During the Chicago Delphi Developer day on April 13th, Embarcadero is having their night time meeting to go over neat new devices as well as getting fed. Last time in Baltimore you were able to see various new techie toys like Google Glass, a brain scanner that could move devices by impulse and other stuff.

If you are going to the Chicago event you can register at http://forms.embarcadero.com/2015DelphiDeveloperDaysMeetup?cid=701G0000000tKU2

Register for Delphi Developers Day 2015 at http://www.delphideveloperdays.com/

At this writing things may change either losing some of these features or gaining a few more with the Microsoft Windows 10 preview release. As always Microsoft will show you a batch of nice features which could be in the final release or if they are truly buggy they will get dropped.

Top features on Windows 10

1. The Desktop

Houston, you have a desktop! Yes, Microsoft finally understood the vital mistake they made by throwing out the desktop which is why people did not drop XP, Vista or Windows 7 to jump to Windows 8. Win10 will fix that by giving the desktop the top priority.

2. The Start menu

Windows 10 returns the Start menu to its rightful spot in the lower left-hand corner of the desktop. Windows 10 Start Menu mixes the Metro Start screen’s functionality, sprinkling Live Tiles of Windows 8-style apps next to shortcuts to more traditional PC software. You can turn off the Live Tile, unpin all the Metro apps or you can choose to have the Start menu expand to the full screen. Freedom of choice is back in action.

3. Metro apps

Windows 10 will launch a Metro app on your PC to a desktop window instead of a full screen which confused a lot of people. The windowed apps have a mouse-friendly toolbar of options across the top, and even alter their interface to best fit the size of the window.

4. Action Center notifications

Notifications with popups reminding you of all sorts of useful information.

5. Cortana

Siri may get jealous while Cortana makes the jump to PCs with Windows 10. Control of the operating system’s search functions, Cortana will attempt to gain access to everything you are doing on the workstation, it may be better suited to a phone or tablet but it will be a cool feature in the beginning until it becomes annoying such as the Microsoft Office 97 smart helpers were let loose. Cortana can help you call a friend, schedule a reminder, set an alarm, check your calendar, compare stocks, and more, all via natural language queries you ask using text or voice commands.

6. Continuum

The Continuum feature will allow the user that enjoyed the quicker touch mode for opening apps will be available so that depending on the device you can dynamically switch the interface between the desktop to a Windows 8 flavor. Depending on the device you are using one will default to either the tile or the desktop.

7. XBox

With Sony PS4 killing XBox ONE and Microsoft investing so much you knew that they wanted to get something for the public to begin thinking about the XBox again. The center point is your Activity Feed, which is populated by your Xbox Live Friends’ activities, such as unlocking an achievement or launching a Twitch stream. The right side of the app lists your friends; selecting one offers options to view their game clips, invite them to a party, send an IM, and more. You can also view your own achievements, manage your profile, and more all right within the app. Eventually, you’ll be able to stream your Xbox One games to a Windows 10 PC or tablet.

8. Settings

Finally they will have Settings coming from the Start Menu instead of moving between screens to get to the Control Panel. This was attempted to be fixed in Windows 8.1 which did solve alot of lost users and hopefully this will be back to normal from the Start Menu.

9. File Explorers Home folder

This feature will present you with a HOME folder that displays the recent used files and folders so you can quickly figure out what you were doing yesterday.

10. Boot to the desktop

Finally they came to their senses instead of the useless start screen which you most likely did not use but swiped to get to the apps screen.

11. Virtual desktops

This feature allows you to see exactly what is opened, their presentation and how fast you can get to it. Almost like Apple, oops did I say that ?

Overall, this is Microsoft getting back on to the best path for the Windows user. By giving it for free they openly say ‘we care about you!’

Microsoft has announced that all Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users will be eligible for a free upgrade to Windows 10 for the first year of its launch. Sorry XP and Vista users you most likely will have to purchase a new machine. This is a good move by Microsoft to show that they are willing to admit that the Windows 8 release was a disaster and it is time to move on.

As always, Microsoft claims on numbers is very loose but they claim that over 650 million people have upgraded to Windows 7 SP1 and 200 million people updated to Windows 8.1 Update which means that they’ll be getting Windows 10 for free.

The Windows 10 release will be a big effort to indicate to the world that the desktop is not dead but quite honestly if you are using an OS such as XP or Vista, you will have to purchase a new machine to handle the Windows 10, do not attempt to upgrade unless you love feeling pain. Most of the hardware on these types of machines will not work with the latest 10.

To this day I still think it is so silly that Windows 9 was not even considered because of the Ballmer mistake which is not the first one but it was the last one that he made (unless you are thinking the LA Clippers are not worth that much money!).

Embarcadero has announced that it acquire Castalia for Delphi and Usertility from TwoDesk Software. Embarcadero will integrate the productivity features of Castalia into RAD Studio’s integrated development environment (IDE) to enhance and optimize the coding experience for both Object Pascal and C++. RAD Studio will also feature Usertility, a powerful and easy to integrate service for monitoring app usage. This acquisition delivers on Embarcadero’s commitment to developer productivity by enabling RAD Studio users to get integrated support for these great third-party solutions, which will be sold and supported by Embarcadero.

Castalia provides the Rad Studio Delphi developer live syntax checking as well as other assorted IDE software tools. Usertility provides drop-in application usage analytics for software written in Delphi, where and how many active users, does the software crash, version information, as well as other stats that a developer needs when going to market to answer those types of questions.

The purchase of these products will close out the two desk software company but will add strong software tools for the developer in the long run.

The Pascal compiler Lazarus has released version 1.2.6 for Windows. The suggestion is to install the 32-bit Windows version due to the instability of the 64-bit version.

Lazarus comes in 2 other flavors, one for Linux and one for Apple OSX. The concept is that you write and use one source code base with only having to recompile on the operating system you are using at the moment which could be Linux, Apple OS or Windows.

You can install Lazarus based on your operating system by going to Sourceforge

Installation procedures

The Windows and Linux installation are pretty straight forward allowing you to remove the previous version or you can maintain multiple versions. That is up to the developer.

The Apple OS needs 3 different files to be installed to have Lazarus to work properly.

You need the Apple Developer tools, which are a part of the XCode development environment. They can be installed from the original Mac OS X installation disks or downloaded from the Apple Developer Connection (ADC), which requires free registration: Apple
As most developers on the Apple platform know that they have to have XCode installed.

To install Lazarus you have to download the following 3 files:
1. fpc – the Compiler, some command line tools, base units and non visual components like database access
2. fpcsrc – the sources of fpc and its packages, needed for code browsing
3. lazarus – the IDE, visual components and help files

Read more information here

Lazarus provides a pretty neat FREE pascal compiler that works on Linux, Apple and Windows, which allows a developer to create one source code base for 3 different Operating Systems.

Vote for you favorite programming languages as well as viewing what others are up to for the year 2014, Click Here

What does a programming language mean in today’s market is vastly different than 10 years ago where in universities you were still learning how to design / develop with a compiler but after you review code2014, you will see that Javascript is a top contender for a language. With that being said, do you think a scripting language is similar to a programming language. The vote is up to you. Remember you can twitter #Code2014 and vote today!

The death of Microsoft Visual Basic 6 has been tremendously exaggerated as the saying goes.  VB6 is still used as of today by developers that find it easy to use and can develop a quick 32 bit Windows application.  The issues that pertain to VB6 are components that are no longer supported since either the vendors have gone out of business or no longer support VB6.

Visual Basic 6.0 (enterprise or professional) was released in 1998 and support was dropped in 2005.  Since then Microsoft has pushed the Visual Basic.NET version that works with various Windows platforms but is extremely different then what the older VB6 Developer was use to.

There is a Visual Basic 6 petition available by clicking here.
The web site does have issues and doesn’t always work but if you could get your name on it, it would represent another developer whom wishes to let Microsoft know they made a mistake by not extending the life cycle of VB6.

There are still millions of applications designed and developed using VB6 and the migration with VB.NET was not always clean leading to many folks getting upset that the port over to the latest version just had way too many issues to fix instead of just maintaining the VB6 application.

Some of the gotchas working with a language that is over 10 years old that no longer has support is the older components or Crystal Reports 9 which was pretty much the last version that worked cleanly with VB6. Remember Sheridan ActiveX components well the company is gone but the components can still be purchased from Infragistics. Does that mean you should update your components, no it only means that they are available unless you are still selling products designed with VB6 then it may be a good idea to update for enhancements or bug fixes.

With Visual Basic 14 or Visual Studio 2015 coming out in the next few months I am sure people will upgrade their versions. Visual Basic 6 is still loaded on a Lenovo Windows XP notebook that allows maintenance on viable products developed with it.

To move a WordPress web site from one web hosting company to another sometimes can be very stressful due to the unknowns on how WordPress has been saved at the older location.

The following step by step will provide you with the best method to verify your work and keep maintenance limited. The following was done using a Windows 7 machine and extracting a web site from a Linux web server as well as moving it back to a Linux web server.

1. Getting the files from the web hosting machine.

You will need an FTP account to download the entire web site to your local machine. A great software tool to use is FileZilla which is free and can be downloaded from http://www.download.com. All you need is the client version and a few clicks will enable the software you have run the setup.

You will need to get the FTP address from the older web firm as well as the username / password to successfully log into your account.

Once you start up FileZilla, you will have to create a new site (the old web server), on the left window will be the local machine at your location and on the right side will be the remote machine which is the old web server.

A. Create a separate folder on your workstation to safe store the next few steps listed below.

B. You need to download the following folders (wp-admin / wp-content / wp-includes – default directory names), you may run into a installation where the wp-admin was changed for security but that is something you should know unless you had a private installer do it without informing you. That is a Blog on it’s own.

C. Download the files that are in the root directory above these folders, some names are wp-config.php / wp-login.php / wp-settings.php, if you see those files you are doing well. There should be roughly 16 files as you can see below.

The entire process can take between 20 to 30 minutes to download depending on MP3, images, junk.

 

FileZilla

1A. Putting the files on to the new web hosting.

Once you successfully download from the OLD web hosting firm, now you can upload them to the new web hosting firm by creating a new site under file / site manager using filezilla.  You will have locate the NEW FTP IP Address as well as the username / password.

Remember you have to recopy the files / wp-content / wp-admin / wp-includes all up to the NEW web hosting folder which can be either under “www” or “public_html”, this all depends on your web hosting.

2. Backing up the database.

Most folks are using Linux on their web server along with a tool called PhpMyAdmin. You will need to log into your web server account and check the control panel for this tool. PhpMyAdmin makes the task of managing your MySQL databases easier and more efficient, and it allows you to manage those available databases from anywhere and provides you with various different options. The one we are looking at is the export feature and once again provides you with these formats:

SQL
CVS
CodeGen
CVS for Microsoft Excel
Microsoft Word 2000
JSON
LaTeX
MediaWiki Table
OpenDocument Spreadsheet
OpenDocument Text
PDF
PHP Array
Texy! Text
YAML

For the most part you will either use SQL or CVS for exporting purposes.  Remember this is a web based tool, so if you hit the back button or shut out the browser you lose connection. So be careful.

Exporting databases

A. Log into phpMyAdmin
B. Log into your cPanel and click the phpMyAdmin icon under the Databases heading, you may not have that and instead need to click on MYSQL to access the PHPMYADMIN
C. Start up PHPMYADMIN and click on the database you will be working with.
D. Click Export in the top menu
E. Under the Export heading, ensure that all of your tables are selected and that the SQL option is selected.
F. Keep all the options that are default.
G. Ensure the Save as file option (towards bottom of page) is checked. You will see _SERVER_, you should change it to WORDPRESSMMDDYYYY to have a date stamp on the file.
H. Click Go
I. You will be prompted to either open or save the file. Please select the option to save the file and then save the file into the working folder that you are using for the web site.

phpmyadmin

3: Create The WordPress Database On Your New Host Server

Log in to your new web host with the user credentials they have supplied you and connect to the cPanel software. Most of the firms are using MYSQL for the database manager. If your web host doesn’t have that application running then you will should contact their support team to discover their method of creating new databases.

Simply do the following:

A. Open MySQL Database and create a new database with an appropriate name for your website.
B. Create a new MySQL user (with a secure password).
C. Add this user account to the new database and grant it All Privileges.

Write all of this information down because you will need it.

Click on phpMyAdmin / import, browse and locate the CSV or SQL that you exported earlier and click Go.  If everything successfully is imported you will see the tables created in the new database.  I know that this sounds way too simple but it really is.

4: You will have to Edit the wp-config.php file on your local workstation

Locate the wp-config.php in the backed up folder you created back in step 1. You can use any simple text editor to make the modifications.

A. Change The Database Name

Locate the following line:
define('DB_NAME', 'db_name');

The db_name portion of this line will currently be set to the MySQL database name of your old web host. You have to change it, as in our examine it would be WordPress12262014

B. Change the Database Username

Locate the following line:
define('DB_USER', 'db_user');

In this line you need to change the db_user portion to the username that is associated with the database.  Most likely the new username that you created earlier.
C. Change The Database User Password

Finally, edit the third line:
define('DB_PASSWORD', 'db_pass');

As with the others the db_pass section of this line must be changed to the new secure password you created for your MySQL user.

Save wp-config.php and close the file.

5.  Validate the database by testing the new web site based on what your hosting firm provided you.  All web hosting firms have different measures on how to test the new web site.  Keep an eye on wp_options (using phpMyAdmin) for “siteurl” and “home” which will contain the original url.  If you are in test mode and click on the link it will go to the current web site in production.  You may have to change either one to the IP address or the testing url to confirm that the files and database have successfully moved over.

You will have to change them back to the production web url that you are using (example would be www.yahoo.com) to be prepared when you change the IP address in the DNS server to point to the new web hosting firms.

6. If you had any kind of rewrites (permalinks) setup you must disable .htaccess and reconfigure permalinks when it goes live.

7. Finally it is extremely important that you check the wp_options table (phpMyAdmin) for the field fileupload_url this will be the old home directory from the OLD web hosting firm, you will have to put in the latest HOME folder from the NEW web hosting firm into this folder otherwise when you begin to upload any media, those files can be placed into areas you would not have thought of.

8. Final gotchas sometimes are the plugins that you used, they may give you grief on the new hosting company and possibly you will need assistance from them to update the PHP.INI for includes or any other type of modification.

I hope this helps you out when moving a WordPress web site from one company to another, I recently did the similar moves and had success with a few minor glitches of special characters that were embedded in the posts that did not translate correctly when importing back into MySQL.

 

As time progresses and media continues to change a new victim has been taken away from the developers world, Dr. Dobb’s magazine / web site will be closed down by the end of the year.  The reason behind this is the fact that the magazine which was put to rest some time ago to increase revenue never did with the web site.

When I first started programming, I came across this fantastic magazine that dealt with ideas about software development.  Sometimes it went all the way out into space and sometimes it made total sense.  Dr. Dobb’s magazine was a monthly when periodicals were available at your local newspaper stand (yes, they actually had a place to go to pick up newspapers, magazines or gum).

DrDobbs.fw

As we all know the media world continues to evolve from producing paper materials to cyberspace.  The reasoning behind the closure of this fantastic web site is due to the company thinking in advance that it is not making revenue so therefore it is time to close it down.  The editors have promised to keep the current content available (source code, tips, articles) but it will become stale and most likely will be gone within a few years or less.

This is part of the model world for better or worst as well as folks like myself whom are sad that something that I grew up with is going away.  Almost like a brother / sister that is entering paradise.

At least they continue to produce Mad Magazine on paper, what me worry ?

 

Read the article here

The announcement for the Delphi Developer Day 2015 has been announced and you can register at the following link

dddlogo_300x250x

Based on my experience this was an excellent two days of brain storming with some of the best Delphi Developers. Each session breaks into 2 different lectures that you can choose from and the manual has all lectures in there so you do not miss out on much. You can also move between each one without insulting anyone.

Cities and dates for the Delphi Developer Days 2015 tour are:

Chicago, USA: 13-14 April 2015 Register
Amsterdam, The Netherlands: 23-24 April 2015 Register
Oslo, Norway: 7-8 May 2015 Register
Frankfurt, Germany: 11-12 May 2015 Register

This year’s format for Delphi Developer Days follows the same formula as that used in previous years. The presentations include both joint and individual sessions. During the joint sessions, Cary and Ray cover topics that have broad appeal to Delphi developers in general, and not only cover the material, but also share their personal perspectives. For the individual sessions, Ray and Cary break out into separate rooms to present focused topics. And once again, all attendees will receive the highly coveted Delphi Developer Days course book, written by Cary and Ray, where you will find in-depth chapters on all of the material covered during the event. In years past, this course book has included more than 350 pages of material, and this year should be no different.

The seminars agenda has been posted and can be viewed here.

Baron Software will be in Chicago 2015 for the kick off!