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Frederick J. Harris:
Just in case you aren't familiar with it or using it, here is the link to Lynx Project Explorer.  This is a "must have"

It attaches to PBEdit, SED, JellyFishPro, etc.  I believe, many of the PowerBASIC add ons have Project Explorer functionality.  This Lynx though, it gives you the same functionality as Visual Studio 6, etc.  Click on a function, and you jump right to it.  Same with declares, Types, equates, etc., in and other headers.  Like I said, "must have".

Donald Darden:
I concur that the PowerBasic IDE is hardly the best choice if you want to work at managing any program development involving multiple files, what we would typically consider to be a Project.  But it is adequate for people who are accustomed to working with a single source file, or possibly just starting out.  It's main advantages is that it comes as part of the package, and it supports the built-in debugger.

The IDE gets relatively little attention from PowerBasic.  I've argued that it is the most intimate part of PowerBasic, and without a face lift, it is that much harder for anyone to appreciate when they see it.  I have noted that with each new update to the PowerBasic product, that the Help section has improved, and that has been a real benefit.

There are a few areas that I think have been sort of ignored.  One is the matter of templates.  It turns out that it is pretty easy to create customized templates for your source files that can serve to cause your new source files to come with all sorts of predefined settings in them.  Another is the limited coverage on resource files - if you know what resources are and how to use them, then fine, but PowerBasic isn't going to make their use and benefit obvious.  A third, the idea that beginners could benefit from a guided tour that teaches them the basics, is seriously absent.  A fourth involves PBForms and DDT, which I am not too thrilled with.  DDTs dumb down dialogs to the point where you might want to begin that way, but leave you no way to get into the customizing that is available under Windows.  PBForms is a tack-on product that doesn't really integrate in what I would consider an acceptable manner.  But that may be just me.

The main thing about BASIC is that it is not the optimum programming language for all applications, but it addresses elements related to many different uses more extensively than many competing languages do.  And the base of operators and data types provided with PowerBasic are sufficient to justify its claim as being one powerful version of BASIC.  And it is very rare to write code that is syntatically sound and not have it compile and work as expected, which means the compiler is rock solid.

What I am not thrilled about is that PowerBasic today is very much tied to either DOS or Windows.  The DOS version can be made to run under Linux in a DOS emulation, but it lacks the power of the more modern versions of PB/Win and PB/CC.  There have been hints that a PB/Linux version might someday appear, that would be essentially PB/CC, but adapted to Linux.  But that rumour has been circulating for several years now.  No sign yet if it might be true, or when it will happen.

Meanwhile, Microsoft continues to try and bring developers into its fold, and to sell everyone on its vision of what computing in the future will be.  I would have to say that most of the people here have, for one reason or another, decided that either they do not buy into Microsoft's vision, or do not feel that they want to be part of that future.  To these people, using PowerBasic is more like the type of program development that they believe in or want to be a part of.
But sometimes we see someone, already steeped in the Microsoft way, want to see PowerBasic become more like to what they are accustomed to or expect.

PowerBasic is in part a tool for empowerment.  You decided to use PowerBasic, you can also decide what IDE, Project Management, database, and other tools that best serve your needs and interests.  I'd like to be able to kiss Microsoft goodby someday, so my hope is that PB/Linux will someday surface.  But if it doesn't there is still FreeBasic and PureBasic, and other options.

Meanwhile, I am trying to decide what more I really need out of the PowerBasic compiler and debugger.  I've already got choices for the IDE and database management.  There is so much exciting work going on here with the present PowerBasic products, that I am hard pressed to think of anything else I need.

Theo Gottwald:
Just tried Lynx. Does it work with PrePBEd?
What F "L ... Code must I give in for PB 8 IDE?

The help file says that I have to keep single instance.
It says that it may get confused with multiple instances.
How serious is that problem?

Norbert Doerre:
It is good to see that there are some other programmers with similiar thoughts.
The reason why I'm using PB  - I think since 1994 - for Windows compatible code is not because I wanted to achieve a comfortable life but because my intention was and is to be independent at least from MS programming bloatware. A serious programmer cannot afford beeing permanently engaged in sniffing behind the next kink MS people insert in their latest updates, probably without knowing themselves about it.
In so far PB developers are doing right not to behave too progressively with updates. Also, users who are using at work a program fulfilling all their special needs won't even deny a program with a DOS screen. Professionals don't see at first a styled 3D user interface. Latter is merely something for children. But the tendency of MS is just to gain children and upgrowing young people for their philosopy of total coordination.
The consequence: Monopolism leads to less inovation.

PB has the built in qualities to offer a real alternative. For many programmers with the handycap using a non english keyboard C++ is terrible, for me, too. Overviewing a written code - even if You wrote it Yourself a year ago - is with C++ not quickly possible without large comment, because You might leave out a one character command or prefix anywhere in the code and You feel like a fool.
This does commenly NOT happen with PB, which is written in plain ascii code.
For some 'specialists' it seems to be a competition finding out the deeply implanted rescources of MS OS. Just this is the best indicator for an OS with many hidden features, which could change without announcement of their buiders. It is NOT a reliable base for programming seriously.

Developers of PB should only look at what could be done with official C++ and should copy it as far as really usable. They should simply forget their self made  Microsoft dependencies and create a PB version which could be harmonized with any OS.
Professionals world wide using MS OS are the minority, because MS don't care their needs, they only care for their benefit selling a controlled play console for upgrowing dummies, which is in fact the mass business.
I think You are already aware of the publication concerning VISTA from Auckland University. If not, have a look at it:
Peter Gutmann,
Last updated 28 December 2006

I cannot believe that this could be the future. It would be the end of any innovation.

The chance to become successful with PB world wide has never been as great as now. I hope developers will understand it.


Frederick J. Harris:
It would be nice if multiple instances of Lynx worked OK, but like you, I noticed that warning too and always refrained from using it that way Theo.  So I guess that is one of the negatives.  However, in my mind, the positives so far outweigh the negatives that I find the use of Lynx to be a very compelling proposition. 

The way I work with it is to start a file or project using PBEdit, just enough to create a *.bas file and save it.  Maybe add your includes in, cuz you eventually get to the screen with Lynx where it reads in all your includes.  Then I create the Lynx project.

Lately I've been working on projects where I'm using a grid custom control I built.  When I was first working mostly on the grid in the dll I used a Lynx project for that, and had the host (which I wasn't doing much with other than loading the dll on test runs) in PBEdit.  After having done most of the dll grid code I switched to using Lynx with the main host app and the dll code in PBEdit. So what works for me is to have whatever code files I'm doing the most work with open in Lynx due to the Project Explorer functionalities it provides, and less often referenced code open in PBEdit, Notepad, whatever.

If you switch between projects a lot you'll end up with code windows open in whatever editor you are using that rightly belong with a previously opened project.  These you can close.  Possibly you could keep them open but I'm very suspicious of computers and software and usually don't like to push everything to its limits all the time. 


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