WinDev (split from original)

Yes relatively rational actors such as yourself are one thing but there is a lot of FUD out there around “will we be able to find anybody to work on it”, “will the vendor disappear one day”, etc. In my view these concerns are mostly specious (even MSFT could disappear one day, that is exactly why your have source code escrow agreements and the like; to me, any language environment has its mix of up and downsides and one can find enjoyment working within those constraints and there are ways to keep current / expose your team to an interesting mix of technologies). But the reality is that a lot of people making such decisions are political animals who advance to the level of their own incompetence by making “safe”, non-controversial decisions that don’t have to be defended to anyone and are fairly airtight. Also, they often read magazine articles and pick up the buzz about the latest & greatest and feel no one can fault them for staying with those supposedly ascendant technologies. So they go with magic silver bullets and by the time the decision proves a bad one they have been promoted somewhere else.

I was a little slow on the uptake so didn’t get a chance to investigate but there was a job on Dice a couple of weeks ago where supposedly someone was looking for deep FoxPro expertise here in the year of our Lord 2023. I could have probably been a shoo-in for that despite being rusty as hell (haven’t touched FP since about 2007, but I wrote books and authored and taught courseware on the product and was tech editor of FoxTalk for several years). Someone has clearly decided that something ain’t broke and shouldn’t be fixed – just maintained and extended. Depending on the company, the management and their reasoning process and strategy, I might have actually gone ahead with that retro-computing assignment. But I am sure they are finding it very hard to locate expertise or to hold onto developers in-house for a “dead” language that has to be coaxed to run on modern versions of Windows. That’s of course a somewhat different question from a still-living platform with questionable staying power, but it’s not entirely unrelated, either.

Remember the saying
No one ever got fired for buying IBM ?
Until IBM missed the boat with desktop computing and client server supplanted mainframes - which IBM was late to the game on
And then it turned into
No one ever got fired for buying MS ?
which might be changing as everything heads to the cloud - but MS hasn’t completely missed that boat so maybe they are still “safe”

That was the US govt’s issue with the PPP and so many other programs
They couldn’t find COBOL programmers to update the systems to handle it all

Definitely related
And may be related
Long ago as RB “gained steam” you could see more & more “experienced” programmers joining the various mailing lists etc
There used to be articles in many trade mags - I wrote several for MacTech
There was a noticeable “upswing” in the number of full time developers using it
And work became more & more common to find

Now that seems to be in decline
Much the same curve as so many other “dead languages” have gone through
At first the # of people using tit is low & rates can be high IF its “the cool new thing”
As more people learn rates moderate downwards as more & more developers learn the lang
Then something new comes along & there are increasingly few devs still using “that old language” and rates can start to move up again as there are fewer & fewer devs that use tat “old language”

Personally I think Xojo is in that last phase where there are increasingly few expert users left


Yeah I am going through a similar thing at my current gig. Long story short, this was a startup I got in on the ground floor of in 2008 and designed and built most of their operations code, down to the ops dashboards, much of the DB, and one of their key customer-facing products.

In 2020 we were acquired by what I shall call Giant International MegaCorp at firesale prices due basically to the founder going senile and no succession plan.

At Giant International MegaCorp (GIMG) they are standardized on Java and Google Cloud. We, the acquired company, use C# and Azure. To the executives of GIMG, .NET and Azure Cloud might as well be Xojo or COBOL. But their plan was to just Keep the Lights On for a year or so, digest our data and our customer list, and shut us down.

It’s been 2.5 years and counting. Their offshore team, we discovered last month, in trying to absorb our data into their cloud initiative (everyone calls it “the data fabric” but mostly doesn’t know what that even is) has been coding to our internal work/scratch files instead of the actual contributor files (1500 of them contributing anywhere from monthly to daily), which means what little they have accomplished in 2 years has to be ditched.

Meanwhile I’m 5 weeks away from the limit of how long they can keep me on as a “contingent employee” and someone in the hierarchy has the bright idea that they can just cut me loose and put one of those geniuses in Mumbai in my place at a tenth of the cost.

I almost don’t care how it sorts out because I either keep the highest paying gig I’ve ever had (if they’re rational about it) or I get to watch them suffer and die in the most baroque possible ways. The other key person has told me they will quit if I am cut loose and they will be hemorrhaging clients and drowning in lawsuits inside of 2 months, tops. All this because despite spending $14M on us they have never even thought to inquire whether our technology would benefit the larger company, because, you know, it’s Not Java and it’s not on Google Cloud. They have not thought to understand how it works even from a self-protection standpoint. Indeed, they let the only person besides me who has any technical understanding of how operations works quit without bothering to replace him. From what I’m told their existing legacy DB is a dogpile of – well, I won’t say what, except that it really, REALLY smells. Because they are sales and profit driven and not technology driven, all that matters is that their data turns a profit, even if it is the product of a distal orifice.

So it goes …


WOW… change the names of the companies, and you just told MY story word for word.

They transitioned my “job” to a “team” in India… and those morons never could understand the logic behind the system I spent 10 years working on… They could write code, but they could not design shit.

And previous, during an acquistion, I ran it to the same thing you did with Azure, just it was a different set of tools.

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It’s a story old as time, I guess!


I lost out a couple of consulting gigs because the product owner hired it out to Indian developers. Probably 1/5 the price of me. I heard back from them two years later - they wished they had retained us because it would have been done on time and more or less on budget. We estimated it at about 6 months worth of work.

Like everyone else we have piles and piles of tooling that we include just because every app needs them. We just assume you need a preferences system and we have something to drop in place. The offshore folks didn’t even think about it until the client brought it up. Change order for big $$. Unless you specified exactly what they had to code then they didn’t do it. What a scam. I didn’t feel sorry for the client in the slightest.

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Yes I have had that happen so many times in so many forms. Way back in the late 1980s I had a small manufacturer that wanted customizations to their accounting software. The owner’s nephew offered to do it for a third of the cost. I just smiled, wished them well, and went my way. Six months later I was called in on an emergency basis because their company was paralyzed due to dear nephew’s changes. He didn’t understand file locking, which was more manual in those days, or the difference between an optimistic and pessimistic locking strategy, etc. In the end they became one of my most loyal clients, until I moved out of the area and turned my local clients over to a very capable subcontractor. I was sad to see the other day that they have gone out of business. One of the last employee reviews on Glassdoor stated this was their favorite place to work, they were treated and paid well and had interesting problems to solve (metal working) – but just one problem, the company couldn’t afford the raw materials to build their designs out. Small little detail there.

So you can imagine why French users of Xojo are disappointed that Xojo stopped translating years ago.
Non-english speakers are forced to use programming languages in english; we have the same disappointment you’ve experienced, but all the year along :wink:

The best thing for you is to try out their Express Edition before you make any concrete decision.

Being an Ex-FoxPro expert it will be very easy for you to learn and adapt to WinDev.

I have observed that most if the non-French speaking developers come from Clarion background to WinDev.

Frankly having developed a few software and tools in WX I can say that it is very powerful and has a very large collection of controls and I have never found a need to use any third party ActiveX or .NET component for any of my development.

For example if I were using Xojo for building a document management system which allows users to edit Word Documents, Excel Sheets & Images (jpeg/png/gif/bmp) also support PDF viewing, I would have to buy separately many third party libraries and controls but not in case of WX!

Here is a link to a document listing all the new features and updates in WinDev 27.

Indeed a fair point. Which still doesn’t make it optimal in the other direction. Also (and you can rightly regard this as our self-inflicted problem) but far more French speakers have reasonable fluency in English as a second language than the inverse. In my immediate family we have, among us, a stale high school level knowledge of Spanish, French and German, but I don’t think even that is typical of us “ugly Americans”.

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Now THERE is a blast from the past. I haven’t thought of Clarion since I looked at it as a possible platform for myself in the late 1990s. I was reasonably impressed with it, but like the XBase language / product families, it was doomed.

I will definitely check WinDev out, as well as the FreeBasic ecosystem. While single code base cross platform is not a trivial thing to implement, someone HAS to have figured it out and executed on it better than Xojo and the other alternatives I’ve looked at so far.

I’ve been working for a French company for 6 years now and the experience I’ve made there is that about 98% of French people do not speak English at all.

Do not … or will not? I was always amazed how many places in Europe you could get by with English but in France particularly it seemed like you couldn’t win for loosing because they either seemed to take it as disrespect not to speak French or if you weren’t very good with French they would not meet you halfway, either. Even as a tourist. and not playing the Ugly American, either. But I guess simply not knowing English would explain that, too.

Enjoyed my times there in spite of it though!

Only place I ever encountered that was in Quebec - but that was right at the height of the separation debate in the early 80’s

When we were in France we stumbled along with a smattering of French and people realized we were NOT from there, smiled at our lousy French, & were very polite. And if they spoke a little English we made it work.

Spent a nice afternoon on a patio with a very nice young family & their kids & enjoyed a nice drink & a snack with them.

Had a great time

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