The nature of Microsoft has been changing, moving into areas that
are typically what one would think of as "Ada" areas. Some examples
I've observed recently:
1. Entering the embedded domains, where multiple CPUs are being
addressed (moving outside the Intel-only sector) - I've mentioned
the various new mobile computing platforms (Pocket PCs, Auto PCs,
Tablet PCs), and there are thousands of developers creating
for them using Visual Basic and Visual C++
2. Entering the software engineering domains, where concepts like the CMM
and NASA's Software Engineering Lab are expressed in the same breath
as Visual Basic; I visited MicroCenter this weekend and found 8
Engineering books on the shelves, 5 of which were from Microsoft Press;
it is interesting to note the "Code Complete" by Steve McConnell (an
editor of IEEE Software) is a Microsoft Press book that includes
comparisons between languages, including Visual Basic and Ada; "Code
Complete" has received positive reviews from IEEE Computer, IEEE Micro,
Windows Tech Journal, PC Week, PC Magazine, Software Development, and
3. Microsoft has become a unifying influence, whether good or bad, in the
software community, crossing domains such as embedded systems,
web-based commerce, medical systems, DoD systems, and commercial
there is an analogy here to ancient Rome, again with good and bad
that built a common highway system and provided a common language for
time (that still influences languages, like English, that we use today)
Several people on this list have expressed an intolerance to Microsoft
there is an analogy here again to those people conquered by ancient Rome),
unlike ancient Rome, we can better our position by working with Microsoft
than turning our backs on them. We as a community are divided enough
drawing lines based on one company.
It's not a single individual who can hold back the "Ada community" -- but
a lack of being willing to listen to other ideas, and a community culture
is not actively following technology advancements and trends can hold us
eventually kill us.
Richard Conn, Principal Investigator
From: Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of [log in to unmask]
Sent: Sunday, July 30, 2000 12:19 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: The Pocket PC - a platform where Ada *should* have a
[log in to unmask] wrote:
>I obviously don't agree with your stance, Mike, and I feel that
>positions and attitudes such are yours are holding back the Ada
>community to a large degree, and they have been for many years.
>As a consequence, Ada is moving from an "also ran" to a "never ran"
>in several high-investment domains. Many of the ideas behind Ada
>are sound and of value, but they are being hidden from many elements
>of the software development community because of the enormous thrust
>in these domains and the lack of an Ada presence there.
Mike cannot hold back "the Ada community", as you can proceed with
whatever people agree with your campaign. If that quantity is not
sufficient to achieve critical mass, perhaps you are not on the more
productive track. I know that Mike has been around the barn with
Microsoft, as I have posted on the wall his tale of an exchange
with a Microsoft recruiter regarding the state of computer education.
That dialogue has made me even more resolute (if that is possible)
to emphasize other computer vendors.
If you are successful, however, it will change the nature of Microsoft.