Xojo around the World
Meeting Xojo Developers in New Zealand
Issue: 12.2 (March/April 2014)
Author: Markus Winter
Author Bio: Markus is a Molecular Biologist who taught himself REALbasic programming in 2003 to let the computer deal with some exceedingly tedious lab tasks. Some call it lazy, he thinks it smart. He still thinks of himself as an advanced beginner at best.
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Article Length (in bytes): 6,823
Starting Page Number: 29
Article Number: 12206
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Excerpt of article text...
What do you do if you have travelled halfway round the World from Germany to New Zealand and finally gotten over your jet lag? Well, join the local Xojo User Group in their monthly get together of course! So on Tuesday evening, I went to the meeting of the Auckland Xojo User Group, which was held in the boardroom of the Empire Tavern, a grand old building that still survives among the tall skyscrapers of the Auckland central business district (see Figure 1).
Wayne Golding is the organizer, and when I arrived he was busy setting up the computer equipment and testing his video-conferencing setup. Nominally there are 20 members in the group, and Wayne had arranged for Christian Schmitz from Monkeybread Software to join us via Skype. But as it is still the big summer holiday time here, I wasn't sure what to expect. In the end, it was just three of us (Sean Clancy, Wayne, and myself). Christian and Wayne had a mix-up with the dates (Germany is 12 hours behind, not ahead of New Zealand) so the Skype conference never materialized—but all that didn't matter at all. I would have to think long and hard to remember a time when I had a more interesting and pleasant evening.
As we had never met before, naturally we started the evening by telling a bit about ourselves and what we were working on. The three of us are quite different and work on very different software projects. Sean (Figure 2) is the artistic type, a professional musician who toured the world and got started with REALbasic when he was living in Poland for five years (you might remember that Real Software once sold 50,000 licenses to schools in Poland).
He got quite a laugh out of us when he declared with conviction that all programmers must be musicians at heart as music and maths are so very close, so that music is easy for us. For the last four years he has been working on "Guitar SightReader Toolbox," a beautifully crafted and graphically-heavy software for musicians—a toolbox that has more bells and whistles than a one man band (http://www.prolevelguitar.com/).
Wayne (Figure 3) is more the business-type: confident, relaxed, and one of the nicest and most helpful guys you could hope to meet. (Thanks again for picking up my tab!) He is working on a database-driven telephone interface software for call centers and accountant offices that is cleanly laid out and is amazingly functional—"software for grown-ups" as Sean succinctly noted.
When he demonstrated his product and called his mobile from within the software (and then called back) we were wowed by it. It recognizes the phone number and displays the caller's details and history before you even pick up the phone! Despite its seeming simplicity, it has depth in functionality. Everyone can make that interface, but probably few can do what lies below.
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