Sunday, February 26, 2006

Friday, February 24, 2006

.NET Rocks TV

Cool, one of my favorite podcasts, ".NET Rocks", is now complemented by its own videocast ".NET Rocks TV". Some topics such as "Databinding in .NET 2.0" or "ASP.NET Webcontrols" simply require screen captures for through understanding. Video downloads are available via BitTorrent.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Borland Dumps Delphi And JBuilder

In other news, and somehow connected to my previous posting: Borland bows out of the IDE business altogether. So it's farewell to Delphi and JBuilder. Reminds me that I heard that a local software vendor was about to revamp its flagship product using Delphi.NET. I considered that a weird choice back then, and it looks even worse today.

Well, it also makes me wonder what will be left of Borland. IDEs are a commodity today (see Eclipse or NetBeans), and even Microsoft is giving away Visual Studio 2005 Express Edition for free. Borland's press release states that they are going to concentrate on Application Lifecycle Management Solutions instead. Good idea after all, as many decision makers in large corporations enjoy buying this kind of stuff for hundreds of thousands of dollars (just to find out later they are trapped in a typical vendor-lockin, so no way to get rid of it even when there are better suited solutions available at a fraction of the original costs).

I still remember the good old days of Turbo Pascal under CP/M and DOS. Turbo Pascal was unbeatable at the time, both in compiler speed and IDE featureset and usability. That was the time when Borland was about the same size as Microsoft, and Philippe Kahn's success in developer tools really bothered Bill Gates (see the "Delete Philippe"- and "Stick it to Philippe"-incidents). The story goes that Bill Gates even dated Kahn's ex-wife... oh well.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Java Studio Creator

Over the last ten years, I have worked with a couple of Java IDEs, namely (in consecutive order):

For one reason or another and although it had been one my radar for quite a while, it wasn't until some weeks ago that I took a closer look at Sun's NetBeans platform resp. Sun Java Studio Creator, which is built on top of NetBeans. And what I have seen so far is quite astonishing.

Great toolset, lots of RAD features, refactoring, J2EE at a breeze (Java Server Faces come to full strength with this IDE). Creator's main focus lies in the web development area, but NetBeans and Creator also include the best Java rich client UI designer I have ever seen, namely Matisse. As a sidenote, with Creator I really have hopes for the return of Swing for desktop applications. I was always very fond of the Swing API, and the native Look&Feels have gotten much better over the years. Swing always was brandmarked as being slow, which might have been true when it was introduced - but believe me, if it feels clunky today, that's the fault of the application programmer.

For a quick intro you might want to check out Java Studio Creator 2 in Action. And by the way, Sun gives away Creator for free!