Delphi is currently ranked as the 10th most popular language (Dec 2008) and has approximately 1.75 million users worldwide.

So why were there so few people at the CodeRage III virtual conference put on last week by Embardero?

I really enjoyed the sessions I was at, but many were attended by fewer than 100 people. Even Marco Cantu's talks only had about 220 attendees.

I was personally very disappointed by the attendance, which I thought should have been in the thousands.

Why weren't you there?

What should the organizers do to get you there next year?


I attended only one session (on product quality), but that is because I am not interested in Delphi. We have used C++Builder for many years, and there were a total of two or three sessions (including the quality one) that touched C++Builder.

If there were more sessions on C++Builder topics, I would have certainly participated more heavily.

Kris Kumler
+13  A: 

Several reasons, in no special order:

  • I'd heard about CodeRage, but didn't hear it was a virtual conference. When you're in Europe, you're well used to the fact that most conferences and informal usergroup meetings happen in the US - or, if you're really lucky, somewhere else in Europe. In practice, this means that when I hear about a Delphi conference, I tune it out.

  • What proportion of Delphi users are in Europe? Without having hard numbers, you can be sure it's pretty high - consider how many popular 3rd-party component vendors are European. But I understand the sessions were scheduled for US timezones, effectively shutting out European and Asian participants.

  • Held too soon after product release? Delphi 2009 has been out for a couple of months, barely, so the penetration of the new release is probably relatively small.

  • Sour grapes syndrome? As Borland before, now CodeGear goes to great lengths to make sure as few people buy Delphi as possible - not just by setting an uncompetitve price, but primarily by forcing non-US customers to buy from local resellers, who charge huge premiums for no added value. I'm only a hobbyist, but I would have paid Borland's price for the Professional version, if I could buy it online. I will never make a free gift of two or three hundred Euro to the local reseller though - who has a practical monopoly on the market, since no reseller is allowed to ship abroad. (To add insult to injury, the reseller doesn't even take online orders: you are supposed to fax your order form to them - chew on that for a while...) So I will wait instead until I can buy a shrink-wrapped copy for a fair price on eBay, as I did with Delphi 2007, or ask a friend traveling to the US to pick one for me.

Although holding a virtual conference soon after a product release does seem like a good idea. It's a way to introduce folks to the new features. The recorded, download-able C++Builder 2009 webinars have been very useful.
Kris Kumler
Also, I hear you on the time, and was only three hours off of theirs. I'm in EST (UTC-5:00) and I wasn't about to stay up till 23:00 for some of those. If the recorded sessions were available much sooner, I could see it work easier for folks around the globe.
Kris Kumler
Hey, we have the same problem with Microsoft resellers - they multiply the price by 1.5 before selling.
Dmitri Nesteruk
For the record -- we started the sessions at 0600 in the morning so that folks in Europe could see them live.
Nick Hodges
+24  A: 

I think a lot of interested people couldn't spare the time to attend during working hours. The replays are what they will look for and I am sure there will be many times more downloads in the days after they come out than people acutally attending during the sessions. We should judge the success of Coderage 2008 including these download numbers.

+16  A: 

Why wasn't I at what?

I'm a student, and would be interested in any sort of new programming environment or language features, but Code Rage three? Is that a game?

A conference for enraged Delphi 7 users?
lol. Never went for 7, it was straight 6 to 2006/2007
Delphi has been around since about 1995, so probably shouldn't be considered a "new programming environment". That's not intended as a criticism, it's the main language I used in my first fulltime programming job, and I really enjoyed it.
+4  A: 

Perhaps it's because Delphi is NOT the 8th most popular language! It's all statistics, and using Stackoverflow, I make it 11th most popular with a measly 1.8%. Don't get me wrong, I'm a Delphi developer, and would love Delphi to be up in the top 3, with conferences like Coderage having 1000s of attendees, but right now, that isn't the case.

Two different surveys. One says #8. One says #11. That's pretty consistent. Even in 11th place, you can't dispute that there are a lot of Delphi programmers out there, So my question still remains why were there not more at the conference?
+1  A: 
  • Never heard of Code Rage before
  • Delphi is no longer cool... at least, none of the large IT companies I know of use it
Dmitri Nesteruk
Most large IT companies stick to Microsoft, Oracle and (ugh!) SAP. Delphi is in use by lots of small companies and ISVs, especially in Europe and the Russian states. By your definition, is SAP cool?
SAP is boring. But compared to C#, how can anyone find Delphi cool? To each his own, I guess...
Dmitri Nesteruk
+2  A: 

Easy answer: I have work to do.

Then why spend your time on Stackoverflow? The answer is the same as for going to a conference: Because you learn things that will and save you time in your work and allow you to do your work better.
Ditto. Too much work. I'll replay most of the sessions when I have some time, though.
@lkessler: I can spend time on stackoverflow because:1. I can read it using an rss feed2. It takes only minutes, even if I write a reply3. I can look at it and reply when I have time, not when whatever event is scheduled.all that is not true fuer coderage
+3  A: 

I attended a few sessions (including the ones I presented) but not all of the ones I wanted to (some were opposite my sessions even!) I was planning to catch the replays. I imagine some other people might be in the same boat.

Jim McKeeth
+2  A: 

Well, the timing was rather unfortunate for me this year. Translated to my time zone the sessions ran from 2 pm to 3 am. Most of the sessions I was particularly interested in (and there were quite a few of those) ran either while I was driving home from work or having dinner with my family or in the middle of the night. I'm really looking forward to the replays though I would have loved to catch more of them live (I did tune in for a couple of sessions but apart from one which I didn't manage to watch to the end because it was so damn late, it weren't the ones I was really interested in).

I think it was a pity that the replays weren't immediately available like they were last year. That way I would have been able to catch up with them during the following day.

Oliver Giesen

First three reasons which come to mind:

  1. Never heard of it.
  2. As much as I enjoyed Delphi in the early 2000s, I haven't used it in ages.
  3. Last I heard, Delphi was a Windows-only product. I don't do Windows. (I was very optimistic when Borland released Kylix, but it seemed to disappear pretty quickly.)

Or I suppose I could just turn the question around... Why weren't you at YAPC::EU?

Dave Sherohman
Agree with 2. and 3. I do Windows, but I don't want to spend more effort on stuff that is Windows only.
The very latest (from the Code Rage III Closing Keynote) was that Embarcadero listed Mac/Linux as first on the list of their research initiatives for Delphi. I am thinking that might be their next release following their release of 64 bit next year.
Having dropped cash on Kylix which turned out a major train-wreck, having watched the wxWidgets-based C++ Builder version die silently as well - I'll wait for something at least as good as the free wxWidgets until I'll pay again for it.
+9  A: 

I used to love coding in Delphi, but:

  • the only free version of Delphi is Turbo Delphi Explorer 2006, which:
    • is a bit old
    • requires .NET Framework 1.x, in despite of the fact that it can be made independent of any version of .NET Framework (with some limitions in the capabilities of the IDE) or can work just fine with .NET Framework 2.0+
    • it seems to be treated as a bad idea which should not be allowed to exist anymore
  • the competition has:
    • free up-to-date versions (Visual Studio 2008 Express editions)
    • 90 days trials (not 14 or 30 days like Delphi)
    • much lower prices: Turbo Delphi Professional 2006 is the least expensive, includes only one language but is more expensive than Visual Studio 2008 Standard which includes 4
  • Delphi 8 was unusable, Delphi 2005 wasn't worth his price, Delphi 2006 managed to be allmost ok and after that I switched to C#

IMHO, the marketing managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Unless they decide to offer free upgrade to Delphi 2009 for all the customers of Delphi 8 or greater, in which case it might regain it user base.

Well I have to agree with you there. The period between Delphi 7 and Delphi 2007 was very unstable. I had Delphi 4 which was great, and I waited until Delphi 2009 and when Embarcadero looked like they were really to go full force with Delphi before I upgraded.
+1 on the totally messed up ratio between price and capability.
Delphi 4 great? You must have had a special version!
With Delphi 4, I could produce a full Windows program easily as a single EXE file that was small and ran extremely fast and it could build all my modules at lightning speed. It was more than I could ask for 10 years ago. Compare that to Visual Basic and the VBRun DLLs you had to distribute. Ugh!
Or compare Delphi 4 with 2005 or 2006, you would be crying to go back to 4, the new features and possibilities don't cover for the buggy IDE.
Delphi 2005 was buggy and was annoying. Delphi 2006 was rock-solid. Delphi 2007 switched to MS Build and added Vista support and is my primary IDE. I can't vouch for Delphi 2009 (bc I haven't used it), but 2007 has been solid and awesome.
I'm happy for you concept03, but it took too much time to achieve that stability: Delphi 8 with 3 updates, Delphi 2005 with 3 updates, and Delphi 2006 also needed 2 updates to work as expected.
2006 rock-solid? You *can't* have been using the same 2006 I had, the one that crashed frequently, didn't play well with other programs, scrawled red squiggly lines all over my units, took 2 minutes to do trivial tasks and leaked hundreds of MBs of ram. What Delphi 2006 do you have?
Mason Wheeler
@Mason Wheeler - Well, I had BDS 2006. I also installed DelphiSpeedup and DDevExtensions. Maybe that helped my situation. I ran it on a desktop with 4GB RAM and Windows XP. My version was always up to date with patches.
@aleandrul - you are probably right. It was likely the fact that I had a constantly patched Delphi 2006 installation. If I remember right, they already had 1 major update out before I even got my copy.
+1  A: 

I saw there were a lot of interesting sessions, but I really didn't have the time. I will watch most of them when I can download them. Looking really forward to it. So my guess is that the Coderage III sessions eventually will have a lot more viewers.

+4  A: 

I attended sessions when other responsibilities allowed, but am relying on the replays, which should be available next week.

It's interesting that a common theme here is that people didn't hear about it. I think CodeGear needs to work on getting the word out. Particularly for their physical conference, hopefully some time in 2009.

Bruce McGee
+1  A: 

I was mildly interested in the conference topics, but figured that I'd watch the replays when I had time.

Adding to the comments about having to buy at the local reseller... The Brazilian reseller beats the euro reseller easily - now they accept your order online... And then e-mail you a PDF with a license that you have to print, sign and snail mail to them - they won't even accept faxes.

I had already ordered and was ready to pay, but lost interest at that point. I doubt I was the only one.

BTW, when I bought BDS 2007, the package came directly from the US. Clearly, the local reseller has no practical purpose.

If I could just buy and download from the regular US Codegear store, I'd have bought it on pre-order.

+3  A: 

I found it very tedious to sign up for sessions (too many checkboxes) so I decided to watch the replays later on and not "attend" CodeRage.

+7  A: 

There aren't any free t-shirts and drinks at a virtual conference.

That's true. Virtual t-shirts and virtual drinks just don't cut it.
...but virtual t-shirts don't make you look like a geek.

I fail to see the purpose of attending a virtual-conference in real time.

People go to real conference for the networking. During the talks, they're all on their laptops anyway doing other stuff.

If the replays are good and free and preferably transcribed, they could be useful in the long run.

That's a good answer. Except for the fact that if everyone felt that way, then there wouldn't be any virtual conferences and as a result, will be no presentations for everyone to replay.
My guess is that this "virtual conference" was organized and paid for by the vendor, and that speakers were compensated or at least endorsed. In many ways a virtual conference is essentially like an on-demand-video anyway.
I can confirm that the speakers weren't paid in any way; but they didn't have any travel costs either. Also, there were live IM conversations while the presentations were playing, so you actually got the conversational feel of a real conference.
+2  A: 

I would love to have participated, but this year it was simply at a very inconvenient time. It came right in the middle of a very busy period for me, and as I'm self-employed and a 'single-developer', there was no way I could attend the live sessions and still get my (paying) jobs done at the same time.

In many ways, the 'solid week' format actually makes it quite hard for people like me to join in. If it were spaced over a couple of weeks, say Mondays and Tuesdays for a couple of weeks, it would be much easier for me to make the time and join in. But invariably there is something interesting on each day of the event, and in the current economic climate it's incredibly hard to shut down the office for most of the day, for much of a week.

I'll be making good use of the downloads, as I did for the previous 2 events.

Are people walking away from Delphi? Sure, developers who want to write in something else are walking away.

But from where I'm sat there are companies out there who just want reliable solutions in good time, and Delphi is an excellent tool.

Delphi has been dying for over a decade now, apparently. :-)

+2  A: 

I found the conference to be a little too much. It wasn't that I was extremely busy or wasn't interested, but it looked like real time waster. Little bits of useful info intertwined with periods of nothing.

I started downloading the interesting videos today and will watch them on my time. If I find them boring, I simply skip it and watch something else.

BTW - I refuse to buy Delphi from the local (South African) agents. Give me a way to purchase BDS2009 online and I will buy it today.

YES - the local South African agents are a bunch of sharks
Charles Faiga
+1  A: 

Frankly, I am just tired of listening to CodeGear guys' refrains. Although Delphi is still one of the best tools to build rich GUI native applications, it suffer from the many ways CodeGear devised in the past five years to get in the way. Too busy to get past them. After Delphi 2006 I decided I would look at products only - even if they let you very little time to test them - talks are just talks and nothing more.

+3  A: 

I prefer to watch the replays.

+2  A: 

i'm loyal delphi user and have been an avid coderage attendee. last year i attended or listened to nearly every delphi presentation.

i didn't attend because the registration & notification system was so poor this year.

let me explain.

the registration page also listed only "rooms" and times (not subjects). result: the registration page isn't very useful because the actual names of the sessions weren't on the registration page so i'd need to remember day 2, event X on room Y and go to the registration page.

it should all be in one place:

title, date, time, room, presenter, etc. REGISTER FOR THIS hyperlink.

the reminder e-mails from codegear contained no mention of which webinar it was. it should also contain the title & author.

the lack of this information meant it was too much trouble to register and attend even one event this year.

if i'm typical, attendance will be better if:

  • registration information is all present beside a "register now" link.

  • the reminder e-mails include which event i'm being reminded about.

it's not so much work for codegear to marry the event title together with the actual event day, room, time, etc...

last year's code rage was much more "accessible" because the registration page actually had the titles...

some may think i'm lazy. if it's too much work to register & attend, i won't bother.

i'm hoping to listen to the replays. hopefully they are listed by subject instead of the room, day, and event #!


I was busy working and then attending TechDays in in Calgary, AB. Why that instead of CodeRage? Well first of all, where I work, we stopped using Delphi and converted to C#.NET 2 years ago. At that time, due to Borland's mismanagement of the company and poor marketing of Delphi, no viable argument for continuing to use Delphi could be made, and qualified resources were becoming scarce.

Now, the latest open source projects and architectural practices are coming out for .NET, not for Delphi. Ever seen an IOCP socket server in Delphi? How 'bout an IOC container? Does CodeGear even encourage the use of patterns in their frameworks (there's no MVP, Composite Application Framework, etc.). A lot of this comes for free with .NET, so if you can put up with the size and speed issues, .NET is the way to go. Until Delphi Prism, CodeGear did not have a viable, complete .NET solution. Hopefully it's not too late to keep the language alive.

Indy 10 supercore was going to have IOCP support beside fibers. But it stayed as experimental. For Delphi 2009 version it was completely abandoned. But there is a new independent implementation of IOCP socket :
+1  A: 

The email link and invitation thing was too much. I was hoping that once I registered, I will be able to just go ahead and click on a calendar that will take me to the session. I got like 20 emails plus remainders, email is not time accurate, so when I click on to join the session, most of the times it was over or too late.

Then when I went to try to jump to another session, I needed to go and look through all the emails to find the session that should be playing at that moment, so I can click on the link.

Probably there was an easier way, but I couldnt find it. :(

+1  A: 

I had registered for CodeRage III but timing problems prevented me from attending it.

One more thing was that I had to install an Extra Software in my stable system just to attend CodeRage. That is absurd.

CodeGear people should have use something else for the Virtual Conference... some thing which would run without having to install a plethora of unwanted files and in turn making system unstable and unusable ;)

Yogi Yang

+2  A: 

I did join last years CodeRage, but not this one. Reasons mostly mentioned before:

  • Very inconvenient and unnecessary registration process.
  • Many sessions at inconvenient times for a European.
  • Other work to do.

Now let's compare watching sessions live vs watching later.


  • You can ask questions.
  • You are 'forced' to drop other work at hand, meaning you are less likely to never watch the presentations you were interested in.


  • You can watch at any convenient moment.
  • You can pause to do something else, fast forward to skip boring parts, go back to see something you missed or was shown to fast by the presenter.

To me, the advantages of delayed viewing far outweigh thos of live viewing.

+1  A: 

Delphi is currently ranked as the 8th most popular language (Nov 2008) and has approximately 1.75 million users worldwide.

For starters, this is a dubious statistic. They may have had 1.75 million sales, but that's not the same thing at all.

So why were there so few people at the CodeRage III virtual conference put on last week by Embardero?

  1. The vast majority of users of any language never attend any sort of conference.

  2. There is no overwhelming reason to "attend" a virtual conference in real time.

  3. Delphi is nowhere near as popular as it once was (and the other languages CodeGear support have never been as big a deal as Delphi). The sad fact is that Delphi's time has been and gone. Once it was unequivocally the best way to develop apps for Windows. Now it isn't, and all the smartest people who do the most interesting things have moved on.

The Delphi community has faded right away. There used to be at least 3 English language magazines (I wrote for one occasionally). Now there are none. Any remaining user groups are pale shadows of their former selves. There just isn't the buzz there used to be, so even getting the message out to current users is a bit tricky.

Contrast that with the .NET community and all the stuff going on there, or the Ruby or Python or even functional programming communities.

And look at jobs - this morning there are 92 Delphi jobs on, and over 2100 for C#.

Basically, it comes down to Delphi's time having been and gone.

Just because C# is popular doesn't mean it's good-quality. Delphi is still unequivocally the best way to develop for Windows. What ruined the Delphi installed base was inept management and marketing by Borland. We can only hope that's a thing of the past now.
Mason Wheeler
+1  A: 
  1. Registration inconvenience and unfriendly schedule/registration list (I ended up registering for everything just because it was simpler to do so).
  2. Unpractical schedule times for a European.
  3. Most of the sessions were just of no interest (to me), or sounded too short for too complex a subject to provide much value.
  4. Connection issues. On the few sessions I was actually interested in AND had half-decent schedule time, I couldn't get in.
  5. Decided to wait for downloadable delayed versions to emerge.
+3  A: 

I have read most of the previous responses. Sounds like a lot of whiners to me. Some folks can't see the purpose behind a virtual session.

It gets folks TALKING is what it does. Is it as good as a face-to-face? On some fronts, no, on others, yes. The speaker isn't interrupted with coughs, etc., has time to tweak the presentation (since I believe that they are all pre-recorded CAMTASIA or equivalent which is good) and can concentrate solely on responding to questions during the presentation, etc.

Others are complaining there is no "swag". Aaawwwww, poor baby. Engineering conferences are NOT about "free stuff", they are about ENGINEERING (wonder of wonders)! Marco offered a nice discount on his book for the duration of the conference. Others could (and maybe did, I couldn't attend the entire thing) have offered free "somethings" to go along with all the hard work and what not that they spent in preparing for this conference (oh, wait - that WAS their free gift - the preparation and sharing of their knowledge!). I for one have enough coffee mugs, mouse pads, etc. to last my lifetime.

It would, however, have been nice to see a list of whatever "swag" was going to be offered during the conference as a "teaser" to get people like the above materialist to show up (I attended because I wanted to, the book discount was just a nice bonus).

I do agree that the registration/participation process needs improvement. What would have been nice was a set of links in the Blogs and the DNG that just said "click here to attend current session - which is " along with a link to one page that had all the links and the same button that would take you to the desired active session.

Although I am a US developer, I agree that some consideration should be made for our European friends. Perhaps to run the conference in three weeks instead of just one. Each day would be "played" at a different 8 hour segment of the day each week (e.g. the first Monday 0800-1600, the second Monday 1600-2400, the third Monday 0000-0800) to correspond (somewhat) to the appropriate timezone. I would also like to see each "day" as a four vice eight hour segment - I can justify a half-day watching my computer much easier than a full day.

Perhaps instead of the above, push the sessions on three consecutive days - say 0800-1200 on one day, 1600-2000 the next day and 0000-1400 the next. Makes it tough on the providers as they have to be there three times to answer questions but hey, this is only once a year and if CodeGear wants Delphi to "come back" they need to do everything possible to encourage use of Delphi - especially here in the States.

As a quick example, Dice shows me 85 positions for C#, 0 (yes, that's a zero) for Delphi (and yes, I know about the relative inaccuracy of such a comparison but just look at the raw numbers - almost a hundred (and at Christmas time yet!) to zero. ZERO! CodeGear, you REALLY need to FIX THIS! Send out a team to each city and work the companies (not just the big ones, but the little ones, too), something, anything to get Delphi BACK - I am SICK of C# and all the workarounds they had to do to keep from paying CodeGear royalties for things Anders,, already invented for Delphi (look for 'em, they're there).

Like many others I tried to participate in the live sessions but "real" work kept getting in the way and I am looking forward to downloading the replays (IF it ever WORKS! - I get blank pages so far) and enjoying them then.

I have already bought Marco's book (Thanks Marco for the discount - been a paying fan since your book on D1!)

Haven't checked yet but CodeGear might also set up a CodeRage user forum and allow folks to post their questions there. Ensure that the providers all agree to watch the forum for say 30 days after the event and answer promptly so that folks will be encouraged to ask their questions. The more satisfied engineers you have, the more they will push management to use Delphi.

I am in a position right now that I develop in Delphi for my home projects but, unfortunately, C# pays the bills right now. I HATE that and want, desperately to get back to Delphi development for a company! Not going to happen out here in Arizona anytime that I can see but, I have been a loyal Borland/Inprise/CodeGear/Embarcadero customer for some 23 years now (ever since TurboPascal 3.02a to be precise) and don't intend to stop unless Delphi goes under (don't DO that!).

In short, I was at the conference as best as I could be an am looking forward to whatever they do next!

--- Original Answer by Fred Weller ---


Time constraints. Just too much to do atm. Will want to pick and choose from the recordings, though.

Lars Fosdal

It's a simple choice for me:

  • I'll wait for the recordings, It seems easier, and you can skip any boring parts.
  • I know a lot about Delphi, I don't think there will be much new stuff.

Registration / sign-up clunkiness (not made simpler by yet another company change)
Technical problems (no audio) on the streaming software
Too early starting for this night-owl left-coaster
I was sick half the week
Unfortunate timing (not Embarcadero's fault) of some of the key sessions I wanted to participate in.

THAT SAID, the post-event videos are definitely be on my to-watch list. : )


I did not understand how to subscribe to the conference/install more software that is difficult to remove...


Easy answers: -- much more convenient to download sessions later and watch at my own convenience (which I've been doing). -- Plus, I can re-watch sections that were confusing or need more study. All in all, that's much more valuable than live Q & A. -- Watching later means I can skip through boring, uninteresting or inapplicable sections of presentations -- connecting via Live Meeting is always a mess! Missing software pieces, bad sound or no sound, quirky requirements. The suggestion to test in advance of the conference didn't work. -- registration pages didn't give session names!!!! -- Eventually, mucking around you could find an actual agenda with topic names, but this was unconnected to the registration. -- I speak only English, so it's cluttered to figure out which sessions are in a language I understand. I thought for a while that two columns were English and non-English, but no. -- Reminder e-mail messages didn't give session descriptions -- Even when found, the agenda descriptions were very terse. Mostly it was guessing what a session was about from a cryptic title. As a result of those cryptic descriptions, it is much easier to download later, see what it is then, and jettison if it's not something I can use -- much better than constantly scheduling for sessions only to find out they're not useful to me.