Borland brings back Turbo development tools

Good news on the Delphi front: Borland brings back its Turbo Tools.

I’ve been a loyal Borland tools user for as long as I have been seriously programming. I cut my teeth on Turbo Pascal. I taught myself C with Borland C++ when it was still a DOS-only tool. I programmed SwordSearcher 2.0 with Borland C++ 4, SwordSearcher 3.0 with Borland C++ 5, and SwordSearcher 4 with Delphi 5, 6, 7, 2005, and 2006.

Borland’s early strength, in my view, was its affordable and powerful tools targeted at students and independent developers. They’ve been spending a lot of time, research, and money developing for the “enterprise sector,” which I know has a lot of money in it –- but they’ve lost sight the early developer who wants a platform to code for fun, or as a hobby, or as an independent software vendor. As a result of this, they’ve lost a lot of “new blood” with people going for the free (but not very good) tools, or for the inexpensive Microsoft “lite” platforms.

This is just my opinion, of course. I’ve not looked to research to back up this particular gut estimation of the current state of development tools. But it is where I bring home my bacon, so I think I have some grasp of the situation.

Finally, Borland (or, more likely, the Developer Tools guys at Borland) is doing something to make an effort to get new developers into their camp. Good! I’ve been using Delphi for years. Delphi Developer Studio 2006 is the best Win32 development platform available, period. I want Delphi to prosper so that I can continue using it!

Hopefully this will make Borland’s divestiture of the Devloper Tools group more successful. My read on the DevCo guys (as they are calling themselves) is that they can’t wait to get out from under Borland, which is more focused on management buzzword-ware “application lifecycle management” stuff –- whatever -– than it is on making good development tools. I am looking forward to an unhindered Delphi development team churning out the best IDE for Windows programmers for years to come.

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