Saturday, February 21, 2009

Comments by Steffen F. Pirsig, CTO of Xbase++

CCH: I was pleasantly surprised to read a Guest Book message from Steffen F. Pirsig, CTO of Xbase++ on February 2009. Rather than leaving the interesting comments in the Guest Book, I have chosen to republish it verbatim as follow :-

Nice blog, however I feel you are something out of touch with reality. I mean xBase as a language is vitale since years.

The point is that Xbase++ for example is used by developers to earn their living, or for inhouse development. So there is not much hype around - to give you some numbers.
Xbase++ customers are coming from more than 140 countries, Alaska Software is getting approx 300 new leads per month, according to our last projection there are more than 1. million end users working with Xbase++ solutions.

Have a look at;
you will see large corporations working with Xbase++. Projectgroups with sizes of 30+ developers working fulltime with Xbase++.

So I would say Clipper is by far not dead - it is dead as a product but not as a language.

IMO, the idea of Clipper (or dBase aka Vulcan) to provide an programming abstraction centered around the concepts of a database is well thought. Nantucket added the concept of encapsulation plus codeblocks to Clipper 5.x, this was another great move forward - just imagine .NET people got something similar to codeblocks just 1 or 2 years ago - so the nantucket people have really done they job very well. (Of course the codeblocks are from Lisp but who cares

With Xbase++, Alaska Software has strictly followed that idea, not going deeper into the system - but providing an abstraction of emerging technologies such as threads, object persistence and so on. As of today there is still no tool available in the market which provides that clean and easy to use way of multithreading.

So I think even if Clipper as a product has been dead since more than a decade, the idea of the language is still alive - at least from my point of view which is of course driven by the way of thinking here at Alaska Software.

Regarding, Harbour or xHarbour, well I personally think these projects do contribute to the visibility of the language, but both projects miss momentum and are not innovating.

Just a few comments regards your realization that Clipper as a language is not dead *O*

From the Web

Steffen F. Pirsig
holds the position as Chief Technical Officer since having started out with the design and implementation of Xbase++ in Oct. 1994. He also is a co-founder of Alaska Software and President of Alaska Software, Inc.

At present, Steffen is a great deal involved with the D2 Project Group laying out the foundation of new exciting database-technologies for the next major release of the Xbase++ technology-platform. Simultaneously Steffen works with the V2 Team-members on core-technologies
for the forthcoming release of Visual Xbase++ 2.0.

As a frequent speaker at various developer conferences as well as at universities, Steffen manages to combine his passion for database management systems, distributed computing and of course Xbase++, with his love for engaging into shop talks and in-depth discussions while presenting his ideas and visions to an interested audience.

Steffen enjoys good vines, hiking and music of independent labels. He also likes to fly rc-planes, for which he has not found any time in the last 18 months.

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Welcome to Clipper... Clipper... Clipper

In 1997, then using Delphi 3, I had already created 32-bits Windows applications for HRIS, ERP and CRM. In 2007, using Ruby on Rails, an AJAX powered CRM site running on Apache & MySQL was created and I am now using Visual Studio .Net 2008 to create web-based projects and Delphi 7 for Win32 applications using SQL2005 & DBFCDX.

So, why then am I reviving the Original Clipper... Clipper... Clipper via a Blog as CA-Clipper is a programming language for the DOS world ? Believe it or not, there are still some clients using my mission-critical CA-Clipper applications for DOS installed in the late 80's and up to the mid 90's. This is testimony to CA-Clipper's robustness as a language :-)

With the widespread introduction of Windows 7 64-bits as the standard O/S for new Windows based PCs & Notebooks, CA-Clipper EXE simply will not work and it has become imperative for Clipper programmers to migrate immediately to Harbour to build 32/64 bits EXEs

Since 28th January 2009, this blog has been read by 134,389 (10/3/11 - 39,277) unique visitors (of which 45,151 (10/3/11 - 13,929) are returning visitors) from 103 countries and 1,574 cities & towns in Europe (37; 764 cities), North America (3; 373 cities) , Central America & Caribeans (6; 13 cities), South America(10; 226 cities), Africa & Middle-East (12; 44 cities) , Asia-Pacific (21; 175 cities). So, obviously Clipper is Alive & Well : -)

TIA & Enjoy ! (10th October 2012, 11:05; 13th November 2015)

Original Welcome Page for Clipper... Clipper... Clipper

This is the original Welcome Page for Clipper... Clipper... Clipper, which I am republishing for historical and sentimental reasons. The only changes that I have made was to fix all the broken links. BTW, the counter from is still working :-)

Welcome to Chee Chong Hwa's Malaysian WWW web site which is dedicated to Clipperheads throughout the world.

This site started out as a teeny-weeny section of Who the heck is Chee Chong Hwa ? and has graduated into a full blown web site of more than 140 pages (actually hundreds of A4 size pages) ! This is due to its growing popularity and tremendous encouragements from visiting Clipperheads from 100 countries worldwide, from North America, Central America, Caribbean, South America, Europe, Middle-East, Africa and Asia-Pacific. Thanx Clipperheads, you all made this happen !

What is Clipper ?

You may ask, what is this Clipper stuff ? Could Clipper be something to do with sailing as it is the name of a very fast sailing American ship in the 19th century ?

Well, Clipper or to be precise, CA-Clipper is the premier PC-Software development tool for DOS. It was first developed by Nantucket Corporation initially as a compiler for dBase3+ programs. Since then, CA-Clipper has evolved away from its x-base roots with the introduction of lexical scoping & pre-defined objects like TBrowse. As at today, the most stable version ofClipper is 5.2e while the latest version, 5.3a was introduced on 21 May 1996.

As at 11th November, 1996, an unofficial 5.3a fixes file was made available by Jo French. See the About CA-Clipper 5.3a section for more details. BTW, Jo French uploaded the revised 5.3a fixes file on 20th November, 1996.

Latest News

The latest news is that CA has finally released the long-awaited 5.3b patch on 21 May, 1997.

For 5.3b users, you must a take a look at Jo French's comments on unfixed bugs in 5.3b.

BTW, have you used Click ? If you're a serious Clipperprogrammer and need an excellent code formatter, Click is a natural choice. How to get it ? Simple, access Phil Barnett's site via my Cool Clipper Sites.

32-bits Clipper for Windows ?

Have you tried Xbase ++ ? Well, I have and compared to Delphi (my current Windows programming tool of choice), I'm still sticking to Delphi.

Anyway, you should visit the Alaska Home Page. Give it a chance and then draw your own conclusions !.

The Harbour Project

Is this the future of Xbase ? Take a look at at the Harbour Project

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If you like or dislike what you see on this website, please drop me a line by clicking the email button at the bottom of this page or better still, by filling out the form in my guest book. If you are not sure what to write,click here to take a look at what other Clipperheads have to say.