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Re: Borland Layoffs?


2003-12-28 01:45:27 AM
delphi268
On 27-Dec-03, Rain Bo said:
Quote
and some, when they can no longer muster that patience, leave TeamB.
;-)
Yes, and it is a further testament to their patience, that so few do
leave.
--
Bill
--------
"You can not keep on doing things the old way and still get the benefits
of the new way." -- Thomas Sowell
 
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

On 26-Dec-03, Nick Hodges (TeamB) said:
Quote
You are wrong that I don't pay for software. I get TeamB copies, but
I pay for the partner program, which involves getting more copies for
our developers.

I +do+ pay for software from Borland.
As so many things have been (mis)construed from what I *did* say, most
of them inferring what I did *not* say (nor intend), I will simply
offer you my apology, and depart this thread, before any further
misunderstanding is developed from my words.
--
Bill
--------
"You can not keep on doing things the old way and still get the benefits
of the new way." -- Thomas Sowell
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

On 26-Dec-03, David Intersimone said:
Quote
This is an amazingly unfair statement. Nick and others on Team B
spend a lot of their own time on the newsgroups helping all of our
customers. How much is their time worth? it is precious. We give
them the software because they 1) help test it, 2) help support it,
3) write articles about it, 4) give presentations on it, 5) give
valuable feedback to our teams, 6) provide examples and snippets, and
more.
Please read agin what I said. I spoke of "people's perceptions", not of
my own views. Moreover, no disrespect was intended, nor implied, to
Nick, nor to any other member of TeamB, past or present. I am well
aware of the time and energy spent by TeamB members in support of
Borland products, and of the users of those products.
As I said in my last post to Nick, I am sorry if anyone took from my
post any insult or disrespect to him or to TeamB. Since even you have
found cause to attack the messenger, I am retiring from this thread.
--
Bill
--------
"You can not keep on doing things the old way and still get the benefits
of the new way." -- Thomas Sowell
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

Pavel Vozenilek writes:
Quote
"Olivier Beltrami" <obeltrami at wanadoo dot fr>writes:


>>If you feel this bad as a Delphi developer, how do you think the C++
>>Builder developers feel?
>
>What exactly happened with C++Builder ? I thought you guys had a brand-new
>multi-platform version ?
>

The brand-new multiplatform version is so far lacking backward
compatibility, VCL support, RAD, CodeInsight, .... It is shipped with
pre-beta new compiler and pre-beta GUI painter.

In the meantime: chances of old bugs in BCB 6 getting fixed are next to
zero.

Not exactly the way how to build trust and customer loyality, IMHO.
/Pavel


Pavel,
Thank you.
I was too stunned to reply. If Olivier's response was indicative of how
most Delphi developers view the new CBX product, no wonder their still
complacent...
David Erbas-White
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

Olivier Beltrami writes:
Quote
>The brand-new multiplatform version is so far lacking backward
>compatibility, VCL support, RAD, CodeInsight, .... It is shipped with
>pre-beta new compiler and pre-beta GUI painter.


Wow !
How can it be C++Builder without VCL and RAD ?
You mean they finally released BC++6.0 after all these years ?

Olivier


It ISN'T C++ Builder. The (very lame, IMHO) excuse was that
'contractual obligations require them to keep "Builder" in the product'.
David Erbas-White
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

"David Intersimone \(Borland\)" <XXXX@XXXXX.COM>writes:
Quote
In my 18.5+ years at Borland we have never abandoned our core of developers.
You might find some of us who are holding the BCB bag disagreeing.
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

Wayne Niddery [TeamB] writes:
Quote
Olivier Beltrami writes:

>I think Borland is spreading itself too thin in areas where its
>expertise does not lie. All these purchases reming me of the early
>90's (DBase, Quattro Pro, ...). Borland has always mad great
>programming tools, but the record when trying to enter different
>markets is not so good.


Apples and oranges. Dbase, Quattro, etc were a completely *different* market
than compilers and IDEs with practically no overlap in customer base. ALM
tools *compliment* Delphi, JBuilder, etc and make these tools *more* usable
and more valuable. The customer base is *strongly* overlapped and will
contribute to increasing the customer base for all of these tools.

You need to understand that this is literally the opposite of your stated
perception - if Borland were to *not* embrace and make a name for themselves
in the area of ALM tools they would very quickly be left behind by (at
least) IBM and MS and be relegated as strictly a niche player - if they
could survive at all. Not only are ALM tools important for *all* developers,
they are key to ensuring continued and increasing success for Borland -
which is the *only* way for your to be able to continue getting new versions
of Delphi into the future.

Let's turn the question around.
If all of these ALM tools were so 'necessary' to (for example) Delphi
developers, wouldn't it be in Borland's best interest to take their
existing base of Delphi customers and 'convince them' of the necessity
of using those tools? After all, Delphi users are great evangelists,
and if you can sell them on the 'need' for ALM tools, they would be a
great boon towards spreading the word, would they not?
From some of the comments made here in this forum (and others), it
appears that some attempt was made to do this at the last BorCon, but it
also seems that the response of the Delphi developers was to 'tune out'
during those portions of the presentations, while waiting to hear the
'meat and potatoes' part that they were really interested in.
So, let's hear from some Delphi developers that are actually using some
of Borland's ALM tools. What will they give the small developer that is
worth spending the thousands of dollars that those tools cost?
I would point out, by the way, that (IMHO) the reason some of these
tools are so pricey is because the market for them is relatively
limited. In other words, the cost/benefit for using them really only
works for a larger corporation, thus fewer companies buy them, thus the
per-unit cost is higher. Conversely, the per-unit cost being higher is
what has drawn Borland into this marketplace. But to argue that these
tool benefit the small developer, without giving a strong and valid
argument for the cost/benefit analysis as it affects the small
developer, seems a bit facetious. And as stated, it would seem that if
the small Delphi developer shops were using these tools, you would hear
them (loud and strong!) proclaiming the need to use these tools.
David Erbas-White
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

David Erbas-White writes:
Quote
What will they give the small developer that is
worth spending the thousands of dollars that those tools cost?
I can not see small developers any more - all I can see is the corporate
developer... :-/
--
Ben
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

"Wayne Niddery [TeamB]" <XXXX@XXXXX.COM>writes
Quote
The potential market of developers willing to pay only a few $100, or at
least less than $1000 is only so big, and they would have to throw in a
ton
of added value to sway a significant portion of that over to Borland.
There
is simply not enough money in it *by itself* - but as part of an overall
market is well worth keeping and growing.
Out of interest, I wonder if anyone knows how many copies of Turbo Pascal
1.0 were sold? Huge numbers, I'd think. So if you sold Turbo C# (or
whatever you want to call it) for $100 a throw, what's the basis for saying
that there simply isn't enough money in it. Would be interesting to know
those figures....
You hit the nail on the head when you say that Borland would need to throw
in a ton of added value. The problem is that Borland don't seem willing to
do that. Yes, they can go out and buy other people's code like
TogetherSoft, BoldSoft, etc, but the technical vision and drive to do
high-quality in-house innovation of their own does not seem to be there any
more.
Quote
>Nah - Borland *think* that in order to grow and stay healthy, they
>must run after the enterprise level,

This is simply a fact.
Are you agreeing with me? :-) Or are you still asserting that Borland can't
stay healthy unless they target the corporate marketplace? A 'fact' that I
certainly don't see as self-evident.
Quote
If you really think their competitive advantages are dissappearing in the
tools area then how do you figure they can make sufficient money focusing
primarily on small developers?
I think it should be obvious that many of the competitive advantages of
Delphi/BCB over (say) Visual C++ and MFC have been significantly eroded by
the advent of .NET. VS.NET is a true RAD development tool from Microsoft,
C# eliminates much of the klunkiness of C++ while providing an all-new
language which (like OP) has built in support for RAD features such as
properties and methods. The delegate stuff isn't as clean as it could be,
but you can not have everything, I suppose. ;-)
To answer your question, how do I figure Borland can make sufficient money
focusing primarily on small developers? I think there are several answers
to that. To begin with, they could take a leaf from Developer Express'
book. This is a company that has come from virtually nothing to becoming
quite a force to be reckoned with in a very few short years. They did it by
starting off with VCL components, then diversifying into ActiveX controls,
and finally .NET components. it is no secret that they are working on a new
version of CodeRush for VS.NET. Developer Express have managed to grow, and
to maintain a high level of profitability, and they have done it without
being diverted into cross-platform cul-de-sacs, and without thinking that
they have got to start pandering to the "enterprise level". All of their
stuff is equally relevant and (key point) equally *attractive* whether
you're a single developer working from home, or whether you're the sort of
customer that Inprise tried (and failed) to woo.
Quote
You can not have it both ways Dave. What you
are clearly saying and should be realizing is that it is getting *much
harder* to make and keep a competitive advantage in this area, i.e. it
costs
much more money and time to do it and they must correspondingly make more
in
order to pay for it.
Yes, but there is this little thing called economies of scale. Question:
Why do you think that companies such as Developer Express, Raize, etc, have
been so successful? Answer: Because the VCL components that Borland supply
with Delphi are less than spectacular. Some of those controls have barely
changed since Delphi 1. Developer Express, Raize, etc, give significant
*added value* and that is why people buy their stuff. it is a really simple
concept actually: sell something worth having, and people will buy it!
Radical, eh? :-) There are several reasons why TurboPower went down the
pan, but at the end of the day, if they had been more profitable, the parent
company would not have pulled the plug. The reason they weren't that
profitable is because sales were poor. Sales were poor because most of
their components looked like refugees from Windows 3.1.
What's this got to do with economies of scale? Simply that the more effort
you put into your product, the more value you will add to it, and the bigger
sales will be, thus justifying the initial R&D costs. This is a
business-101 concept that Developer Express understands, but which Borland
seem to have forgotten over the last couple of years.
Quote
Fortunately Borland is already dealing with this - not simply by trying to
serve the .Net market but by investing in and pushing their ALM
solutions -
they have an opportunity here - a window of perhaps a couple of years -
where they can establish themselves in a lucrative area before MS is able
to
offer significant competition. But that market is clearly aimed at larger
customers (although small developers can also benefit greatly from these
tools, it is quite expensive - but there has been some improvement here
already too).
Fine, but the product line needs to be rigorously structured in such a way
that small developers can get their hands on everything that is relevant to
*them* without feeling that they need to buy into the enterprise-level grand
vision. For example, to get the OptimizeIt profiler, you have to shell out
for the Architect edition. Why?
Dave
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

I am their customer too and I don't care about .Net until Longhorn.
I would prefer Borland to continue the next 2 years of strong
Win32 development and support and then start changing gears to
a strong .Net support.
From what I have seen from small shops, they are with me on this.
I don't interact with enough large house to comment, but the one
that does belong to our users group (500 + developers) uses Java.
So they don't care about .Net either.
Derek Davidson writes:
Quote
David Intersimone writes:


>>I'll reserve judgement on Delphi 8 until I try it but I can already tell
>>you that, IMO, it is VERY late. No - I don't mean by Borlands
>>estimates, I mean by reference to the whole dot NET thing.
>
>Very Late to .NET? Not according to Microsoft.


But David, they're not your customer. *I* am.


>The big immediate win is ASP.NET which you can do great
>things with Delphi for .NET.


I was able to do this with C# what, 2 years ago?

--
Thomas Miller
Delphi Client/Server Certified Developer
BSS Accounting & Distribution Software
BSS Enterprise Accounting FrameWork
www.bss-software.com
sourceforge.net/projects/dbexpressplus
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

David Erbas-White writes:
Quote

Let's turn the question around.

If all of these ALM tools were so 'necessary' to (for example) Delphi
developers, wouldn't it be in Borland's best interest to take their
existing base of Delphi customers and 'convince them' of the necessity
of using those tools? After all, Delphi users are great evangelists,
and if you can sell them on the 'need' for ALM tools, they would be a
great boon towards spreading the word, would they not?
The fact you (and any number of others) haven't been sold on any of these
tools hardly means that many others have not. I have personally been using
version control since I have been self-employed (just over 8 years) and most
of that time it has been StarTeam - even before Borland bought it. I own
both ModelMaker and Enterprise Architect and have successfully used both to
help me design my projects.
A very large percentage of developers are *already* sold on such tools which
is exactly why Rational has been popular for many years already and was
recently bought by IBM, and why MS is endeavouring to catch up to and
compete with both IBM and Borland.
Integrating these tools fully into the development tools such as Delphi is
simply the next logical step for Borland and is crucial - it will make
buying Borland development tools *much more* enticing to developers and
corporations alike. Borland (and the others) are already bringing the price
down - these tools ship with the price of Delphi Architect where as before
they would separately cost many $1000s more.
Quote
it
also seems that the response of the Delphi developers was to 'tune
out' during those portions of the presentations, while waiting to
hear the 'meat and potatoes' part that they were really interested in.
Many will continue to do so for some time and some will always - if you do
not see the value such tools offer than you are going to be bored to tears
listening to presentations. I used to do a Delphi "clinic" every month at
the local user's group. For one stretch of weeks I attempted to show how -
and the value of - designing with classes. I did so via a case study and
involved everyone in discussing what classes were needed and what they
should do. Some were right into it, but a couple kept saying "write some
code" - they could not get past simply writing code to make things "work"
and could see no value in all this attention to designing the interactions
between classes.
Quote
What will they give the small developer that
is worth spending the thousands of dollars that those tools cost?
Bottom line: more productivity. It can also often be a selling point when
approaching many customers.
Quote
I would point out, by the way, that (IMHO) the reason some of these
tools are so pricey is because the market for them is relatively
limited. In other words, the cost/benefit for using them really only
works for a larger corporation, thus fewer companies buy them, thus
the per-unit cost is higher. Conversely, the per-unit cost being
higher is
what has drawn Borland into this marketplace. But to argue that these
tool benefit the small developer, without giving a strong and valid
argument for the cost/benefit analysis as it affects the small
developer, seems a bit facetious. And as stated, it would seem that
if
the small Delphi developer shops were using these tools, you would
hear
them (loud and strong!) proclaiming the need to use these tools.
When VCRs first came on the scene, they cost anywhere from $1000 to $1500.
What can you pick them up for now? A basic PC with only a floppy drive could
run $5000, what can $5K get you now and what does an entry-level system run?
Anything relatively new and/or little used commands a large price. If the
ideas behind the product are right, it will gradually come into more use
which drives increased competition which drives down price.
--
Wayne Niddery - Logic Fundamentals, Inc. (www.logicfundamentals.com)
RADBooks: www.logicfundamentals.com/RADBooks.html
"It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by
itself." - Thomas Jefferson
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

"Wayne Niddery [TeamB]" <XXXX@XXXXX.COM>writes
Quote
Integrating these tools fully into the development tools such as Delphi is
simply the next logical step for Borland and is crucial - it will make
buying Borland development tools *much more* enticing to developers
Well said Wayne. As projects gets bigger. ALM is a great way to manage the
details, whether you are a independent single developer or working in a
larger team.
What bugs me is why so many 'small' developers don't see the natural
progression and continue to insist that Borland does not address their
needs. Yes, there should be a Delphi 7 update but from Borland's perspective,
their tools are also used in Corporate environment. Look at JBuilderX and
the seemless ALM integration & benefits. Delphi 8 Architect has some of that
and I hope the whole enchilada gets into the next release too.
Chris
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

Thomas Miller writes:
| I am their customer too and I don't care about .Net until Longhorn.
| I'd prefer Borland to continue the next 2 years of strong
| Win32 development and support and then start changing gears to
| a strong .Net support.
So, apart from the bugfixes for existing W32 products what else do you see
as the features that Borland could add to Delphi that would warrant another
full version?
Doesn't Delphi 7 have enough features? (Apart from more components that is)
Joanna
Consultant Software Engineer
TeamBUG support for UK-BUG
TeamMM support for ModelMaker
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

Chad Z. Hower aka Kudzu writes:
Quote
Language comaptibility with D8.net to allow better single source usage.
I'm pretty sure that will be the objective for the next Win32 compiler
version.
--
Rudy Velthuis (TeamB)
"No one can earn a million dollars honestly."
- William Jennings Bryan (1860-1925)
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

chrisC writes:
Quote
What bugs me is why so many 'small' developers don't see the natural
progression and continue to insist that Borland does not address their
needs.
(being a small developer) I can see the benefits. However, my wallet
insists on insufficient stack size. ;-) We can not always afford these
tools just for the fun of it - there's not always a potent customer
lurking on the doorstep. Sometimes you need to start small, make a small
buck here and there, and eventually can and want to afford the "big
iron".
Re "insist": that sounds as if the "small-time developers" were
stubbornly repeating their mantra. Let me assure you that this is not
quite true. But IMHO Borland is moving away from the "single developer"
towards the corporate users, towards "dotnet for dotcoms" and ditches all
those who develop within a seemingly unrelated job to get tiny lousy
problems solved - sometimes with as little as a couple umpty lines of
code. Of course, we could use WSH and the like, seems to be logical. But
why the heck do we silly idiots stick to Delphi? Because we grew up with
that product. Because we know it just works, without a shitload of
dependencies and clunky installation orgies. I know, this kind of
stubborn loyality doesn't mean anything today, there ain't big money in
it.
--
Ben
 

Re: Borland Layoffs?

Dave Jewell writes:
Quote
"David Intersimone" <XXXX@XXXXX.COM>writes
news:XXXX@XXXXX.COM...

>One of the things that we always tried to do was avoid removing
>features that existed in previous versions.

Like the 'absolute' keyword, for instance? ;-)
<sigh>I'm pretty sure that something like what absolute did is not
possible in managed .NET.
--
Rudy Velthuis (TeamB)
"The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."
-- Albert Einstein