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"Carlisle, Martin, Dr, DFCS" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Carlisle, Martin, Dr, DFCS
Wed, 14 Jun 2000 08:35:35 -0600
text/plain (158 lines)
Point this person to -- lots of schools
teach Ada.  Another important point is that it has to be a LOT cheaper to
train someone in Ada than to rewrite 140,000 LOC.

Some engineering schools teach FORTRAN (I've not seen it in a CS major, but
I'm still familiar with parallelization research in FORTRAN), but no
self-respecting Comp Sci department I know teaches COBOL anymore (or, if
they do outside of some sort of history course, i.e., "this is what life in
CS was like when dinosaurs roamed the earth and we had to program in
languages that don't even have proper grammars" then I don't respect them


Dr. Martin C. Carlisle
Assistant Professor of Computer Science
United States Air Force Academy
DISCLAIMER:  My opinions are my own, and may not be
shared the US Air Force Academy or US Government.

-----Original Message-----
From: Wisniewski, Joseph (N-COMSYS) [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent: Wednesday, June 14, 2000 7:42 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Future of Ada -- Not enough "Ada people"

Re; the part about not enough Ada people out there. I'd like to respond to
this in detail, but I am VERY curious about everyone else's opinion
on this.

Some quick rambling thoughts/questions:

Why does this seem to hit Ada so hard, and not other "legacy" languages?
Is COBOL or FORTRAN still being taught in schools?

Why is it assumed somehow that a good Ada engineer, had to have been born
the knowledge of the language. I've worked with plenty of poor Ada engineers
and good C/C++ engineers.

Maybe there is some "under the sheets" recognition that a good Ada engineer
there through Ada, not entirely because of, but "with" Ada.

This, I believe, may be one of the most important issues for us to address;
that is, I'll
take a good engineer who knows any combination of languages and make him/her
a better engineer with Ada.

Maybe this is all due to the insane "keyword mentality" that exists in the
"engineering human resources" world.

I guess a corollary of this point is that, just because someone has done Ada
does NOT
make them a good engineer.


> ----------
> From:         David Botton[SMTP:[log in to unmask]]
> Reply To:     David Botton
> Sent:         Wednesday, June 14, 2000 9:02 AM
> To:   [log in to unmask]
> Subject:      Fw: Future of Ada
> This is a job for Team-Ada   :-)
> David Botton
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Jimmy Tucker" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Cc: "Bruce Espedal" <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Wednesday, June 14, 2000 8:43 AM
> Subject: Future of Ada
> > Sir,
> > My organization, the Defense Automatic Addressing System Center, a field
> > level activity of lthe Defense Logistics Agency, has an application
> running in
> > ADA.  We have two ADA programmers, one full-time, and one part-time,
> assigned to
> > this project.  This application has 140,000 lines of ADA code, and
> provides for
> > the editing, verification and routing of DoD logistics transactions to
> the
> > appropriate destination, based upon business rules described in DoD
> 4000.25-M-x,
> > and Service and Agency specific business rules.  Upper management is
> proposing
> > to rewrite this application in C++, as we have a greater base of C++
> expertise,
> > and one of our ADA programmers is going to retire within the next few
> years.
> > Our chief of programming is not too sure of the longevity of the ADA
> > environment, and is considering this move to C++.  What I am trying to
> assist
> > our ADA programmers in, is to research ADA and its viability for the
> future.  I
> > agree with our ADA programmers, and feel that this mission critical
> system, and
> > the concern of migration to C++ might allow for errors creep into the
> 140,000
> > lines of existing code, and the associated maintenance considerations
> for
> the
> > average of 152 changes per year to the code.  Concern centers around the
> error
> > minimization that the ADA compiler supports, and the extensive testing
> that
> > might be required to support similar error minimization in the C++ code.
> > Concern is also in the area of obtaining another ADA programmer to
> replace
> the
> > current organic government ADA programmers.  Contracting out would be a
> > solution, but there is a concern of what is available to us.  In order
> for
> us to
> > have a viable resource, it takes about a year for an ADA programmer to
> become
> > effective in our environment, as the individual must become
> knowledgeable
> with
> > DoD logistics business rules, and the quirks with Army, Navy, Ari Force,
> and
> > Marine unique logic.  Any way we go, we will still have this problem,
> except
> > with a contractor, the likelyhood of maintaining a longterm programmer
> in
> ADA is
> > questionable, and we would have to start the training process all over
> again.
> > Thus, the crux of upper management's concern.
> > The chief of programming has the following question that we must answer:
> > 'Is ADA going away in the next few years (5-10), and if not - prove it."
> Would
> > you be able to provide your insight as to the longevity of ADA, and any
> concerns
> > for migration to a C++ environment, such as costs to maintain C++ versus
> ADA,
> > testing requirements for C++ versus ADA, etc.  We're looking for
> ammunition to
> > prove our case for ADA.  HELP!!!!!
> >
> > Jimmy R. Tucker
> > 5250 Pearson Road, Bldg 207, Area C
> > WPAFB, OH  45433-5328
> > Phone: (937) 656-3747
> >             DSN 986-3747
> > Email: [log in to unmask]
> >