In a widely expected announcement, the US DoD announced today a revised
software engineering policy. This new policy (promoting the use of C
and hence referred to as "the C mandate") should not be seen as
"dropping the Ada mandate"; during the press conference, DoD officials
repeatedly stressed that the Mandate is a complete success and that the
revision is merely intended to ease enforcement.
A few hours later, Microsoft Corp. announced the release of MS Visual
Ada++ and confirmed that all its C products would be abandonned
immediately. CEO Bill Gates declared "we want to stay one step ahead
of the market, and will remain a profitable company even under attack
from the Departments of Justice and Defense". Industry observers
believe that the Windows 97 delay is due to a change of language in
the operating system APIs.
The AdaIC (Ada Information Clearinghouse, sponsored by the DoD) will
become the CIC (closely allied to the Atlanta-based CDC). The CIC will
spend $15 million annually to expand the existing C industry; $1 million
will be devoted to the creation of a C Web site, and $2 million will be
awarded to encourage the development of Fortran-to-C reengineering
tools. The AJPO (Ada Joint Program Office, sponsored by the DoD) will
give up on compiler validation, to concentrate its activities on the
standardization of debuggers, since that tool helps discover 90% of C
errors, and C programmers have been found spending more than 80% of
their time with debuggers.
The Ada Home (http://www.adahome.com/) will transmogrify into the C Hut
or C Cavern (other names are under consideration; Internet domain name
to be announced when secured).
In unrelated announcements, senior Rational scientist Grady Booch
unveiled new UML extensions modeling bit shifting and void pointers of
the C language, NASA delayed the space station Freedom another 50 years
due to the need to add screens and debuggers in all critical as well as
non-critical systems, and Lloyds decided to deny insurance coverage to
any property containing computer devices.
An anonymous official summarized the events of the day as "Ada Dumped,
To obtain detailed references, or to add fuel to the fire, please contact
us at the email address indicated below.
Magnus Kempe -- [log in to unmask] -- http://www.adahome.com/
Editor and Publisher, The Home of the Brave Ada Programmers