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"Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)" <[log in to unmask]>
"Carlisle, Martin, Dr, DFCS" <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 6 Apr 2000 20:42:09 -0400
Allan Spurr <[log in to unmask]>
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Allan Spurr <[log in to unmask]>
Advanced Concept Center
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I too am just giving my opinion.

Several years ago I was tasked with investigating and implementing a project in
the DII COE.  On the surface when you read the documents and specs and related
material DII COE sounds like a panacea for all software developers everywhere.
It is supposed to provide a kernel, which among other things, is supposed to
perform installs in a common way, specs that specify where data, binaries, etc
are supposed to go, and a set of tools for doing all of this.  "Segments"  are
required to pass "Ridged" tests and interface requirements before being released
for other DOD contractors to use.  In my experience many of the required
functions and some of the basic functionality, was missing or non-functional.
When I called the DII COE office to report problems and request a new release
date I was generally told that money was currently not available to fix the
items but that we could send them money, through whatever internal government
transfer procedure, and get it fixed.  When I inquired about segments that were
certified but did not work, I was directed to the original developing company
that submitted it and told I could contract them to make it work the way it was
supposed to.  Our DOD government sponsor was pushing hard release dates on us
but the DII COE was missing release dates by anywhere from 6 to 12 months and
dropping all support for earlier versions.  They laid out the requirements but
didn't back it up.

I don't know if things have changed much in the last two years.  Anyone working
on DII COE required projects anymore?

The long and the short of it is that mandating DII COE is a sure way to see it
die.  It is a someone's idea of perfect software development environment and it
is being crammed down contractors throats.

Thank God I went to the commercial side of the business ;-)

O/BTW  I borrowed the tag line at the end and from time to time I get a student
who sees it and  asks me for more information on what Ada is.  Just doing my
small part for the effort!!

"Carlisle, Martin, Dr, DFCS" wrote:

> The DII COE is the Defense departments "Common Operating Environment".  Each
> of the 3 services (Army, Navy/Marines, Air Force) was doing software
> acquisition in a vacuum, making it hard for the 3 services to have their
> computers talk to each other and participate in joint operations.  To remedy
> this, the COE is supposed to severely limit the platforms you can use for
> development.  It specifies things like, what operating system can I use,
> what programming languages can I use, and in theory provides a large library
> of reusable code, common installations, etc.  It has a friend called the
> "Joint Technical Architecture", which specifies web browsers, web
> development software, office applications, etc.
> In my opinion (note strongly I am exercising my academic freedom here, and
> not speaking on behalf of the Air Force Academy, US Air Force, or DoD), this
> will be almost as successful as the Ada mandate.  The COE has Windows and
> Unix and all sorts of things that could never really get along anyway.
> Nonetheless, I do think it is important to remedy this blatant error in
> their document, which will undoubtedly be used by non-technical bureaucrats
> to make all sorts of decisions that should be technically done.
> --Martin
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Tom Moran [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Thursday, April 06, 2000 3:16 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: DII COE bars Ada -> Java compilation
>   For those of us in the civilian sector, who or what is "DII COE"
> and what is the significance of this?
>   As pointed out, using the Java language, as opposed to any other,
> does not prevent intentional security attacks.  One could argue
> that using the Java language, as opposed to Ada, makes unintentional
> problems *more* likely.
>   I would think the author has shown himself, very publicly,
> incompetent at his current job, and should be transferred elsewhere.
>   (Assume 50 years ago someone directed "Submarines shall not use
> nuclear reactors because they need lead shielding, which is heavy
> and will prevent rapid surfacing in case of emergency."
> Would GE & Westinghouse & Adm Rickover have accepted such a
> ruling, merely grumbling to themselves?)

"E"commerce is not life and death. If it was, it would be coded in Ada.

Allan R. Spurr      Instructor/Consultant
Lockeed Martin Advanced Concepts Center
640 Freedom Business Center, King of Prussia, Pa.  19406
Voice Mail:  (610) 992-6206,  Fax:  (215) 396-2264
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