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Sender: "Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)" <[log in to unmask]>
X-To: John McCormick <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2001 15:15:37 -0500
Reply-To: Ben Brosgol <[log in to unmask]>
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From: Ben Brosgol <[log in to unmask]>
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> Currently at the University of Northern Iowa, students learn Ada in their
> first and second programming courses.  The third course they take is
> "Object-Oriented Programming with Java".  And the fourth course is
> Algorithms.  In the algorithms course, students may use any language they
> want.  Both the OO/Java course and Algorithms course are taught by
anti-Ada
> faculty.  This semester I learned through a student taking the Algorithms
> course that no student is using Java.  A few are using C or C++ , one is
> using PERL , and the rest are using Ada.  I find fact that none are using
> Java particularly enlightening as Java is the last language with which
they
> had significant programming work.
>
> Just a lone but intriguing data point.

Interesting data, John- thanks for sending the information.

But it looks like the message could also have been titled as "Students
prefer Ada over C and C++".  In an Algorithms course (which presumably deals
with data structures also :-) many of Java's deficiencies would become
apparent fairly quickly: no enumeration types, all composite objects go on
the heap, no generics, weakly-typed scalars, ....  What is interesting is
that students preferred Ada over the more commercially-popular C and C++.  A
university where students make choices based on fitness to purpose versus
applicability in the immediate job market?  Is there something in the water
in northern Iowa that induces such behavior? :-)

Ben Brosgol
Ada Core Technologies
79 Tobey Road; Belmont, MA 02478; USA
+1-617-489-4027 (voice);  +1-617-489-4009 (FAX)
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