We had a very nice event yesterday in Piacenza, with 100 Delphi developers (from Italy, plus a few from Switzerland and one from Germany) taking part in the 5th Delphi Day. This is an event for Delphi developers organized in Italy by my company, Wintech Italia Srl, with the help of CodeGear. As I mentioned while announcing the event, we had Pawel Glowacki of CodeGear who gave us an overview of what the Delphi family (Delphi Win32 and Delphi for PHP) has to offer in terms of AJAX-based web development. Next Pietro Brambati of Microsoft Italy offered a very nice overview of what's new in Vista for developers and what's going along with WPF, Silverlight, and the like. It was a very nice overview. I'm still quite confused about the too many alternativces Microsoft is promoting at the same time... maybe I'll figure out a little better.

After that I presented a Delphi for Win32 talk covering:

  • the speed of compiled code and of the FastMM4 memory manager
  • the native VCL support for Vista in Delphi 2007
  • the new features in the VCL and its role
  • how to handle Google Maps in a Win32 program (I'll have to blog about this, as it complements what Steve Trefethen is showing on his blog)
  • and, most of all, why there is still a future for native Windows applications, so we don't really need to move to .NET, particularly for standalone and client/server applications

Virutal Nick In the afternoon we had a presentation of three Italian CodeGear Technical partners, Ethea, EurekaLog, and my own company. I know the good quality of Ethea tool, while I was favorably surprised by EurekaLog. Yes, it does provide stack traces on exceptions, as any other tools. But the way it does the reporting, integrates with server side bug managements tools, and the overall developer and user experience is really great. Well done, Fabio. I updated attendees on my company Delphi offerings (we do sell the product, but focus on training and consulting) and announced my new book on Delphi 2007 and a new company support service we are organizing.

After that we had Nick Hodges (over a video Skype connection, as you can see in the image) talking about plans. He said the full road map is a few days away, and that Unicode is a top priority for the VCL / Win32 side of Delphi. I'm now really curious to see the full document and see the reactions (which will be partially negative, whatever they plan.) That was it for the day. We'll have pictures online later today, I'll provide a link.

Installing the Delphi 2007 Update 1: As an aside, I'm not been able to update my copy of Delphi 2007. I deleted the install files, forgot the DVD at home, downloading the small installer got the "Runtime error in setup script: Line 1668: Attempting to get value of undefined variable PROD_KEY1"... hope to have more luck with the DVD! I see many people have reported this and other errors... hope a fix in on the way.

Update:  The images of the event have been loaded and are visible at this link. I've added one above with me and Pawel video-talking to Nick...