- And it had come to pass that the Sons of Kahn were, to make no bones about it, being flogged off.
- For the Borland Leadership Team had looked upon the works of the Sons of Kahn, and had posed a question unto them.
- And the question of the Borland Leadership Team was this: In what respect does your input enhance the four phase application lifecycle management delivery system threshold holistic architecture initiative deployment validation baseline best practice success driver?
- But the Sons of Kahn had answered not.
- Wherefore the Borland Leadership Team conferred one with another. And they spake out, saying: Let's dump the bit twiddlers.
- But in line with the predictions of this column, and despite the psalming of Senior Son of Kahn and occasional correspondent David 'David I' Intersimone, the rush of purchasers cameth not.
They languish in anguish
- So the Sons of Kahn languishèd in the Valley of the Scotts.
- And while they languishèd, it was observed that some changes fell upon them.
- For it was noticed that the Sons of Kahn were openly using Subversion (like nearly everybody else in the world except Linus) rather than dogfooding Borland's StarTeam.
- And this was considered significant. For it is wisely written in the Book of SourceSafe: if the owners of a VCS use not their software, thou hast to be as mad as a foaming, rabid dog to entrust it with thine own code.
- Then the Sons of Kahn started doing techy-friendly things to their products, like not changing the .dcu format every upgrade, and putting a bit of Unicode into Delphi, which is about bloody time, and even fixing up poor old C++ Builder so that it worked better with VCL.
- (For although a fixed up C++ Builder is not ideal, it surely compares favourably with MFC for making Win32 apps, yea even with the updated Scribble demo with 'fluent ribbon interface and enhanced discoverability'.)
- And a lot less was said about .NET, to the extent that a shiny new 'roadmap' omitted it, and concentrated on Win32. And it was wondered if .NET stuff was going to be 'kylixed'.
- For the verb 'to kylix' meaneth 'very slightly deemphasise with extreme prejudice'.
- Such were the changes in the behaviour of the Sons of Kahn, as they languishèd. And although they did release Blackfish SQL, the Little Database That Nobody Much Wanted, it was generally thought that they had finally put aside the eccentricities of the past and turned a corner.
Return of the Users of Delphi
- Then it happened that the Users of Delphi marched down into the Valley of the Scotts for one last time.
- And their number was diminished from days of yore (and indeed of mye), and they were not in top fettle.
- But nonetheless they sang a song as they came. And here is their song, which had a familiar Winehouse-ish lilt:
They tried to make me go to VisBas
I said no no no,
I know it's .NET but they can't make me forget
That it's slow slow slow,
I won't brook delay, and if Nick Hodges says ok,
I'll stick with Delphi 7 for the mo mo mo.
Chorus: Pint of Tanqueray shandy with a cocaine top please barman.
- And the Users of Delphi cried out to the Sons of Kahn saying: What news? We see you are putting a bit of Unicode in. About bloody time.
- But the Sons of Kahn replied, saying: Very exciting news, actually. We finally have a buyer. Embarcadero.
- Then the Users of Delphi revealed their ignorance, saying: Encheladoramawhat?
- Wherefore the Sons of Kahn elaborated, saying: They are makers of high end database development tools for drawing entity relationship diagrams, and change management and the like.
- And the Users of Delphi spoke a word these days only regularly used by the Microsoft marketing department, saying: Cool.
- Then the Users of Delphi asked: How much didya go for?
- And the Sons of Kahn mumbled: Two thirds of a mess of pottage.
- (Readers will recall that a US mess of pottage is approximately 0.51 of a British mess of pottage, without commission.)
- Then the Users of Delphi exclaimed: How much? Is that all? You should have asked. We could have had a whip round.
- Then the Sons of Kahn said: No, you don't understand. The money is of no importance. It is much more than going from being owned by one maker of high end tools to another maker of high end tools. It is a symbiotic catalytic mutually beneficial arrangement that implies milk and honey and pottage all round. Let us explain.
- For it is written in the apocrypha of that prophet: It doth harm thou not that thou hast another string to thy bow, especially if that string be a modern cross-platform language, which garnereth a mighty hoard of search hits on all the job websites.
Personal note: all Linux users smell of poo.
I admit this is not in fact my experience; but the circulation manager suggested I stuck it in after the frenzy successfully generated last month when I implied Ubuntu may not be perfect. Actually my idea was to write 'Crystal Reports is a wonderful product', but I was inhibited in this plan by my own recollections of using Crystal and by a teeny shard of innate honesty to which I am a martyr. ®