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Thread: Lazarus 0.9.24 is arriving

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    Programmer giorgiotani's Avatar
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    Hi, for developers interesting in Delphi, ObjectPascal and FreePascal there is a good new: Lazarus 0.9.24 is arriving and it seem bringing a lot of improvements both in VLC (GUI-related library) and in terms of updates to the integrated FPC compiler.
    In those days are arriving installable packages of the IDE for the various platform supported, you can check them on:
    http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?group _id=89339

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    Programmer Bulat Ziganshin's Avatar
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    what this mean for PEA, in which areas it may be improved?

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    Programmer giorgiotani's Avatar
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    Since now I standardized PeaZip development on good old 0.9.20 (I had time to edxplore it's pros and cons quite well) but upcoming version should improve many areas filling some voids and fixing some issue.
    It's too soon to speak, I would like to take some time to make real experience on the new release, however areas I expect most improvements for PeaZip are:
    - next GTK2 version of PeaZip in Linux should no longer have GUI issue (expecially in stringgrid) and behave consistently on different distributions, a very nice thing for Linux user since GTK2 interface has more usable dialog than GTK1, and some distros are starting to not install by default GTK1 libraries; BTW QT support had made progress too so I'll see if it's mature enough to build QT version of the program (more liked by many KDE users);
    - UTF-8 support had made progresses, I hope it's finally in a status which will allow a quite painless process of internationalization of texts (and uniform support for special characters in GUI and program's internals);
    - better handling of images, I'll try if it's feasible/productive to replace bitmaps with png for a smoother GUI look and feel and smaller theme sizes; about support for older 8 bit color depth I don't know if there were advances (it was requested by an user in PeaZip's tracker);
    - the FPC compiler was substantially updated, so I'll benchmark if there were speed/memory improvements in PEA routines.

    I'll also see if I can install it under a MacOS machine, but all those things will take some time and testing...

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    Thank you very much for your work, giorgiotani!

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    Nania Francesco's Avatar
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    One question:
    C++ versus Lazarus in math calculation and other?

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    Programmer Bulat Ziganshin's Avatar
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    c++ compilers generates fastest programs. you should make billion-$ investments to develop the same optimizing technologies

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    Member Fallon's Avatar
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    This could be of interest for BeeGui as well, which is also programmed in freepascal:
    http://www.beegui.org/

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    Programmer giorgiotani's Avatar
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    Lazarus uses FreePascal Compiler (FPC); it seem generating quite efficient executables for math calculations in terms of speed and memory usage.
    gcc and related projects have probably more resources and contributors, and may be faster to implement optimization for new technologies, and of course there are strongly optimized c/c++ compilers which can do even better (i.e. usually Intel compiler beat any other compiler on Intel platforms).
    However when you have to compute a well known algorithm which is performance critical, it's probably even better to use a good reference ASM implementation which has proven to be the smartest way to compute the thing on a given processor, and it's very improbable than any compiler will genearate a better code than the reference one; that's why all performance savvy IDE let use ASM, like Lazarus and most C/C++ compilers, to put the hands at the lowest level.
    The obvious drawbacks are that as processors evolves, you may need a better reference implementation, so you don't just need to recompile the high level code with a smarter compiler, but you may need to change the ASM part (or worse it may be very efficient on some commercial processor and less efficient on other ones); and the most obvous issue is that the ASM will not work on a different families of processors so it will hamper the portability of the project.
    PeaZip uses a IMHO good cryptographic library (linked on the project's website), good for most of Pascal dialects, and it uses performance critical parts written in ASM (some translated in Pascal to ensure portability out of x86 world) which compares quite well (the tests are on the maintainer's website) with reference implementations of same algorithms.

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    Programmer giorgiotani's Avatar
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    btw, after some testing last night :
    1 - the executables starts from a very big size, but after strip/upx are significantly smaller than the one generated with old version;
    2 - bitmap handling totally changed... it will take some time to me to work with it at best and convert old graphic, but probably will allow using png, so less size and better graphic, and with point 1 will help in containing package size;
    3 - various noticeable improvements here and there, now dialog icons are better designed and finally select folder dialog allows "create new folder" which really improves usability for the application.

    At first sight this update seem a major one!

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    Grazie Giorgio Ciao!
    Thanks! Hi!

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