would love to have a native Pascal based ecosystem which would be innovative and friendly, like let's say, Xamarin!
I remember when later I had to use Java, and their javadoc documentation, the switch was a big pain in the ass.
Used to have exactly the same opinion (grew up with Pascal too), but haven't looked back ever since I discovered Go..
Turbo Pascal was such a cool technical achievement, and Pascal was definitely not a bad language at all. Great learning language, and great at other things too.
Check out Lazarus too, the Delphi like IDE for Free Pascal: http://www.lazarus.freepascal.org/
Too bad most programs weren't written in Delphi instead of C/C++, or we could've avoided all those pesky string based buffer overflow exploits since Object-Pascal doesn't allocate strings on the stack!
But more seriously, that means no "smashing the stack for fun and profit" in Object-Pascal, and that's a good thing.
I picked up learning Delphi about 8 years ago when it was supposed to be "dead" then, and since then it has been my secret weapon. I still use C once in a while, but I am so much more productive in Delphi and the Free Pascal.
Long live pascal.
Any good modern Pascal product should fork from where D7 left off.
Delphi has offloaded .NET support to a partner (RemObjects' Delphi Prism/Oxygene). Since Delphi 2007, they have doubled down on native development. Even releasing native console and GUI compilation support for OSX, and iOS in late beta.
Since Delphi 7 (released in 2002), Delphi (and FPC) have added:
* Anonymous methods
* Enhanced RTTI
* Records with methods
* for in loop
* final methods
* Operator overloading
* sealed methods
* strict private
* strict protected
* Nested classes
* Class helpers
* Class constructors and destructors
* Static class methods
I wondered not that long ago if FreePascal could be a cross platform solution to develop GUI apps with Lazarus. Anyone having experience with that?
Or, just check their screenshot gallery:
Friends who landed at the Pascal version of this course appear to ask much less questions about parsing the syntax.
Even the most complex object pascal code using pointers and closures and generics all together looks boring and easy to parse for anyone who has done some code.
This might sound awesome (and it is), but this is also a huge turn off for new comers, lots of people think delphi/object pascal is like visual basic ...
Free Pascal : Readable like Python , fast like C++/C
Another option is to consult the download page for free pascal compiler (this is one of the mirrors)
Also lazarus ide download stats