Back from Delphi Developer Days (Kudos to Marco and Cary) and after cleaning up the mess in my inbox I would like to share some thought I had during one of the sessions named “Delphi: Today and Tomorrow”.
Some of the attendants mentioned they were still working with older Delphi versions and even if the newer versions were laying around they refused to make the step migrating their applications to the current Delphi XE. One argument from a fellow developer working still with Delphi 2007 actually alerted myself as he rated the step from Delphi 2007 to Delphi 2009 a very big one regarding the Unicode migration, but the step from Delphi 2010 to Delphi XE seems rather small, which makes himself unsure wether to make the migration to Delphi XE now or wait for the next version to come.
Honestly, I don’t get that. There already is a large step from Delphi 2007 to Delphi XE. Why making it even larger? What about “divide and conquer”? Do you really expect the migration to XE2 being easier than that to XE?
The big step, at least for some of us, may indeed be from Delphi 2007 to Delphi 2009. For myself it was merely waiting for the third party libraries to keep up or to replace some of them with those currently supported (OK, that has been some work). The steps to Delphi 2010 and Delphi XE were simply opening the project, compile and start using the new features.
Since migrating to Delphi 2009 I have been able to make use of all the new and exciting features that made it into the product since then. My code and my coding has improved a lot. I learned a whole bunch of new technologies and new techniques that makes my programming life easier. Staying with Delphi 2007 would have been a huge loss of time. Time to work with new technologies and gain experience.
When Delphi XE2 will be delivered I can concentrate on what is new in that version. I am eager to make my applications compile for the Mac (remembers me that I have to buy one before). I can’t even imagine to bother with Unicode, Generics and Anonymous Methods at that time.
IMHO not keeping up with the current Delphi is similar to not using version control, only the other way round. While using version control allows you to revert to a previous version of your application easily, staying up-to-date with your Delphi version allows you to create the future versions of your applications much easier.