Prism: official Delphi language comes to Visual Studio

Embarcadero is to release Delphi for .NET as a Visual Studio add-on, called Prism. Marco Cantu has a summary. Note that according to this post, which is based on an announcement statement by product manager Nick Hodges at the SDN conference near Amsterdam, there will be:

full support for the .NET framework 3.5 (WinForms, WFP, Silverlight, ASP.NET, WCF, LINQ) … CodeGear will provide Datasnap 2009 integration and dbExpress for ADO.NET support

It looks as if this will be a full alternative language for .NET developers. Note that many of the language changes, such as generics, in the Win32 version of Delphi 2009 seemed to have .NET compatibility in mind. It makes sense for Embarcadero to use Visual Studio to host .NET development tools, just as it uses Eclipse for Java.

There remains an awkward question. What advantage is there in using Delphi (a version of Pascal) rather than C# for .NET development? If this is aimed only at existing Delphi developers migrating code, it will only ever be a niche.

Not good news for RemObjects Oxygene, which is also an Object Pascal add-on for Visual Studio; but Oxygene has some other tricks like Mono support, for running on Linux, which may sustain it.*

I am trying to clarify a couple of points. To what extent, if at all, will Prism support the .NET version of Delphi’s VCL (Visual Component Library), which would not fit smoothly with the Visual Studio design tools? Even if VCL.NET applications work, you would probably be better off using Delphi’s own IDE for them. Code ported from Win32 Delphi will likely use the VCL, so this is tough to get right. And what is the future of Delphi for .NET in RAD Studio? I will update this post when I know more.

*Comments below suggest that this is in fact Oxygene rebadged; I won’t say more until I’ve got official confirmation.

7 thoughts on “Prism: official Delphi language comes to Visual Studio”

  1. Just to clarify (as I was the one who introduced the “confusion”) there was not a formal product announcement, Nick just announced some future plans… I’ve updated by blog post to clarify.

  2. Yeah, my thought would be why Delphi.NET inside studio rather than Oxygene/Chrome?

  3. From the rumors out of Embarcadero and RemObjects it seems that Prism = Oxygene + Datasnap + dbExpress.

  4. If you have followed Marc Hoffmans blog posts at all and read from his subtle hints it looks like Embarcadero has partnered with Rem Objects and that the “Delphi Visual Studio Plugin” will in fact be Oxygene.

  5. Or RemObjects is licensing some of it’s technology to CodeGear. Happens all the time. But I have admit, it does seem like a nice idea if RemObjects becomes part of Codegear as long as Codegear doesn’t shut down Remobjects other offerings (Data abstract, Hydra, the n-tier RemObjects stuff…).

  6. It sounds great about having RemObjects part of CodeGear/E as well as would have been having some others too (AtoZ etc…), would create m-pot for some great solutions in the future…


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