Tuesday, 30 March 2010

The Delphi Overflow Doc Wiki Initiative

A couple of days ago, I was reading Jim Mckeeth’s blog post about setting up a Delphi documentation wiki. Now while I admire Jim’s drive and determination about anything Delphi, and I like his idea, there’s one sentence I don’t agree with.

”At first I was thinking Embarcadero could hire a tech writer to copy edit the content from the questions into the Wiki, but that is just passing the buck.”

Any why shouldn’t Embarcadero properly document their own product? They are the ones making money from Delphi, aren’t they? I’m all for community input, but that shouldn’t let Embarcadero shirk their responsibilities. I guess Jim, like many others has just given up ever getting decent documentation, and taken matters into his own hands.

Hand’s up those who have given up on the F1 key when working in the Delphi IDE?

6 comments:

Birger Jansen said...

Raises hand...

The help system is a joke. How can it be that Embarcadero can get away with this?

Anonymous said...

The sad thing is that the documentation is still worse than it was in D7. The other day i was trying to refresh my memory about some datasetprovider or clientdataset method and the method wasn't documented in D2010 help, but was documented in D7 help. The method and its parameters haven't changed, so i can't understand why it's not documented in newer version.
I think that good documentation is more important than Unicode, 64bit, cross platform...

Anonymous said...

Codegear seems to have given up on providing good and descent documentation for Delphi.

Most stable and usable help till date is of D7.

When I see such luke warm response from CG on documentation I remember the partner/founder of Ionic Wind Software (http://www.ionicwind.com/). This guy has written two very good languages but it is almost always asking for money every now and then. I have to say that this has stopped for last 3 years in his case but in case of CG they seem to be only interested in customers money and nothing else.

You know the best part. Almost all Delphi developers complain about documentation and help but I have never heard or read that any developer has stopped using Delphi because of this one crucial reason.

Anonymous said...

In fact... we don't have a good documentation... also we don't have new training materials... so how can Embarcadero attract new users? Only old version users still using Delphi to start new projects...

Anonymous said...

I was thinking seriously about buying Delphi but not now.
Most Delphi links on the web are dead, occupied by domain sitters or have not been updated for years. I did a quick unscientific poll of the embarcadero groups and the average duration since registration is 9 years.
The level of activity there is low and yet the site is soo slow.
There's no new blood. For books Marco Cantu is the only show in town and now has to self publish.
I tried out Delphi and the help is confusing I seemed to get a lot of references to Visual studio stuff, it was more like using a poor search engine than anything else.
I've looked at the old stuff on the web. There was a buzz about Delphi a decade or more ago when P Kahn was in charge. There doesn't seem to be any spark about the crew there now, maybe it's because they've grown old. They seem to think like it's the world's job to find them and not the other way around.
The high price, the lack of active discussion groups, the crappy confusing Delphi site, the convoluted purchasing process, the differing pricing for different markets, the lack of online teaching material from Delphi, the poor help system, the lack of new books, why on God's earth would anyone new EVER try Delphi?
Delphi is shrinking all the time. The move to new smaller offices is not a good sign. Still as long as the wheels stay on a few more years they'll all be at retirement age as will most of their users

Anonymous said...

Hand’s up those who have given up on Delphi?