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Home: Development: Papers

Borland is dead: Long live to Borland

Marco's report on Borland name change to Inprise Corporation

Written on April 30, 1998

So it happened after all. We've been under fear that Borland might have gone bankrupt in the past few years, or that other companies might have bought it. We were all fearing Borland death, and the unfolding of the products we love, starting with Delphi, the reincarnation of Turbo Pascal and its glory.

So it happened, but what happened was really a strange event: no one is going to buy us, we are just buying ourselves! The Borland name was too connected with the Quattro and the Paradox kind of products, that while reinventing the company the management decided to reinvent its name as well. Nothing to say, from a manager point-of-view.

But all those programmers who've been connected to Borland and its products for years, like me, will probably miss the Borland name, the idea of the Borland barbarians, and the Borland style and spirit. Most of this style was actually gone in the last few years, and the main connection left to this pioneering spirit was the name, and this is gone now.

The Announcement

On April 29, 1998 Borland has officially announced the name change. According to CEO Dell Yocam the reasons include:
  • Borland's growth in corporate and enterprise business (now at more than 65 percent of the company's revenues)
  • the integration of Visigenic Software and its CORBA tools
  • the improved relatiohsip with partners and amd suppliers
The company will actually retain the Borland brand name for the development environments (JBuilder, Delphi, C++Builder), while the enterprise products (VisiBroker, Entera, AppCenter) will use the new Inprise brand name.

You can read the full details on the new company web site at . But don't miss the animation at the former Borland site.

Internal Comments

On Borland (pardon, Inprise) site you'll also find a few comments from long-time borlandeers. Here I've reported a few excerpts.

Zack Urlocker writes (out of his heart): I've been with Borland nearly eight years and I think of myself as a Borlander true and true . Then he comments (as a manager): I'm personally very enthusiastic about our "new" company. I believe Inprise Corporation has the right products and services to serve our customers and to continue to grow. I believe our name builds on the Borland and Visigenic reputations and now properly reflects our focus to help customers integrate the enterprise. The final comment is actually cute: The only thing left to do is figure out how to update all the Borland t-shirts I've collected over the years.

David I has a new and legthy column with a very nice report explaining (probably for the first time) where Borland name came from, quoting an email from Borland founder Philippe Kahn. But then he comments: I've said many times that I came to Borland to be a part of the changing face of development. In my 13 years here we have certainly done our share and more. . He adds more descriptions on the name and paradigm changes, and fianlly adds: As with every other change that I have seen over the last 13 years, I say RIGHT ON, and to quote John Belushi from the movie Animal House, "Let's do it".

I think these comments underline what every Borlendeer feels: it is a sad day, but if this is for the sake of Borland and its outstanding products, let's do it!

External Comments

I still haven't heard many, but I'll add them to the article as soon as I see anyone I feel worth. And if you have any comment, drop me a note.

Articles on:

What's in a Name

In...what? Inprise!

According to official sources "Inprise" is a short for "INtegrated INterconnected INternet-base INtranet-focused enterPRISE". What's left is the initial ""IN" (which I guess can assume different meanings) and the final "PRISE".

OK, any guess if there is a real reason for the new name? Does it sound good to you? I think it is a nice short name, but it doesn't sound too computer-related: maybe this is on purpose!

Good luck Inprise...good luck good-old Borland!