[fpc-devel] On recasting BORLAND PASCAL FROM SQUARE ONE for Free Pascal

Joost van der Sluis joost at cnoc.nl
Mon Jan 7 01:19:06 CET 2008

Op zondag 06-01-2008 om 16:26 uur [tijdzone -0700], schreef Jeff

> I figured I would introduce myself, having just signed on to the list 
> here. Some of you may already know me and my work.

Well, I'm happy to say welcome to you here. After all, you're the one
who learned Pascal to me...

If you need any help, or have any questions regarding FPC, I'll be happy
to help. And I'm sure others are also...

> Here are a few issues that I'd like some advice on:
> 1. The book is quite large, at 810 pages. To make a printed book on Lulu 
> that won't fall apart after one reading, the length has to be *much* 
> less than that. I'm thinking of cutting it up into a couple of shorter 
> books.

That won't be a problem, when the books are available as ebook. And
those people who really want a printed copy, they won't mind ordering
two or three books.

> 2. I need to know what platform to base the book on. It's now a DOS 
> book, and I can easily recast it for work in a console window under 
> Windows. However, I suspect that more people use it under Linux. Would 
> basing it on Linux (using text mode in a terminal window) be better?

The original book was based on console and bgi-programs only. As long as
it stays that way, it doesn't matter much. Using and calling FPC doesn't
differ much on both OS'es. You have to know how to open a console in
windows and linux. That's about it. And there are some differences
regarding file path's, file-rights etc, but that doesn't matter much.
The code should be portable.
What does differ is the installation on both OS'es. But you could write
about that in two paragrahs. Or something similar?

Overall I think that most ppl who are using FPC are using windows. But
those who are writing console-based applications mostly use linux. And
there are more mainly linux-based developers. (And then I mean
developers of FPC/Lazarus itself)

> 3. The book does not cover objects in depth. I'm of two minds about how 
> to cover object-oriented programming: I prefer Delphi's object model, 
> but I've used Turbo Vision (I named it, in fact) and have some example 
> code. Which would be better? (I don't think I would cover objects in the 
> first book, at any rate.

The TP-Object model is supported fully. But I think that hardly anyone
uses it anymore. (Although there was someone on the fpc-devel list last
week) So base it on the Delphi object model. Or, on classes, as we call

> 4. How important is it to cover GUI apps written from text mode? (That 
> is, without using Lazarus or something else Delphi-like.) This wouldn't 
> be in the first volume, obviously, but are enough people doing it 
> (whether for Windows or Linux) to make the coverage worthwhile? I didn't 
> do much on GUI apps prior to Delphi, apart from some minor messing 
> around with Turbo Pascal for Windows. So that would be all new research 
> for me and might take awhile--and I would prefer to cover it via Lazarus 
> anyway.

I won't call it one of the most important things. It is done, using
OpenGL or SDL by some game-developers.

> That's the most of it. Alas, I don't have a Mac and can't really cover 
> OS/X. However, if anyone here would like to work over the material once 
> I release it for FPC, I'd be happy with that.
> Do let me know what you think. I need to mention that I work fairly 
> slowly (mostly because I'm not retired and have a lot of other things to 
> do) but I'm willing to release chapters as I finish them if people want 
> them.

That's no problem. We are all volunteers.

> Good luck and thanks for listening. I'm on the list now and will start 
> digging back into FPC again.

Nice to have you here.


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