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A couple of days ago I got an email from Jim Duffy about his VFP training classes. It got me thinking: why would a .NET guy and VB.NET MVP still be doing some Visual FoxPro training? So I called him.

Jim and I talked for an hour. We caught up on a few things in the VFP world, some projects we are working on, and most of all why Jim is still teaching VFP. After all, has he not heard about VFP being dead? (tongue firmly planted in cheek)

This might surprise you, but Jim is dedicated to teaching people Visual FoxPro (and integration with SQL Server) as long as there are people who need to learn it. Contrary to some people in our community, Jim and I feel there will be new people learning VFP for years to come. Why? One word, turnover. It is the same reason people are learning a lesser used language like COBOL or an orphaned language like Visual Basic v6.0: there are projects that use it and people leave these projects. Companies will need to replaced the developers with someone new. The new person might know Visual FoxPro, or might not know Visual FoxPro. Either way, their experience might need some enhanced training. Then there are companies like mine who will use VFP for new projects because it meets the client’s needs. If VFP developers become harder to find, I will create new ones as I need them. This is why Jim will be teaching VFP for years to come.

I think this is great. If I look back over the last 12 years, I can count on one hand the number of companies I know about that regularly taught VFP here in the USA, and another hand to count the companies outside of the USA. It is nice to know at least a few companies see this niche opportunity, and are planning on continuing this service to the Fox Community. I see this as a smart business decision.

So if you want to get some hands-on-training from a long time VFP’er, give Jim a call (takenote.com). He has some classes coming up May 21-25, 2007. I used his training material to help a developer get up to speed seven years ago. I was talking to this developer a couple of weeks ago and he mentioned how great it was to learn from me while we worked together on a project. He also mentioned how my mentoring, the App Dev videos by Jim Booth, and the TakeNote training materials really helped him quickly come up to speed on VFP. It was nice to know years later how this impacted his career.

Jim has updated his training materials for VFP 9, so now is the time to get in on his latest round of classes.


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