Fri, 9 Jan 1998 13:40:00 -0500
Roepe, Marsha wrote:
> To this completely unbiased group of professionals:
> I'm working on a trade study comparing ada 95 to c++. One big issue is
> availability of trained Ada programmmers... ready to go OO!
> Are Ada programmers really that hard to find?
Well, I'm gonna get on my soapbox here for a minute :-)
Rather than asking if Ada programmers are hard to find, one should
ask if Ada programmers are that hard to train. Of course it's nice
to find employees that are already up to speed on the tools you're
going to be using, but that's only a short-term issue. Of far
greater import is finding competent developers who can learn and
utilize the tools and language of your project. My employer,
Lockheed Martin M&DS, is constantly searching for people to fill
its employment needs--there really is a computer skills shortage!
I assert that Ada is no more difficult to learn than other programming
languages, and its built-in support for software engineering and OO
features in fact facilitate the establishment of good software
engineering practices, versus the naive learning of syntax and
semantics. (But others, such as Mike Feldman, can elaborate on
this far better than I.)
I find it much more critical to find people who can, or have the
potential for, taking responsibility for the design and development
of major systems and their constituents--and do it well. They
can be trained in Ada 95 or C++ or whatever, it's the software
engineering skills, and the ability to apply them, that are critical.
And as far as programming languages are concerned, Ada 95 is well-
suited for the expression of well-engineered software.
I do certainly run into those who refuse to have anything to do
with Ada, for which the most frequent reason cited is "it won't
help my career." I express surprise that their career goal is
to retire as a 62 1/2 year old C programmer.
> What's your thoughts?
> Marsha S. Roepe
> DCMC Lockheed Martin Orlando
> Industrial / Software Engineer
> (407) 306 - 5448
Marc A. Criley
Chief Software Architect
Lockheed Martin ATWCS Program
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