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Hal Hart <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Thu, 23 Jan 1997 11:37:38 -0800
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Again, I am with Ed.  In fact, I made the decision to include those
ancient charts (at least one set of them) in the initial version of
the Ada Advocacy Package (AAP).  My reasoning was that I had in my
hands nothing of comparable careful technical detail for Ada 95, and
until I did, this was better than nothing -- and especially useful for
those for whom Ada 83 is still a more serious consideration than Ada
95 (plz see next paragraph before going unstable on this point :-).
Engle's "Why Use Ada" charts seem very strong for management/business
factors, but I didn't find any PURELY TECHNICAL competitors as
thorough as Ed's.  The objectives of the AAP include providing
different types and different styles of ammunition for different types
of audiences, including mgmt AND technical targets.

I think you might be surprised at, for how many people in industry,
Ada 95 is not yet regarded as "here," or at least for whom the
maturity of Ada 83 compilers is finally a positive in people's
thinking (& it's not for Ada 95).  Ada 83 is still a player!  We all
had good success with Ada 83, and for many systems the things Ada 83
was uniquely good at are still discriminators  --  still the winning
discriminators in some cases!!  Ada 95 may just be "icing on the cake"
in some situations, but Ada 83's maturity may outweigh the icing.

My real hope in placing these charts in the initial AAP was to
stimulate someone to submit an ANALOGOUS COMPARATIVE pro-Ada
Ada95-based briefing.  The whole AAP at this point in time is at a
"Peer Review" stage, meaning we are seeking improvements.  We
"keepers" of it will essentially ALWAYS welcome improvements.

One of the things not really there yet is an upfront set of
INSTRUCTIONS overviewing the structure of the AAP and how to use and
TAILOR/ADAPT it for different basic audiences & situations -- the
default tailoring process.  To us long-time advocates, little such
instruction is needed (maybe we don't need most of the objects in the
AAP because we already have proven stuff we use -- submit to me or
Rick, plz, if you do have stuff you regard as better than what's in
the AAP :-), but one of my objectives is to make EVERY ADA LOVER A
WELL-ARMED ADVOCATE FOR ADA.  Lots of Ada lovers and not trained to be
effective "salesmen" (ain't that the characterization of the whole Ada
industry for 15 years?!? :-(.  If we can get the AAP widely
disseminated, it can help improve that overall situation.  The
tailoring instructions can make a big difference for the average Ada
lover who sees himself in a language-decision situation.  I have a
presentation on this subject at STC'97 (Apr.30), and hope to have put
a solid initial set of instructions (& examples of applying them)
together by then.  Inputs welcome, if you've thought about this.

        -- Hal

>Hi David,
>>    Colbert 1 and 3: Dated material, but some parts are relevant
>I'm pleased by your evaluation.  I agree some parts are dated.
>>    Colbert 2: I strongly urge this package be removed.  It compares the
>>    '91 version of C++ to Ada 83.  While it's an interesting package
>>    historically, it's hardly worthwhile material for advocacy issues.
>>    Using this presentation as a case against C++ would only ensure that
>>    Ada is forever banished from that place :-)  Honestly, the effort
>>    needed to update this slide series would be better spent just creating
>>    a new set of slides.  This is NOT a slam on Ed...his slides are very
>>    good quality, and made good comparisons if the languages back then.  I
>>    just don't feel it has a place in this advocacy package.
>Thanks again for the compliment.  When I sent this paper in originally
>(about 2 years ago), I didn't think this would actually be included in
>the Advocacy package without update.  But, many people requested it,
>so I thought Rick might want to include it in the PAL.  I've been
>planing to update it.  I actually have enough material prepared in
>other presentations that I can pull together; but time has been the
>limiting factor.  (I notice that you haven't had this problem ;->).
>Take Care,