User type: Administrator
Date: Dec. 16, 2006, 4:55 p.m.
Pascal has always been a great language to begin learning programming in, many excellent programmers today actually grew up in “Turbo Pascal”, which was a free variant of “Borland Pascal” at the time, I grew up programming in Turbo Pascal myself years ago.
Turbo Pascal then became Delphi. Delphi is actually still the Pascal programming language under the hood, with an easy to use visual interface and excellent set of libraries, to quickly develop Windows programs in.
Over the years, Delphi had matured a lot, and upto Delphi 6, there had always been a free “Personal Edition” available, for hobbyist programmers to learn in. The only drawback with the free version is that you were not allowed to sell your software… for that you had to then get the commercial version of Delphi, but this was ok for hobbyists that would give away their software for free, or just wanted to learn.
So Delphi was a great educational tool, many polytechnics used it for teaching in, unfortunately as of Delphi 7 onwards, Borland stopped releasing the free version of Delphi. Now since then, some restructuring has taken place inside Borland:
The commercial version of Delphi will now be released under the new company: CodeGear.
A NEW, FREE version of Delphi is now been made available again, under the name “Turbo Explorer”, using the old “Turbo” name again, as a tribute to how so many programmers learned programming using Turbo Pascal years ago.
Turbo Explorer consists of:
- Turbo Delphi for Win32
- Turbo Delphi for .NET
- Turbo C++ Explorer
- Turbo C# Explorer
Once again, Delphi has been made available free for hobbyist programmers to learn in, the only catch being, you can only install one of the above per one computer, so choose wisely. I would recommend either Delphi for Win32 or Delphi for .NET, depending on if you want to develop standard Windows programs or .NET programs, .NET programs require the .NET framework installed to run your programs off course, while Win32 programs run natively as is. Personally I prefer the standard Delphi for Win32 version, but .NET has it's advantages too.
Since then, I am now developing in other programming languages, primarily under Linux, but at the moment that doesn't stop me from downloading “Turbo Delphi for Win32”, to still have a look at. For anyone wanting to learn programming, I highly recommend Delphi (preferably the Win32 version to begin with) as a first programming language to learn in. To make it easier, there are even some tutorial videos in flash to get you started.
Turbo Delphi Videos: http://blogs.borland.com/nickhodges/articles/26687.aspx
Turbo Delphi Download: http://turboexplorer.com/downloads
Once you learn one programming language, learning another is easy. Great programmers, often learn a handful of languages, not just the one. Pascal/Delphi is a great beginner language, then after a few years, say 2-3, move upto another language, such as Java, C++ or C#. Learning programming takes years to master, but then so does any other trade. Programming is one of those things you have to have passion for, the best programmers are usually the ones that enjoy what they do.
Note: the above tutorial videos are an excellent resource. If you want to learn Turbo Delphi, I highly recommend going through the lot. By the time you watched these videos, you should have a fair idea, when it comes to writing Delphi programs.
- Turbo Delphi for Win32