Embarcadero’s Rad Studio XE2 World Tour

I recently attended the Rad Studio XE2 World Tour designed to show off the virtues of the latest version of Delphi. Having used various versions of Delphi over the last 10 years I thought it would be interesting to go along and see how things have moved on.

I’m currently using Delphi 2010 for the vast majority of my development work and this currently restricts me to 32-bit Windows development. A new component added to the XE2, named FireMonkey, changes this restriction. You can now build executables from Delphi for 32-bit & 64-bit Windows along with Mac OS X and even iOS!

This post is a quick review of the main new features I learnt about at the workshop and how they may be of use.
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Mac Updates Also Require A Restart

I noticed the other day that one of the applications on my iMac required updating. This seemed to do an update for the whole system and a few updates were found. This all seemed perfectly natural to me the only thing that did come as a little surprise was the fact that the updates required a restart of the computer…

I always thought that this was a Windows issue. Using Windows it seems that most installations required at least one restart to complete the process.

Linux, on the other hand, allows files to be replaced even if they are in use, allowing use of the new version next time the files are required. There are certain circumstances where the files are kept in memory, the kernel for example, and then only a manual restart would force the new files to be used.

As OS X is based around Linux, as far as I understand, then I wasn’t expecting to be asked to restart…

I am not saying this is a bad thing, maybe there was an update that did require a restart to be completely installed so why no ask to do it at the end of the update process?

It is still early days for me with OS X and so I’m not sure if this is a regular thing and it certainly isn’t any worse than on Windows. I just like the idea of my iMac staying on for long periods of time, especially as it is so good at going into a low powered state, without the obligatory reboots required on a Windows system if you want it to continue to run smoothly…

Uncluttered Mac Spaces

One feature on OS X that I instantly found invaluable is ‘Spaces’. This allows you to set up different workspaces (in fact I think that’s what the feature is called on Linux systems).

Each space gives you a clean desktop to open application as desired. This seems better than the cluttered desktop that I always seem to end up with on my Windows box…

Instead of having to minimise windows or switch between the many open windows until you find the one you are looking for you can just slide to another space, leaving the current one as it is, and group your windows together as required.

It’s like having a collection of monitors on your desk without the extra expense or the desk space…

How To Type A Hash On A Mac Keyboard

I am loving my new iMac. There are lots of little differences though and so there are a few things to learn along the way…

The keyboard looks very stylish and compact. I was a bit concerned that it wouldn’t be very comfortable to type on but to my surprise it’s excellent! The only thing that I am having a problem with is where the keys are…

Some keys are in a slightly different place than a standard Windows keyboard. This can be a bit frustrating. One thing that did catch me out completely was the # key… There isn’t one?

OK. So how do you add a hashtag to your latest tweet?

It took a bit of digging but I eventually found out that you can get a # by holding down alt (⌥) and then pressing 3.

Windows or Mac?

This post started out as part of my personal blog but started to get a bit technical so I thought it would be better suited on a new, more technical, blog which ties in well with my business activities.

My business web site has sat stagnant for a while so what better place to host these technical snippets than right here…

There are some fairly technical posts over on my other blog over at peteoshea.com, if you are interested, but I will probably either link to them directly in the near future or copy them over to this blog to make this my go to technical reference site.

Anyway without further a do here is my thoughts on desktop operating systems…
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