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Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Choosing which components to use in your application is an important decision that warrants careful consideration. Wrong decisions can be costly.
Weve been using Delphi to develop applications since Delphi 1.0 back in 1995; and before that Turbo Pascal. All our applications help companies manage their sales teams. Over the years weve made mistakes when selecting component vendors. From these mistakes weve learned our lesson. When we started developing AlignMix, our flagship sales territory mapping application, we had a clear set of principles for choosing which components wed use. To give you some background, AlignMix was launched in 2016 and now has over 5,000 users. It has a minimalist design, with strong focus on delivering a beautiful user experience for our corporate clients.
Heres our guiding principles:
1. Avoid Freeware:
This one is a little controversial since many developers prefer open source over closed source. But in our experience the Delphi world is full of hobbyist who create great components, make it freeware, develop it for a few years and then move on as their priorities change. Even if the source is available, we dont want to spend our time maintaining someone elses code. Its different if the project has a large community of developers, but this is rare in the world of Delphi.
2. Partner with Companies Who Are Committed to the Delphi Platform:
We prefer to choose component developers who are clearly committed to Delphi. We dont want to use components from companies that only dabble with Delphi. We want a company where the leadership is always thinking about new ways to help the Delphi community. This is one area where TMS really shines. I dont know of any component vendor that is more committed to the Delphi platform than TMS.
3. Look for Companies that Quickly Support New Versions of Delphi:
Its frustrating when a shiny new version of Delphi is released but youre not able to upgrade simply because a component vendor takes its time to support the new version. Once again TMS is brilliant at quickly supporting each new version of Delphi. As soon as a new version is released you can be sure TMS will almost immediately publish a timetable showing when each of their products will support the new version.
4. Minimize the Number of Component Vendors You Use:
If you follow principles 1 to 3, youll most likely end up choosing just a few component vendors. Thats what weve done. And were reluctant to add any more. Thankfully TMS has a comprehensive range of components that cover almost all our needs. Look at the screenshots to see how they are used in AlignMix. We trust Bruno and his team and will be working with them for the foreseeable future.
If youd like to see AlignMix you can find out more on the website.
Author: Steve Maughan
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