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Hal Hart <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Fri, 20 Nov 1998 10:06:22 -0800
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Dave Wood (Aonix) wrote:
>Jim Hassett wrote:
>> >I'd suggest first looking at the products and the suppliers
>> >that match your planned architecture.  There are lots of new
>> >Ada compilers out there for most major architectures.  If
>> >the products look good and the suppliers seem reliable, I
>> >don't see the risk for Ada to be much different from
>> >anything else.
>> I agree, but there seems to be a perception among many that with the
>> changed DoD policy, the Ada market is going to shrink to the point
>> where there will not be adequate resources for Ada vendors to
>> create and maintain good products.  We need to counter that
>> impression by pointing out the many uses of Ada that have never had
>> anything to do with the so-called DoD Ada "mandate", as well as
>> ongoing and new use in defense and other areas. Your information
>> helps a great deal.
>Others may disagree, but I don't see a big connection between
>"shrinking market" and "end of mandate".  The mandate was not
>well enforced anyway.  The major shrinkage occurred in the
>years preceding the end of the mandate, along with the declining
>defense budget.
>I surveyed my customers prior to the end of the mandate,
>and 85% of them said they use Ada because they think it is
>superior, 15% because the were required to use it.  The
>implication is that dropping the mandate would have at
>most a 15% hit.  In reality, I'd guess the hit was much
>lower than that, and in at least some product areas, there
>has not been a hit at all.  But then, I don't have a view
>into the experiences of the other suppliers out there.
>Anyway, that's yesterday's news.  The mandate tumbled, what,
>a year ago?  And it was smelling of death for a year before
>that.  Whatever damage would be done is already done, and
>most of us are still here.

Amazingly, I talked to several of our vendors at the SIGAda'98 conference
last week, and every one I talked to said their Ada business was up in
1998, their best year ever.  I don't know if some of these were uttered
more intended as self-fulfilling prophesies, and I certainly didn't ask to
see their financial reports, and this was not a comprehensive "survey," but
I certainly didn't get the impression from anyone that they were going away
or even shrinking.

Wouldn't it be neat if all our Ada vendors exhibited at shows like STC &
Embedded Systems & ICSE & NAECON & the SEI & OOPSLA & the other object
shows with a panel on each booth being a brightly colored graph of Ada
sales over the years, all strictly increasing curves, and a big
title/banner atop each saying "Our best year ever for Ada sales!"    --hh