Manuel Lopez started using Delphi in 1997. He presented a showcase entry (A Fantastic Portrait Program From Craps Dice Is Made With Delphi) into the Delphi 26th Showcase Challenge and we talked to him about his Delphi mastery. More of his application Portraits With Craps on his website.
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When did you start using RAD Studio/Delphi and have long have you been using it?
I started using Delphi from the version, which was presented in 1995 in Orlando, Florida, at the Borland conference at that time. Over time I used versions 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7, the latter being the best in my opinion. There were new versions but I did not test them. I got funding for an academic project and bought the Seattle version. Without a doubt, the development and evolution of Delphi represents an extraordinary work. Being able to program with practically the same code for Linux, Mac Os, Pc and Android makes it, in my opinion, one of the best RAD development tools. I had the opportunity to go to more than one Borland convention. There I met David I, one of Delphi’s most enthusiastic programmers. Later, I even had the opportunity to interview Anders Heilsberg, the creator of Turbo Pascal and the Delphi compiler.
What was it like building software before you had RAD Studio/Delphi?
The idea of visual and non-visual components makes programming much more effective. The fact of dedicating more to solving the problem that we have already using components that do the routine tasks, is without a doubt one of the most attractive things about Delphi. In addition, for years Delphi has maintained the open source philosophy and there is a lot of source code, components and tools, which can be used very easily. For my PhD thesis I developed a program that uses a series of open source components that solves a significant number of problems for the results I needed to obtain.
How did RAD Studio/Delphi help you create your showcase application?
Portraits using Craps is a program that creates images with dice. In May 2020, I wrote about a dice image created by cyber artist Barbara Lynn Helman. Apparently the creator put the dice according to the shade of gray that she visually found in each bit of the image. The photographs he submitted seem to indicate this. However, visually making a box made with dice like this would have been too complicated a task and probably too easy to make mistakes. I want to assume that Barbara used some program that told her which die to put in which position. This would be, in any case, the smart way to do this task. So I wrote a program that precisely generates images with dice, like the ones Miss Lynn Herman does. In fact, the program is a modified version of other software that I wrote (for a Digital Image Processing university course), which allows making images with halftones, which seeks to simulate shades of gray for printing black and white photographs (see Computer Graphics. Principles and Practice in C, James D. Foley, Andries van Dam, Steven K. Feiner, John F. Hughes, Addison-Wesley, 1995; chapter 13.1.2 Halftone Approximation). I quickly got a program that generated the final images, putting virtual dice (dice images), instead of putting real dice on a flat surface.
What made RAD Studio/Delphi stand out from other options?
I think that Delphi was my first choice because I had started with Turbo Pascal from a very young age and I simply continued with the improvements that Delphi offered, which at first could be considered as “Turbo Pascal for Windows”. I never really thought of other options. Delphi already gave advantages with the graphical interface and the visual components.
What made you happiest about working with RAD Studio/Delphi?
Its visual components, the huge library of third-party components, the possibility of accessing the source code, and the speed of compilation. All of these factors seem fundamental to me in my decision to use and continue to use Delphi.
What have you been able to achieve through using RAD Studio/Delphi to create your showcase application?
I think cyber artist Barbara Lynn Helman did some interesting graphic work using dice to create her images. However, she wanted to give the impression that the creation of her dice images of her was done manually. Thinking that this can be easily solved with an app, I programmed it thinking that Miss Lynn Helman actually uses some software for it. In any case the credit for the original idea goes to Barbara Lynn Helman. Therefore, being able to replicate the work of Lynn Helman, which is achieved with a Delphi program, demonstrates the ability of the programming language to solve these types of tasks.
What are some future plans for your showcase application?
576 / 5000 Resultados de traducción One possibility for the application of images with dice is to be able to change the type of objects that can be used to create images. For example, one of the simplest ideas is to add dominoes or playing cards. There are many possibilities in that regard. I have the impression that there are many other artists to “help” with this type of program, for example, Ken Knowlton (https://www.kenknowlton.com/)
Thank you, Manuel! The showcase entry for his software can be found below.