Top ten objections to PowerBuilder
- programmers are too expensive
- programmers are too hard to find
- fat client
- must be installed
- on windows only
- doesn’t run in a browser
- unsupported beyond very soon
- we are a .net shop
- we are a java shop
- power what?????
Top ten real challenges
- The real world thinks we are programmers. We are not perceived as domain experts, diplomats, rapid designers, architects, object orientalists, occasional script typist, testers or analysts…
- PB “Programmers” are hard to find. We are not over the hill; instead we are all hiding in a back room somewhere pretending to be busy supporting the legacy pfc systems that like us refuse to go away. As in: Reluctant to learn java to arm ourselves with a fighting chance of competing with recent engineering degrees from all corners, at half your minimum, already priced to sell, hourly rate. Or maybe working from home teaching our visiting grand kids phrases like “who wrote this darn thing in the first place”.
- 2Tier client server systems are hard to scale and can be painful to deploy.
- 2Tier client server systems have difficulty reaching the cloud where the database has been blown up to save on infrastructure.
- PB can deploy to windows 10, the web and even the mainstream smartphone. The real challenge is that we are so used to developing large applications with a framework best suited for window mdi with a few old controls thrown in and direct access to the local disk.
- PowerBuilder is not on anyone’s radar. If it is, 1-9 of above the top ten applies.
- A framework no longer cuts it. Frameworks used to be: be all/end all; now is more like just; end all. The challenge is to develop a bunch of design patterns that enable rapid, sorry, agile developments of functioning applications, sorry, apps and assemblies/web services.
- Finding a target market for PowerBuilt systems has always been challenging. A long time ago risk adverse financial controllers were reluctant to approve a budget for core enterprise systems using an unproven technology. Today, risk adverse CFOs are reluctant to approve a budget for in-house, bespoke systems using an ailing technology.
- PowerBuilder is extremely feature rich, so there is plenty in the shop, but little in the window and everything is bought on-line anyway. Not sure this a challenge or a strength.
- We need a vision; not a division amongst the few of us left. The developer community appears to be demanding a road-map of more and more features, but as someone pointed out recently, there are too many half-hearted somewhat not quite finished features. Won’t mention the ones that were rudely withdrawn.
(Just as I am about to click Publish, I notice there is a list of Categories I can choose for this blog to help others to find my content. It has one item. “PowerBuilder 15 Beta”. Had there been one called “PowerBuilder 15 Better” then I might have chosen it for this blog)