This is my plea to Embarcadero for Delphi future.
I’m not asking to release everything under GPL, only to release VCL and the as much as possible of the IDE under a dual license schema.
What is the biggest single problem for Delphi wide adoption today? In my opinion the lack of community. When I started to using Delphi, (Delphi 1.0 in 1995) there was a huge community from Turbo Pascal days, now that community of young passionate future developers has grow in professionals that spread the word of Delphi in every company they worked.
But if I look now to the main Italian Delphi newsgroups, they are frequented mostly by professionals, with everyday problems to solve. And that’s ok, but where is the future in this?
The words GPL has still a little of its marketing magic (and a very cheap one), so maybe it can attract again the kids, as I was in 1995 (ouch this hurts!).
I don’t think that in 2008 any serious firm could consider using a GPL product with the idea of breaking the license. And if they were ready to do it they surely won’t pay any license whatever.
As things are now, Delphi could have a not so bad future as niche product, but IMHO this is the only way to revive to ancient glorious days.
For a different opinion and much more details about the acquisition, I keep an eye on Marco Cantu’s Blog.