The Swift programming language dies

Why is Delphi / Object-Pascal such an unpopular programming language?

Hello dear readers,

My name is Carsten and I program full-time with the programming language Object Pascal in the development environment called Delphi. According to the "tiobe-index", a monthly updated ranking of programming languages ​​based on popularity that has been published since 2001, Delphi / Object Pascal is only in 19th place behind newer programming languages ​​such as Swift or Go. In March 2018, Object Pascal was still in 13th place:

In addition, in various developer forums you can always find very long posts on topics such as “Why is Delphi so hated?” Or “Delphi is dead!” And the like. Why is Delphi so unpopular anyway?

Distribution / pricing policy

One of the reasons is the poor spread of Delphi. A free version has only been available for Delphi for about a year. That is why it was never really possible to gain new users in the past. Only the possibility with Lazarus, another IDE that can be programmed in Object Pascal, could be used to work with this programming language. Another reason Delphi is unpopular is its pricing policy, which has been maintained from the start. When Delphi 1 came out, there was almost nothing in the RAD sector, which is why it was very popular and successful in the beginning. Also because the price-performance ratio was very good. Back then, Delphi had everything it needed to become really popular, if it hadn't been for pricing. The price of licenses has been raised, if not doubled, on a regular basis. Other languages, however, were more and more often available (almost) free of charge.

"The syntax is stupid"

In general, developers who have previously only worked with other programming languages ​​are not interested in really dealing with the syntax. Most only react with a disparaging look when they hear that instead of two curly brackets (“{” and “}”) a “begin” and “end” should be used. In addition, instead of a simple “=”, a “: =” is used to assign variables. Here is a small example to illustrate the difference between Delphi and the programming language C # (C-Sharp):

Delphi:

C # (C-Sharp):

Delphi is too old

Delphi 1 was released in 1995 and this is why many believe that Delphi was extinct. Most of them complain about the price policy mentioned above and complain about a non-existent free version, which is why no new users can be gained.

My own conclusion

In my opinion, Delphi is a very good language for beginners as Delphi is very easy to learn because of the syntax. Unfortunately, as described above, the free version has been missing in recent years. However, a free starter version came with Delphi 10 last year. With Delphi still evolving and even offering cross-platform programming, I don't think Delphi is dead by any means.
One can argue about the syntax of the individual programming languages. Some prefer to work briefly and concisely with individual characters such as the curly braces, others prefer to work with written words such as "begin" and "end". I am extremely satisfied with Delphi and, even if I know other programming languages, I will not deviate from Delphi for the next few years!