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The Sons of Kahn and the assembly language of the internet

C# hath become a lonely path. And the Beast hath shut its gates against us

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Stob Editor's Note: Verity Stob's Chronicles of Delphi [King James ed.] began in 1996. The most recent translations can be found here: The Sons of Kahn and the Pascal spring and here: Sons of Kahn: The Apocrypha.

Zany adventures with Zarco and Marco

  1. And the users of Delphi had become old with the passage of years, and had taken to sensible shoes, and elasticated jeans, and cosy Saturday evenings in with BBC4.
  2. For their grizzled pates did sparkle in the morning sunshine, like the surface of that glittery sandstone stuff that one sometimes notices in rocks by the seaside.
  3. Yet still the users of Delphi turned out Windows code that was not so dusty, and demanded no runtime, and could fetch its backside off the disk and be begging for input before certain alternatives could so much as put up a 'Please wait' dialog.
  4. And if a few users of Delphi had turned their hands to writing JavaScript-that-is-the-assembly-language-of-the-internet, then most had not followed these filthy traitors into the perverse ways of the curly bracket.
  5. For it is well-known that JavaScript is the most perverse of all the perverse curly-bracket languages, that causes its users to cry Wat! and despair.

The release of XE3

  1. Then the season came for Sons of Kahn, that now lived at the place of Embarkingmadifyouaskmedero, to show a new version of Delphi.
  2. So the users of Delphi called out unto the Sons of Kahn, saying: Should we once more joyfully entangle ourselves in the never-ending thread of perpetual upgrade? Is it to be a good one this year?
  3. And the marketing department of the Sons of Kahn stepped forward, saying, Fall down upon the ground and worship, for we have some commandments for you writ on tablets of stone, explaining the benefits of XE3.
  4. Then the users of Delphi muttered one unto another, saying: uh-oh.

The $a commandments

  1. Thou shalt no longer produce iOS apps, for the toolchain based on Free Pascal is withdrawn, yet the new ARM compiler based on LLVM is not ready. And the iPhone and the iPad are forbidden unto thee. Be thou grateful thou hast still the Mac.
  2. Thou shalt also forget about Android, for the time being.
  3. Thou shalt not produce the 'Metro' app that getteth up the noses of Windows 8 users which have not the magic touch. And this is not a matter of taste or policy, but because the beast of Redmond hath so decreed it.
  4. Yet thou shalt instead produce 'Metropolitan' apps, which looketh and feeleth like 'Metro' apps but which are really but Win32 apps, and runneth not on the Surface.
  5. And when thou installest a Metropolitan app, thou shalt also cause an extra foreground task to be autostarted all the days of its life. Yea, and also a service task to be installed. So a Metropolitan app shall be twice blessed: not just a kludge, but also a faff.
  6. Thou shalt wait in humble prayer while the Delphi IDE loads. For the new copy protection requires that each DLL shalt be counted twice, and this takes as long as it would. But expensive versions of Delphi shalt be loaded more slowly than cheaper versions of Delphi. So the more thou dost pay, the longer thou shalt wait.
  7. Thou shalt not use in thy code globals such as LongDateFormat and TwoDigitYearCenturyWindow. For these have long been deprecated, and verily we say unto you it is bad practice and not thread safe. Did thou thingst thou wert programming in VB or what?
  8. Thou shalt gird thy loins for the coming of the LLVM compiler, for thou shalt hear rumours that it shall subtlety differ from the Pascal that hath gone before. And the code that thou hast writ may be as poison to the new parser. But how the new syntax will differ is for us to know and you to find out, unless thou signest the beta NDA with the blood to thy first born child.
  9. Thou shalt remember that the product that first was called Delphi for PHP (but was not Delphi but rather mostly about writing JavaScript-that-is-the-assembly-language-of-the-internet), and that then was called RadPHP (but was still mostly JavaScript-that-is-the-assembly-language-of-the-internet), is now called HTML5 Builder (but still supporteth PHP and of course writing JavaScript-that-is-the-assembly-language-of-the-internet) - even though, at the time of chiselling, the mighty Wikipedia had not caught up with this. Because it is written that there is nothing like multiple baffling changes of poorly chosen name to bring success to an underperforming product.
  10. Thou shalt not write client/server applications in Delphi Pro, not even with libraries of the third party, nor with devious calls unto ADO. Thou shalt instead shell out thy dollars to upgrade to a proper Enterprise-level version. We shall have no cheapskates in the sight of Embaracadero... Wait. Why art thou looking at me like that? Haha, that was just a joke. We were but tugging thy tentacle, oh yes, just pulling your paw. There are but nine commandments. Forget that last one. It did happen not.

Reaction to the commandments

  1. At that, the users of Delphi replied saying: a simple 'no' would have sufficed.
  2. So the Sons of Kahn fell silent while they read back up the transcript, to discover what was the manner of question that the users of Delphi had asked, that the answer was 'no'.
  3. And the reader may choose to do the same.
  4. But when the Sons of Kahn looked up, the users of Delphi had departed that place, and they were alone

Concordance of the Users of Delphi

  1. Then the users of Delphi did gather together in private, to decide what should be done.
  2. And some said that they should consult the scribe Zarco that is chained to the About.com blog and has written a worthy-but-slightly-dull article about Delphi programming every four days for the last 3,000 years. For they reasoned that this Zarco must by now know everything there is to know about Delphi, plus also one wierd (sic) old tip to lose 10lbs of belly-fat in 7 days.
  3. But others said: Dost thou not mean Marco? He hath gone over to the Sons of Khan. And so nothing came of that idea.
  4. Then the users of Delphi parleyed among themselves. And some were for adopting tools such as Smart Mobile Studio and Elevate Web Builder which taketh Pascal and compile it to filthy JavaScript-that-is-the-assembly-language-of-the-internet.
  5. Yet others demurred, saying: why don't we cast in our lot with the Oxygene crowd? They offer a well-designed Pascal dialect that targets Windows .NET and Android/Java, with iOS in beta.
  6. Then other others joined in, saying: Perhaps we should finally follow the great prophet Anders into the belly of the Beast, and learn ourselves C#?

The voice of C#

  1. Whereupon a still, small voice was heard. And they looked around, and they did see that it was a C# user.
  2. And it said: I am a self-confessed C# user, and I follow the ways of .NET. And I do counsel that you follow me not.
  3. For C# hath become a lonely path. And the Beast hath shut its gates against us, and hath broken our Silverlight into a million smithereens, and feedeth us alive to Herb Sutter and STL and the rest of the slavering C++ 11 crowd.
  4. And we liketh it not.
  5. And, what is worst, Anders hath deserted us, and toileth no longer on C# improvements.
  6. Now when the users of Delphi did hear this, they did rejoice.
  7. And they cried out with loud voices, saying: Huzzah! Anders returneth unto us! He has put aside the scourge of the curly bracket, and is coming home to Pascal, to lead us into the paths of self-righteousness. Let us party as though it were once more 1999!
  8. But the C# user spoke up, and he said: One moment. Restrain thou thine equine quadrupeds.
  9. For Anders returneth not to Pascal. On the contrary. He now labours upon TypeScript, which is an idiomatically compatible superset of filthy JavaScript-that-is-the-assembly-language-of-the-internet.
  10. And the users of Delphi replied to this, and they said: Ah.

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