RAD Studio 2010 Review #10: – Database Jewels

Data ExplorerFinally we reached to the database part. Even if we’re talking about a a prerelease beta and anything can change till release, I do think that you’ll see the features described bellow. 🙂 Also, let us not forget to give a thank to the Embarcadero guys for giving us the permission to talk about this.

Perhaps after such a long wait, you will expect to say many things about the Firebird support in Delphi 2010. But I’ll say…  Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review #9: – Attributes, The new RTTI and DB Access

AttributesIn this week we’ll talking about some database / communication features (including Firebird support, Intraweb etc.) Mind you, is a prerelease beta. Anything can change till release. All our gratitude to Embarcadero for giving us the permission to talk about this.

But first, let us try to calm the stir provoked by a post of Embarcadero’s Malcolm Groves in which our Senior Director talks a little bit about attributes. We’ll try here to give an extended example (the classical one about using attributes to implement class persistence) and explain why the attributes are useful and how they will help you in your work…  Continue reading

Building impossible frameworks

twinsSome time ago we had to write an impossible application. And like any other such application, it doesn’t showed up from the beginning how “impossible” it was. It was about a team scheduler which would assign different task to different team members, based on various constraints related to each member’s capabilities as well as to the project time line.
Why I remembered this? Because of some comments on a previous post made by Chris Rolliston and Ken Knopfli. Both made good comments with regard to the hidden complexity which most of the times surfaces during the application lifecycle.
And remember, the most common cause of failure of a software project is (according to Steve McConell) is it’s uncontrolled complexity. Also, Tom DeMarco & Timothy Lister note in their reference book (Peopleware – a must read) that not even a single project (from thousands which authors examined) failed because of a technical reason.
So, we took our weapon of choice (Delphi of course) and started to build the impossible… Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review #8: – And now some feedback from us

RAD GesturesFirst the standard notice: We’re talking about a prerelease beta. Anything can change till release. Big thanks to Embarcadero for giving us the permission to talk about this.

Guys you’ve been great in providing feedback. Imho, this is our role. That’s why please accept my public gratitude, even if I’m not related (in any way) with Embarcadero, because I think that only in this way we can advance further. And as a practical proof of this gratitude I’ll try to answer bellow to some of your questions raised in your comments. (Yep, I do read them). Of course, I’ll do this in the limits of my NDA and on a subjective basis (sorry) trying to answer to the questions which I think that are most important for the crowd. But let’s start… Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review #7: – A historic moment

RAD GesturesHi guys, as usual we’re talking about a prerelease beta. Please keep in mind that anything can change till release. Also, many thanks to Embarcadero for giving us the permission to talk about this.

Well, today, at least for me, is a historic moment. (ok, as a field tester it was some time ago). But why? Take a look at the following picture (it’s a Delphi form in the IDE’s Form Designer), stop reading, and try to spot what is so historical in it. Please feel free to comment at the end… Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review #6: VCL – Language enhancements for Touch and Gestures

RAD GesturesAs always keep in mind that we’re talking about a prerelease beta. Anything can change till release. Also, special greetings to Embarcadero for giving us the permission to talk about this.

Well, as you saw, the Gestures and Touch Engine is a very welcomed addition for some of you guys, rather uninteresting for the others. But because we’re a community, we must understand that sometimes the majority prevails. And for this, we must cast our opinion in order to give an accurate snapshot of our needs. That’s why your feedback is very appreciated. But please be constructive and not punitive. Anyway you were very good so far (kudos btw).

Saying this we’ll move now to the next step of our tour through RAD Studio’s internals. We’ll talk about another feature which was created to allow a smooth transition between different OSes giving the possibility to have the ‘same’ Pascal representation of an external interface for multiple operating systems even if this interface changes. The feature is called…  Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review #5: VCL – Natural Input Overview

RAD GesturesHere we go again… This week we’ll discuss a bit the new things in VCL with a special focus on the RAD Studio 2010’s natural input capabilities. (Gestures and Touch) overview. Mind you that we’re talking about a prerelease beta. Anything can change till release. Also, let us not forget to thank Embarcadero for giving us the permission to talk about this.

With the new engine you can choose different predefined movements of your pointing device (or create new, custom ones) in order to assign them different actions. The ones who use the Opera web browser (but not only) will find this familiar. For the others, let us remind that Windows (and hence Delphi) had a very old gesture already: Drag & Drop. Think at the new engine like something much more powerful. Of course, something which will be very used in pen computing, kiosk applications featuring (multi-)touch screens etc.

Before going in to details, let’s make something clear: Delphi tries to use the touch engine of yet-to-be-released Windows 7. If it cannot (because eg. the application is run on Windows XP), it uses it’s own recognition engine. How it does this? By using a language enhancement ( – subject of another post, of course 😉 ).

But now let’s start to analyze the new Delphi’s gesture engine… Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review #4: Project Management Enhancements

RADStudio 2010Before having a quick look at the new nice things related to the Project Management in RAD Studio 2010 let me remind you that we’re talking about a pre-release beta. Everything can change till release. Also, let us not forget to thank Embarcadero for allowing us to talk about these things.

Before entering in the dry overview some of the features let me stress something: I think that these small features are very important. But, perhaps, not in the way in which one would think at the first glance… Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review #3: Debug Visualizers.

RADStudio 2010Guys, don’t forget that we’re talking about a pre-release beta. Everything can change till release. Also, all our gratitude for Embarcadero for allowing us to talk about these things.

…Once upon a time was a command line compiler. In text mode. You wrote the source in another editor. In text mode also. But the times changed. First, appeared the IDE. All together, way better. In the old text mode.  The notion of integrated debugger appeared. What a relief. But in the text mode. But the times changed. We got graphical GUIs. We got form designers. Graphical. But the debugger remained, basically the same. In the old text mode, even if the text was shown in a graphical GUI. But not anymore… Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review #2: The new old Component Toolbar.

RADStudio 2010…First the legal flotsam: We’re talking about a pre-release beta. Everything can change till release. Also, a big ‘thank you’ goes to Embarcadero for allowing me to do this.

Second, do these steps:

  1. Buy the RAD Studio 2010 (hold on a little on this… 🙂 )
  2. Install the product. (a very quick & pleasant experience)
  3. Open the IDE (it will be fast – don’t go for a coffee)
  4. Right-click in the Toolbar Area.
  5. Choose ‘Component’ from the Popup menu which appears.

And… Continue reading

RAD Studio 2010 Review – Part 1: Top 10

SplashscreenGuys, the picture above is the RAD Studio’s splash screen. Yes, so cool. And yes, Embarcadero gave me the permission to talk about the new RAD Studio 2010. There will be a series of posts on it so, hang on. Also be aware that everything here is from an internal pre-release beta. So, everything can change till RTM. But let’s start…
Continue reading

The Worst Unfixed Fixed Inexistent Bug

Wondering eyesWe all know that Delphi is a really great tool. Many consider it #1 in Desktop Windows development. So do I, but perhaps I’m biased. I use it from so many years, and I still have to find something better that it, especially when it comes to talk about complex GUIs, speed of development, speed and size of executable, power and flexibility given to the developer, mainly when we speak about database-related applications.

Pretty nice advertisement, eh?…

Well, many of us think that this is true, especially with the latest versions of it (I mean D2007, D2009) – guys, no religious wars, please! The post is about another thing.

It’s about a thing which, while “inexistent” (note the quotes) from technical POV (perhaps) it was (and still is!) one of the Most Expensive Human Bugs which I found in my entire career… Continue reading

On Design

DesignThese days we had to work on some glyphs for some components which we’re about to release. Well, we had a great discussion on this because (isn’t it?) we all like to give our favorite color to the bike shed. But sometimes we must overcome our personal passions and inclinations and think to the others. Anyway we do not design for ourselves but for others.

At a first glance we should ask “How do you like it?” And indeed we should.

At a first glance we should obey to what the users  say. And indeed we should.

At a first glance that’s all. But is not… Continue reading

30 Most Influential Programmers Ever

Anders HejlsbergSome nice guys made a list of most influential programmers ever. While this list, as any Top 10 (ok, Top 30) is subjective, and each one of us has his favorites, I cannot hold myself to not remark some notable absences. The #1 (based on the comments of the readers) is Anders Hejlsberg. Also, Philippe Kahn was mentioned.

And now I wonder… Continue reading

The power of a Community

David I.Just saw the David Intersimone’s post SourceForge announces winners of Fourth Annual Community Choice Awards mentioning that “The best open source project for enterprise was Firebird SQL and stressing that Firebird has its roots in Interbase, one of the Embarcadero‘s products.

Also, David (as well as other Embarcadero insiders) stated enough times already that they will support Firebird in their upcoming products (where applicable), including their flagship product, RAD Studio.

Also, David states that “We look forward to a great future working closely with the Firebird community.”

I think that this is an historic post. It makes… Continue reading