From: Bob Leif
To: Richard Conn et al.
I suspect that you are correct that it is easier to create screens in Visual
Basic than Ada. I believe that this has much more to do with the environment
than the programming languages.
Last year, I proposed what I thought to be a simple solution, use XML or
HTML, which can now be extended to XHTML. That is HTML which is consistent
with being an XML application. There is only one problem with this approach.
Present browsers are designed for a client-server environment, rather than
being totally hosted on the client. The technical question is, what is the
simplest way to have an Ada program directly interact with a browser? Both
the program and the browser are located on the same CPU and using the same
peripherals and operating system.
At SIGAda '98, I strongly suggested that the Ada community be represented on
the World Wide Web Consortium. Presumably, the appropriate organization
would be the ARA. I still believe that the best way to achieve penetration
of the commercial market by Ada is through the use of Web technology and
standards. For instance, there are many HTML application builders that can
compete with Visual BASIC. Many embedded systems can be based on simple HTML
forms. They are certainly sufficient for my own applications. All we need is
a simple way to use this technology.
Parenthetically, the use of Web technology for client based applications is
a very simple and straight forward way to both build portable applications
and break Microsoft's control of the market. Amusingly, and to its credit,
Microsoft is making its own products do exactly what I suggested. Word,
Excel, etc files can be saved and operated on in HTML format.
In short, let us develop Ada technology based on Web standards.
1. R. C. Leif, “SIGAda ‘98, Workshop: How do We Expedite the Commercial Use
of Ada?.” Ada letters XIX, No 1 pp. 28-39 (1999).
From: Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Richard L. Conn
Sent: Friday, September 10, 1999 5:03 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Two interesting approaches to job hunting and more
And Visual Basic is a LOT easier ... my students all ran
their first GUI-oriented programs with various degrees of bells and whistles
after 1.5 hours of instruction and 1.5 hours of lab. At this point, I can't
feed them new ideas fast enough.
Right now, a number of our Ada people are taking courses in Visual Basic
(for certification). Even on the next ASE CDROM, I have an example of an
Ada engine (command-line oriented) running under a Visual Basic
front-end. So far, the Ada people are not leaving (airplanes are too much
but time will tell. So far, the blend of the two is a good thing.
Just some comments.
Richard Conn, ASE and PAL Manager