[fpc-pascal]The state of FPC (was: Synapse for FPC)

Michael Van Canneyt michael.vancanneyt at wisa.be
Thu Jul 24 15:10:09 CEST 2003

On Thu, 24 Jul 2003, Matt Emson wrote:

> > It does, with the proviso that 'messy' is a very personal appreciation
> > of our file structure. I find it logical and not confusing at all.
> >
> > Keep in mind that it must be cross-platform.
> > Your remarks are focusing on the point of view of a single platform user.
> Exactly. For the average joe user, it's single platform work that matters.

NOT if they want to use FPC, which we _explicitly_ target as a
_multiplatform_ development tool.

Note that I don't deny that there is still work on the Delphi
compatibility front. You're welcome to make contributions in
this area.

> You are focusing as a FPC developer, not an end user.
> That is why you can't
> see how unwieldy and intimidating the FPC unit structure can be if you don't
> undestand it, or if you come from a Borland background.

The average user will not want to dig in our sources in the first place.

He/she wants to install the compiler, compile programs and not look at
our sources. In fact, many don't even install the sources. Most
developers in my company have never even seen the Delphi units,
and they should not. Likewise for FPC.

All other developers, which want a little more control and background,
must endure a small learning curve.
A small price to pay for cross-platform development IMHO.

> > For multi-platform development, wading though include files is easier
> > than wading through zillions of IFDEF statements: At least from the
> > name of the include file (displayed by your editor) you know in what
> > part you are working. Not so when working with IFDEFs.
> What I was proposing was that the FPC developers can keep their own scheme,
> but the end users should be presented with readable, single file units. This
> would make everything more accessable to the end user.

This I can live with, but I would provide this only as a service to the
end user, and definitely not as the 'source' distribution.

> > I think they do, because the IDE does NOT support include files, so you
> simply
> > cannot work with include files and enjoy the blessings of the IDE.
> > I was told that for productivity reasons they do all development
> > in the IDE itself, so...
> That will be why there are a lot of machine generated directives for C
> Builder then. They do that all by hand I guess. They at least use a master
> set of VCL units from which the distro is created.
> > > Remeber, just because it's easy to maintain for you, doesn't mean it's a
> > > good thing for the end user. That's a fact I'm afraid.
> >
> > Once more, this is a matter of taste.
> No, it's not. This is a matter of fact. It's also a matter of fact that many
> developers focus on their own back yard, and don't bnecessarily see the
> bigger picture. The end user is often ignored or worse still told they are
> wrong. Kind of like now really ;-)

I meant that some people prefer include files to ifdefs. In that sense,
it is a matter of taste.

If one presumes as a fact that everybody prefers single-file sources with
IFDEFS in it, then your statement about 'a matter of fact' is 100%
correct, and I will not dispute it.

But this presumption is IMHO not correct. It's all I wanted to say.


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