Earlier this week, I was one of the first to report the Borland results and sale of CodeGear to EMBT (Embarcadero Technologies), and must admit that at that time I was overwhelmed and had no idea yet what to think about all this - but now I do.
It's two days later, and I have the benefit of having spoken (via Skype, chat or normal phone) with several CodeGear employees, partners and customers.
The overall feeling seems to be optimism, based on a number of factors.
I also found it very encouraging that the domain www.DatabaseGear.com (www.DataGear.com was already taken) has been registered by EMBT as a side-kick to www.CodeGear.com (so the name CodeGear might not even disappear after the deal is done).
- EMBT is also a company for (SQL) developers (some people at EMBT have a Borland background)
- Their Eclipse-based tools can be integrated/combined with JBuilder SKUs
- Their database/SQL tools can be integrated/combined with the Delphi/C++Builder SKUs
And apart from reading CodeGear blogs, I can also recommend the blogs at Planet Embarcadero.
In fact, let me share a little tip to add this blog feed to the Delphi and RAD Studio IDE 2007:
- Go to Program Files\CodeGear\RAD Studio\5.0\Welcomepage\xml
- Edit menuRSSFeeds.xml
- At the bottom, just before the closing tag, add the following:
- And of course feel free to add my own two blogs as well (the first one with monthly articles is already present, the second one is not):
<title>Dr.Bob's Delphi Notes</title>
And with that, it's time to check out the database/SQL related tools (like an SQL Debugger and Profiler - it would be cool if these could be integrated into Delphi / RAD Studio, as I suggest here).
And now, my wishes for the future of Delphi... Right now, I need to have different versions of Delphi on my machine. Delphi 7, 2006 and 2007 to be specific.
Delphi 7 was the last version of Delphi to have the CLX designer, adding support for Windows and Linux. I still maintain some Delphi 7 / Kylix 3 projects (WebBroker and BizSnap XML, deployed on Linux).
Delphi 2006 was the last version of Delphi with .NET 1.1 and WinForms support and designers for C# (WinForms but also ASP.NET). As a result ECO for WinForms (using Delphi or C#) is stuck at Delphi 2006.
I still maintain one Delphi 2005 ECO II and some Delphi 2006 ASP.NET 1.1 Projects (using Borland Data Provider for .NET and DB Web components).
Delphi 2007 is the first IDE with native Vista support right from the start, and the best Win32 SOAP implementation for Delphi and C++Builder (with continued, appreciated, contributions from Bruneau, among others).
However, given the fact that the Delphi/C++Builder Roadmap right now only mentions the native future, I hope Delphi 2007 for .NET is not the last version with ASP.NET support, leaving only VCL for .NET for the .NET flavour of Delphi. Especially for ASP.NET Web Services, there's hardly a designer needed. It would be a shame if we'd have to move to C# (or, dare I say it, VB) and VS.NET to build ASP.NET web applications.
(of course, IntraWeb / VCL for the Web is a great web solution, too, especially the AJAX support, but some of my clients also demand ASP.NET, AJAX and soon Silverlight support as well).
Anyway, time will tell. With the sale of CodeGear to EMBT, I'll see a great future for native Delphi (and databases), and an equal great future for managed Eclipse-based offerings. Let's just hope the Delphi for .NET personality will not fall behind...