Nick Hodges

Fun Phone Calls with Delphi Prism

05 Mar

I was talking with a customer yesterday.  It was a pretty typical conversation – they have a big investment in Delphi, with hundreds of thousands of lines of code.  They had built a major application for a major business using DataSnap and dbGo (formerly ADOExpress).  They had started to build some new web systems with C#, and were trying to figure out where to go next with their existing code base.

Phone calls like this are really fun now.  You know why?  Delphi Prism, that’s why.  These guys were looking at renewing their RAD Studio Software Assurance, and so they have full access to Delphi Prism.  They were using C#, but when they started hearing about what Prism could do for them, they were quite interested.  They loved the notion of being able to write ASP.NET applications that talk to their DataSnap servers, and they loved the notion of being able to use Delphi syntax for all of their .Net needs.

And Delphi Prism can do that.  It can meet all of your .Net needs.  The Delphi Prism team at RemObjects have done an incredible job with the language.  You give up absolutely nothing if you choose Delphi Prism with the Oxygene language, and you gain a lot over competing languages.  Prism was designed from the ground up with .Net in mind.  There is nothing in the .Net world the Oxygene language can’t do. And there is a lot in the language that other .Net languages can’t doLINQ, Generics, Anonymous methods, delegates, attributes, futures, nullable types, sets, anonymous types – its all there.  And the cool part is that the language keeps moving forward, with powerful new features like direct support for Aspect Oriented Programming and Expression types.  And all with our beloved begin…end and the rest of the familiar Delphi syntax.  You want to build a Silverlight application?  No problem.  Need to develop for Linux with Mono?  The Mac?  We have you covered.  Want to develop with Prism /on/ the Mac and /on/ Linux? We’ll have you covered there, too, with the next release.  You give up nothing and gain a lot.  Wait, I already said that.  But I guess it bears repeating.

But the team is not resting on their laurels – they are pressing forward.  The upcoming release will support the new Visual Studio 2010. It will be integrated into the MonoDevelop platform.  It will provide full language support for the .Net 4.0 platform, including support for dynamic language structures, expression types, a cool new Extension Method syntax, and more.  (And while they are at it, they’ve even developed a Delphi-based .Net Scripting tool.  And it’s free, too. How cool is that?)  

It’s not overstating the case to say that Prism is out in front of the pack with regard to supporting .Net.  Have I mentioned that you give up nothing and gain a lot if you use Prism?

If you haven’t given Delphi Prism a look, you should.  You can download a trial and give it a whirl. You can peruse the documentation online.  Need information on how to get started?  Check out the Prism Primer.

P.S.  The team that brings you Delphi Prism also develops powerful Delphi tools like DataAbstract and the RemObjects SDK.  well worth a look.  RemObjects is also moving into the area of Mac/OS X development.  Nothing seems to stop moving with those guys, and everything moves in a very cool direction. 

6 Responses to “Fun Phone Calls with Delphi Prism”

  1. 1
    yves Says:

    "they loved the notion of being able to use Delphi syntax"

    Well, sort of, if you summarize Delphi as being "if, then, begin, end".

    But you know that you can not simple use your legacy delphi code in prism since the object instantiation syntax is different.

    So yes, you can calm managers telling "prism supports delphi", (and get them signing your cheque) but you won’t be able to convince developers, since they can not reuse their delphi code at the end…

  2. 2
    Nick Hodges Says:

    Yves –

    I never claimed that, and I explained very clearly the distinction between the two products.

  3. 3
    Joe Says:

    I use Developer Express VCL stuff and Report Builder which are for Delphi for Windows only.
    DevEx has a great .NET toolbox too but it’s not compatible with the VCL version. Is it certified for Prism?
    To my knowledge Report Builder is not available for Prism. Prism doesn’t seem to be an option


  4. 4
    Holger Flick Says:

    @Joe: Certification… well, is it certified for F#? It is not. Why? Because .NET is language-agnostic. Just a few things are reserved to C# and VB.NET in the VS IDE, but that is because Microsoft chose to do so — not because of incompatibility.

    Prism is a full class citizen in the .NET world. Just like F# or any other managed language for the framework. Thus, using Prism with Developer Express is very much possible. I use it with the Winforms control set for example. I cannot say anything about ASP.NET as I do not use that at the moment.

    @Nick: Great posting and I would like to point out the brilliance of DataAbstract and RemObjects SDK. They are pure jewels to be found in the programming world (I wish I had found them years ago…) and I only noticed them about 2 months ago. I am just in the process of writing a windows user interface and it makes heavy use of DataAbstract in order to publish the data for clients to consume over the net. The clients can be Windows, Mac or - now the best part - iPhones! I will definitely blog about these experiences soon…

  5. 5
    Vince Says:

    Strange that you cannot download a trial of Delphi Prism Professional but only Delphi Prism Enterprise which is three times the price.

  6. 6
    arni Says:

    Great to see you guys pushing Prism.
    I mostly use C++ and C# now, since that’s what my employer uses.

    Reading through somebody else’s huge C# codebase often leaves me yearning for Prism or Delphi and their separation of interface/implementation.

    If I’ll ever in the position to choose my tools, I’ll switch back to Delphi.

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