Spirit of Delphi Award 2009

Delphi SpiritAutumn again. And I hope that also this year we’ll have (again) a winner for Spirit of Delphi Award. Besides of marketing speak I do think that this form of recognition is quite important in order to keep the community together, like a family…

Already, some movements are seen: Jim McKeeth interviewed Andreas Hausladen (the last (?) winner in 2007 – IIRC in 2008 we were all ‘occupied’ with the new Delphi 2009 and forgot about this – shame on us), someone else asked for the complete list of winners. For your convenience I repost the list here:

  • 1998: Robert M. Czerwinski (The Delphi Super Page) and Fedor Koshevnikov, Serge Korolev and Igor Pavluk (RX Library)
  • 1999: Marco Cantù and Bob Swart
  • 2000: Maxim Peresada (Torry’s Delphi Pages)
  • 2001: Project JEDI (a collective award)
  • 2002: Mark Miller (of CodeRush fame)
  • 2003: Ray Konopka (Raize Software)
  • 2004: Nick Hodges (Lemanix then – now – oh, well…)
  • 2005: Pierre le Riche (FastMM4)
  • 2006: The community
  • 2007: Andreas Hausladen (DDevExtensions, VCL Fix Pack and IDE Fix Pack. Much of the code of his DelphiSpeedUp were incorporated into Delphi 2007 and most all of it into Delphi 2009. Component Toolbar in Delphi 2010 – adapted text from Jim’s blog)

Also, on Meta.StackOverflow.com there is a question related to our theme, saying Are there famous developers using StackOverflow?. Go there, link your SO.com account (you’ll receive 100+ points reputation just for that) and push up our folks.

Nick is the first, at the time of writing just behind Bjarne Stroustrup ( 🙂 ) and Allen & Barry a little bit lower but on the same place with Eric Lippert. Jan Goyvaerts does very good and also Andreas Hausladen is present. Go and vote for them – this is beyond our personal preferences (if any) it will help everyone if we’ll make Delphi more respected and known.

…returning to our main theme, Spirit of Delphi Award 2009, do you have some candidates?

Please write them down in the comments and I’ll make a poll to see who’ll win. Well, I don’t want to bias anyone, but taking in account that is better to give this award to someone who didn’t receive it yet, isn’t an Embarcadero employee and “did the most for the rest of us” – I’m thinking at (at least) two persons who, perhaps, can be candidates for this Award:

1. Zarko Gajic (“About.com Guide to Delphi Programming since 1998” – as is written in his blog). As perhaps you know, is #1 Delphi Site which provides tips, examples, help, how-to’s etc. In my humble opinion it is an invaluable resource for our community. Also, I do think that without this site, our community would be way smaller. (hint, hint, doc team).

2. Peter Below. Well, what can I say about Peter Below? For the ones who doesn’t know him, the words are quite incapable to describe who he really is. He is and was (and I hope will be) one of the best (if not the best) TeamB members in giving technical support in Borland, Inprise, DevCo, CodeGear, Embarcadero’s technical newgroups since… I don’t know when. Many many many years ago for sure. His very humble and skilled presence gave always a feeling of confidence to all of us.

Let me tell you something: While I was preparing this post I searched for info about Peter Below. Doing a Google with his name gave me a heap of more than 150,000 results. But the appealing moment was when I tried to add some keywords to refine my search. Pressing the spacebar and preparing to write something, Google, which usually floods my browser with a sea of keywords, this time returned just one word:

Peter Below

And I think that this says it all.

What do you think?

PS: Should we institute also a ‘Delphi Community Award’ to find which is the most popular Embarcadero employee?

37 thoughts on “Spirit of Delphi Award 2009

  1. IMHO, Zarko Gajic (gajba) certainly deserves the award! This guy is a ‘Jack of all things’ in Delphi related stuffs. And he is a master too!

    East or west, Gajba is the best! 😉

    Long live master Gajba!

  2. Zarko Gajic gets my vote – I’ve been following his pages on About.com ever since I started using Delphi.
    Having come from a VB background where you are spoilt for choice when it comes to documentation, hints, tips and help Zarko has proved an invaluable source in help and inspiration.

    Keep up the good work Zarko.

  3. The name of the price is “Spirit of Delphi Award 2009”. So I think the winner should be one whose light is shining this year in extrem.

    Peter Below and Zarko Gajic have deserves this price in the years 2008, 2007, etc too.
    So, for people like this we need an other award:

    Delphi Legends

    I think that the comunity is not at the position to give a price to an embarcadero member, because we only know about the members what embarcadero let us know.

    • +1 for Delphi Legends

      About the prize for Embarcadero’s employees: See it like a “we like and approve what you do”. This doesn’t mean that the employee is the best one in the company. Also, this will be a strong stimulative factor to push someone forward or bringing him back – depending on the case.

  4. That’s a problem of the Delphi community. Lot of enthusiams, but little insight. To judge Hodges a “famous developer” – on par with Stroustrup – shows their naivety really.
    If we talk about Heijlsberg, Thorpe, Bauer, ok, we’re talking about famous *developers” who left their sign on TurboPascal and Delphi. But Hodges?? Ok, he may be doing his best to spread Delphi, but he is not a famous *developer* who left his sign in famous applications.

    • It’s all about humans, Luigi, is all about humans.
      Logically you’re right, of course, but look again at that question: 1st is Jon Skeet. Now compare him with the developers which are bellow him. The responses are emotional not logic. That’s why we need to push them up. After this we will take care to bash them accordingly. 😉

      And, yes, we do have problems in our community. And the 1st one is the lack of enthusiasm. It really doesn’t matter if because of it appear such ‘mistakes’ – other communities are much much worse than ours in this regard (eg. .NET / Microsoft in certain areas, Mac, PostgreSQL etc.). We must work a lot in order to (re)ignite the enthusiasm at the desired level.

      • 1st is Jon Skeet – and looks at comments. And look at the definition of “famous” in the question. What is “fame”? The StackOverflow ranking? The number of Google results? We have a strange idea of “fame” nowadays. Fame is something that stands time, not a number of “hits” today. Probably famous developers as a lot to do without being able to publish it, and get much fewer hits.
        I’d prefer logical responses that emotional ones – I expect them from developers – oh well, they removed version 13 because of superstition!
        I’d prefer the Delphi community to get out of childhood and become an adult community of professionals. There’s a lot of childish still, as the religious-like worshipping of the product, some members, and sometimes the company too – which probably led Stob to write her funny tales.
        Sometimes too much enthusiasm is as much negative as too little, because it may hide real issues that must be faced before it’s too late. Hiding them under the carpet, shouting “whatever they decide is the the right decision for us because they know what is best for us” like in a communist or teocratic country won’t help the “community” at all. At least not those who work with Delphi, not play with it.

  5. Although I respect Zarko’s work, my vote would definitely go to Peter Below. His snippets were invaluable to me when I was still learning Delphi.

    @Rich: Thanks but I certainly didn’t contribute one tenth of what Zarko and Peter did.

    • Anyway, if you don’t mind, you are now a nominee. I do think that this is a recognition to your work even if you “certainly didn’t contribute one tenth of what Zarko and Peter did.” 🙂 FTR, I also agree with Rich’s proposal.

  6. Wow, some real heavyweights [including in the suggestions posts] there. I, pretty much, use them all quite extensively when when I need to learn something new or am looking for an add-in to help me improve the functionality of the IDE. As much as those already mentioned are all guru’s to me, I have a couple in addition, that certainly deserve honorable mention:

    Jim McKeeth http://www.delphi.org/
    Neil Moffatt http://www.delphibasics.co.uk/ and
    Alister Kristie http://codegearguru.com/

    If the two given are the limits of the voting, it’s a really tough call but I’d have to go with Peter.

  7. My vote goes to Peter! Peter should have got this years ago …

    Anyway thanks for putting me on the list and thanks to all who gave me “+1″ 🙂

    @”John G” : I like this one “East or west, Gajba is the best” – can I use that?
    Btw, oh stranger, how do you know my super-secret nickname?

    @Alexandre: yes, but there’s still time for me to write about ’em 🙂

    @Heinz: I think that “Spirit of Delphi Award″ means only “Spirit of Delphi Award” not FOR a particular year. This prize was given to people of the Delphi community whose contribution through time was “recognized”.

    • Go to the sister site (in our case meta.so.com), and create an account with the same OpenID which you used on SO.com. After this on the ‘Accounts’ tab on your newly created Account (see ‘My Account’) you should have the option ‘Link the account to the account from SO.com’. Beware, you cannot earn more than 200 points daily. So, if you want to make points, do it in a day in which you didn’t gain anything.


      PS: If isn’t clear please drop a note to expand further.

  8. Hi,

    While I would surely vote for Zarko Gajic, I just thought: maybe Peter McNab who passed away recently (this year), long time developer of DUnit, should get some (even tardive) recognition of his work. If not as a community award, maybe as a Embarcadero “Delphi heros hall of fame” …


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