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.