This is a short report of the Delphi event that took place in Piacenza last Thursday. I haven't posted it earlier because I went to Hamburg for the Delphi Tage event (a report will come to this blog), spent the weekend there, didn't want to spend a fortune for Internet connectivity, relaxed, and stayed offline for a few days).

The 2009 edition of the Italian Delphi Day was the 8th of the series and one of the smoothest and best attended. The conference hotel in Piacenza (my home town) saw a gathering of 120 Delphi developers, up from the 100 people of the last few editions. Despite the hectic schedule, speakers were very good in timing their sessions, and we managed to deliver a lot of information to the attendees in a single day.

You can find a good number of pictures of the event on Adrea Magni's Picasa site, at Here is the crowd, a couple of other images will follow -- hopefully they'll work from within the blog):

The first session was a "state of the art" keynote by David I, of Embarcadero Technologies. He covered the status of the company (the new owner of Delphi, since the event last year) and its the commercial offering, but delved also in the Delphi Roadmap announced recently (at the San Jose conference, as covered by this blog), demononstrated gesture support in a Delphi Weaver application and also the new Firebird native dbExpress driver. This is the first time this was shown in public, as far as I know.

Next there was an interesting session on the new Windows 7 APIs by Pietro Brambati of Microsoft Italia. He was very clear in telling the the future at the operating system level remains tied to the native C/C++ APIs, with .NET providing a layer on top of them. A lot of new services, like the new DirectX surfaces, used to be part of .NET only, and will now become available to us native developers ("us" meaning Delphi and C++ developers). The same is true for some of the WCF features for SAOP support.

I followed with a session highlighting some of the features of Delphi 2009, like advanced usage of generics and anonymous methods, along with Unicode, VCL improvements, and DataSnap 2009. After that I covered a few of my Delphi REST clients (see last week posts), and some more technical info from the San Jose conference preview sessions. After that, we had a nice lunch.

The afternoon was arranged with 8 short sessions focused on different Delphi components and tools, in two parallel tracks (a DB track and a generic one). It was a sort of a whirlwind, but most attendees seemed to like it. We had a final Q&A session, gave away a few freebies, and that was it.

The next morning, I repeated the "Status of Delphi" talk with a slight different (less technical) emphasis to the GO Conference, a gathering of 50 developers and resellers involved in an accounting and managament open source project written in Delphi, specific for the Italian market (at least for now!).