[Lazarus] Please define "delphi compatibility"

Malcolm Buckingham mjb at admagres.com
Thu Oct 4 12:17:26 CEST 2012

> > It would be interesting to know what percentage of 
> programmers using 
> > Lazarus are developing cross platform software. Unfortunately I 
> > suspect that answers obtained via this list would be skewed 
> towards multi-platform.
> However, I think that you're confusing "cross platform" with 
> "not using Delphi's supported platform(s)". My own suspicion 
> is that far more people are targeting a single platform 
> (Linux, BSD, potentially Android
> etc.) than are seriously trying to make sure that their code 
> runs on a collection of different OSes and CPUs (with 
> different word size, endianness and alignment requirements).

I'm sure you are correct when you say that many people are writing for a
single platform. If I had to write for Linux then Lazarus would be my first
choice. The software I write is usually for controlling scientific hardware
and then processing the data obtained. Some of the core software tends to be
low level and difficult to write in an OS independent way. Things like
shared memory, USB drivers, etc. Not impossible to write but definitely more
work. Once you instrument control software is Windows based then any other
data processing software has to run on Windows as well.

I've seen other companies working in this area supporting both Windows and
Linux only to discover that 95% of the installations were for Windows but
customer support issues were about 50/50. In the end they dropped Linux
support. This is nothing to do with which OS is the best, but if most of
your customers are wedded to Windows then supporting Linux is a lot of work
for very little gain.

On the other hand things may change in the future. If Tablets really take
off in business then maybe there will be a more even split between Windows,
Android and Apple. Then having a cross-platform development would make a lot
of sense.


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