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David Botton <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Thu, 16 Sep 1999 09:26:44 -0700
text/plain (113 lines)
--- "Robert C. Leif" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> From: Bob Leif

> 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.

No questions asked. I know people have expressed that
VB is integrated with the Visuals, but I argue no more
then Ada is. It is not beyond reason that a Visual Ada
could be created by closer integration of a GUI
Enviornment and a compiler. It is not far off before
Delphi enviornments for Ada will be available, and
Open Source at that.

> Present browsers are designed for a client-server
> environment, rather than
> being totally hosted on the client.

Not true, IE was designed for control by either side
completely. See the COM examples I posted. More will
be coming soon, but I am under the gun for a number of
projects right now and I may not get to them until
after Sig'Ada (including some Ada COM related
projects, keep an eye out for ACT's GNAT with some
major COM/DCOM/OLE/ActiveX support and more soon)

> 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.

The easiest is if you are using IE on WinNT/9X.

If you need browser and OS independance, it would be
very possible to create a simple HTML server in Ada
that could be accessed as "http://localhost:XXXX"
where XXXX is a port the server would use. You could
then provide basic page server and pseudo CGI gateway
to the Ada code with in the same server to get
lightning fast responce to HTML form use. Then use
JavaScript and create Gif images on the fly to give
dynamic flavor to everything.

> 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 agree strongly with your view.

> 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.

I disagree, the best way to hit the commercial market
is by showing how easy it is to take control of Win32,
COM/DCOM and any other MS buz word from Ada.

It may be true that Ada may never be heavily used in
that domaine, but my experience with the commercial
world and its managers has told me that they don't
know what is flying on the technical end 90% of the
time, but whatever looks good is good.

> All we need is
> a simple way to use this technology.

1) On Win32, COM bindings to the browser
2) On client/server enviornments CGI apps in Ada (I
have written a number)
3) On other platforms or with Netscape, a simple httpd
server running in client space with dynamicly created
web pages

> break Microsoft's control of the market.

I think we in the Ada world need to think more about
how to ride the MS wave and use its marketing to our

I am no MS fan, and I use FreeBSD for my personal use
because of my experiences as a C++ developer with MS.
As an Ada developer, I kiss the grimy feet and sing
their praises so that Ada can make a stand and show
off what it can do to bring reliability and quality to
the world of Win32 programming, where Quality is Job

> In short, let us develop Ada technology based on Web
> standards.

If you or others can put in some time, I think that a
simple httpd server in user land can spring board big
time. I would be more then willing to kick in some
effort, but getting Ada to rock on Win32 is where I am
going to concentrate for some time.

David Botton

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