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Subject:
From:
Tucker Taft <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Tucker Taft <[log in to unmask]>
Date:
Mon, 11 Nov 1996 16:58:09 -0500
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>   ... Nevertheless, I still believe the recommendation to
>   abandon the Ada policy is just plain wrong.

I'm surprised you equate "narrow the mandate to focus on
warfighting systems, and fix the waiver process" with "abandon the
Ada policy."  The bulk of the Ada code in the DoD is in the warfighting
domain.  The compliance with the Ada mandate outside the warfighting
domain has been rather poor.  The compliance within has been quite
good, with the bulk of the new code being written in Ada, and with
50M SLOC already written.

If anything, taking an over-pessimistic view of the NRC recommendations
might produce a self-fulfilling prophecy, namely that it will help
those who chose to interpret them as recommending that the DoD
abandon Ada completely.

In fact, the NRC recommendations are an attempt to balance the
realities of the modern software world with the DoD's special
requirements in certain domains.  In these domains, DoD should
be expected to lead; in other domains, where the DoD requirements more
nearly match those of multinational corporations, the DoD should be prepared
to learn what they can from the best commercial practices of such
corporations, without necessarily creating an arbitrary impediment to
technology sharing.  Ada might still be the best choice for a particular
project in these other domains, but a mandate to use Ada for all 3GL
development in these domains is not justified, given the overriding
requirement that the DoD capitalize on commercial technology in
these domains of commonality.

>   Richard

-Tuck

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