Concept First Blog

IT consultancy, web development, data analysis and application development

Useful Delphi Code

Just realised I haven’t written a blog post for 2.5 months, and I’ve just got back from a lunchtime surfing session, so I’m not really in the mood for real work. I thought I’d post some of my basic Delphi library code I use time and again in the hope it is of some use to other Delphi developers. Do what ever you want with it, I don’t guarantee its without bugs, but most of it has been used in production code for quite a long time.

Devco Wish List

This is my wishlist for Delphi when the new company running it is planning the next version. My requests are not large things (except maybe the last one), and are in order of priority.


  • Language construct: return
  • . operators on basic types
  • Include all source code (midas, dbExpress)
  • Ruby

Moved to Typo


I’ve moved my blog away from and on to a Typo installation hosted ourselves. Typo is a weblog application that runs on top of Ruby On Rails, the latest poster child of the open source community. I chose a rails based blog because I’ve been doing work with rails recently, I understand it, and I really like it (I’m half way through writing up an entry about why I like it).


The main reason is that blogger feed does not include comments people make. I personally read most blogs in an aggregator, and without comments being included, its only one half of the conversation.

For the last year we have been working on a product for a client that uses Queuing Theory to model how servers operate under load, an area known as ‘Capacity Management’. Performance agents log ongoing behaviour on the server, and then the results are plugged into various mathematical formulae that show how the server will work if your email doubles, your websites have 10 times as much load, etc.

Here at Concept First we have a data centre hosted server that handles email, ftp, and various client’s websites. In the spirit of ‘dog-fooding’, I’ve been running monitoring software on our hosted server, and building models of its spare capacity.


I’m writing this posting for two reasons. Firstly my company is currently engaged in a project with a client about getting more of their data onto their intranet based mapping tool, so I’ve spent the last 3 days researching and getting back up to speed on the industry.

Secondly my brother has just got a new job working as sales manager for a company providing GIS data, so I thought an introduction and overview of the subject might be of use to him. Apologises if I get too technical Mike.

Class RTTI

This post follows up my previous one about RTTI in Delphi, inspired by Hallvard’s 2 posts here and here, and covers some advanced RTTI features in Delphi that I haven’t seen mentioned anywhere else.