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  • PGD News Round-up for Feb 2011

    Hello faithful Pascal developers and thank you for reading the PGD New Round-up for February 2011! Some exciting new things have been happening in our community and I'm happy to be able to write about them for you all once again. This is now the second PGD News Round-up and hopefully not the last. If you have any news or other exciting information to share with the community, please feel free to let us know about it via a new forum topic post or PM myself or one of the staff and let us know. We love to see an active community so the more people that contribute or post the more exciting it is to come and participate!

    Who's In Charge Here Anyhow?!

    Well wouldn't you know it, after not too long after a conversation involving project Lazarus not really providing much information about it's internal structure as an organized development project, I noticed that neither did PGD. Wow, time to eat some crow I guess. So in an effort to correct this error on my part, I've updated the FAQ once again adding some important information about the people that currently run the site and have done a great job of doing so in the past. If you would like to finally know just who are all the staff on the site and who is who out of all those who help to run the Pascal Game Development community, check out the new FAQ section under 'PGD General Site Information' found here.

    Staff-wise, we currently have a total of three staff, including myself. AthenaOfDelphi currently performs admin duties including that of spam reduction, while code_glitch is a moderator for the forums helping to keep things orderly and deleting all spam so that it does not appear on the forums. If you would like to learn more about me, I have a write-up under 'Who runs the PGD website?'. Anyone else interested in volunteering their time to help out the site and the community feel free to contact me to see what you can help with.

    We will be continually providing more information into the FAQ section of the site as we figure out what is needed. Think something is missing, let us know about it.

    Finally Get Back to Delphi

    It might have taken a while, but Embaracdero finally has reached out to the indie developer crowd and released an affordable version of Delphi that won't break the bank. Delphi XE Starter Edition now only going for $199 USD and if you are a current Pascal developer using any existing developer tool you can take advantage of their discount price for this edition for only $149 USD. Not bad for over years of extremely high priced versions of this software. The only real caveat would be the '$1000 US dollar per year profit limit' clause which comes with this product. It has been said that Embarcadero has no plans to tightly enforce the $1000 dollar limit, however this appears to have put several developers off the concept that the company proposes. Some would say that the new offering is indeed an improvement over past options in recent years, but overall it's not exactly what they were hoping for. It could be a simple matter of perspective, but in time perhaps Embarcadero can finally win the hearts back of those past Delphi fans who many have felt left behind by some of Borland's past maneuvers in marketing the popular tool brand.

    Other exciting news for this year includes the announcement of planned release of Delphi XE 2, which will finally support 64-bit program execution and cross-compiling to Mac OS X. This release due August of 2011.

    Read more about Delphi XE Starter at www.embarcadero.com.

    News Posts are Coming In

    I'd like to thank all those that have been posting news lately. As this is purely a volunteer community and not a commercial site everything that is contributed here is done on the side. There is no one here that works on PGD full time. Every little piece of news or passed private message is helpful and highly welcomed. Thank you all who are making a difference in the community and helping to keep all other developers informed.

    Those interested in posting news here at PGD should read the contents of these important links; Rules & Conduct FAQ, WYSIWYG Editor Instructions and the vBulletin CMS FAQ section. You of course must register an account with the website and then you'll notice a neat little form at the top-right of the main page that looks like this...

    Leave it as selected and click on Go to be taken to the article submission page. Where you are in the CMS section of the site will determine what type of article you have created; News Article or a full magazine style article in the Articles sub-section of the site.

    Donations to the Community

    Thank you so much to those that have been donating to both Pascal Game Development community and also the Pascal Gamer Magazine publication. Those these are actually separate entities and operate as such, they are together still a part of the same greater community and act as a medium for spreading good information to other Pascal developers across the globe.

    Thank you to both Maria Armero for your gift to PGD and Cezar Wagenheimer for yours to Pascal Gamer. Your contributed funding will go to good use, which also includes hacking at the cost toward service providers and domain registration.

    RemObjects Working on a New Compiler for the Masses

    Just a little history about RemObject's product development; Their original compiler product was Chrome and it was an Object Pascal solution for .NET and Mono that surpassed, at the time Borland's, Delphi for .NET attempts. When Embarcadero got their hands on all Delphi products from original owners Borland, they did away with Delphi for .NET and instead created Delphi Prism using the next version of Chrome called Oxygene, leading it to be exclusively licensed to Embarcadero.

    Just recently RemObjects Software announced their plans for a new compiler project that is developed on the back of their existing Oxygene compiler called Cooper. It's planned to be a native Java code and Android app generating cross-compiler using the same language style as the existing Oxygene compiler currently licensed for and used in Embarcadero's Delphi Prism. In short, if you have used Chrome or Delphi Prism, you'll be familiar with Cooper. Best of all, there will be no .NET or Mono requirement for created apps. All generated apps are native and run without the managed code run-time.

    This marks the first compiler product to be available from RemObjects directly and the first foray into the Android platform using the Object Pascal programming language. This is sure to please all those interested in mobile game development that seems to be a growing trend of late.

    Learn more about the Cooper project at www.remobjects.com.

    Been there, Done that, Got the T-shirt!

    Enjoy the Ludum Dare competition scene? Well lots of Pascal programmers sure do. They have recently put all their shirts, hats, mugs and buttons and buttons on sale. The sale is probably over by now, but you can still get some cool Ludum Dare merchandise. Any interest in such novelties and souvenirs with a PGD theme to help represent the community?

    Check out the Ludum Dare shop at www.zazzle.com.

    Lazarus: Complete Guide, Now in English

    The rather well known book, previously only available in German that was written by Lazarus contributor, Michael van Canneyt and others is now finally being translated into English and will be available from the publishers of Blaise Pascal Magazine. It is being offered in a number of editions bundled with the Lazarus USB Stick Portable, which also has a new look. Prices range from Ǩ55 to Ǩ70 euros. Payments can be made by PayPal or Credit Card. Profit from book sales will benefit the foundation that publishes Blaise Pascal Magazine.

    Learn more about this book at www.blaisepascal.eu.

    A Little Bit of Wii Time

    Francesco Lombardi may be better known for his amazing contributions towards adding GameBoy Advance and Nintendo DS target support to the Free Pascal compiler project. However some time ago he had also tinkered with the Wii platform as well. Recently he has come back to it and spend many hours of his time adding Nintendo Wii support to the compiler. Best of all, it works! The resulting compiler spits out the necessary .DOL executable that would run on the Wii platform as tested by the Dolphin Wii emulator. Francesco aka Legolas, plans to update information on the Free Pascal Wiki explaining some of the process and libraries involved.

    Get more information of how to develop for the Wii using Free Pascal at www.itaprogaming.free.fr.

    New API and Library Stuff

    Last, but not least, there have been some pretty interesting things happening with some of the popular API and game libraries. Newton Game Dynamics has gone open source under a zlib license as announced here. Also get the latest Pascal headers for it thanks to Sascha Willems at www.saschawillems.de. SDL 1.3 development is now progressing as talked about here by Sam Lantinga. Hadron Game Engine by Jarrod Davis has reverted back to being called the PyroGine Game Developer Studio with two versions becoming available announced here.

    Let's of course not forget, KSDev components based on DirectX and OpenGL API have been purchased by Embarcadero as announced here. It should be interesting to see what plans Embarcadero has for some of the interesting work that went into them.

    Read what other people had to write about the deal: Marco Cantu, Delphi Haven

    Thanks for tuning into February's New Round-up. I hope you enjoyed reading. Be sure to check back again for more great news for Pascal game developers.
    Comments 3 Comments
    1. code_glitch's Avatar
      code_glitch -
      Nice. Must say, I'm liking this new round-up a lot. Good summary of it all. Although, might I say that the FAQ page (under rules/guidelines) still has the Help Me rules. But didn't we bin that a while back?

      PGD 1.0 - Now thats one to keep.
    1. WILL's Avatar
      WILL -
      The 'Help Me!' forum was put to bed last year and I have yet to update the FAQ to remove it. I plan another few updates in the next little bit. Check back later for them.

      I also would like to have a mini display of all the past versions of the site too. Just because I think it would be neat.
    1. code_glitch's Avatar
      code_glitch -
      Can't disagree with that I guess