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"Brian Nettleton @pulsar" <[log in to unmask]>
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Brian Nettleton @pulsar
Tue, 5 Nov 1996 09:52:02 -0800
text/plain (34 lines)
> >However I also realize that implementation language
> >choice really has only a moderate impact on the "bottom line"
>   Besides any direct impact, there is the indicator effect.
> 200 years ago knowing Latin was a job qualification - not
> because business was conducted in Latin, but because it was an
> indicator of a certain level of education.  Knowledge of Ada is
> (should be?) suggestive of a higher software engineering
> sophistication than, say, knowledge of Basic or C.
Yes.  This is really my point though.  Decisions such as what
level of education developers have are often more important that
what language they program in.  So requiring that the development
process be of a high quality is probably more important than
specifying that the Ada language be used.  Please don't interpret
this wrong though.  I do think that Ada is one of the BEST languages
to use with a high quality development process.  It's just that I
don't think Ada will save you if you make other decisions poorly.

The big problems we have is that high quality development processes
are just beginning to be understood.  As the NRC report points out
sometimes it's inappropriate to develop custom software for certain
applications.  It really says to me that policy should not dictate
that custom software be developed for all applications.  This said
then an Ada mandate no longer makes sense.

Unfortunately some folks will read the report an say that Ada is
inappropriate for development of financial or logistical applications.
I believe this is not the intent of the report and these people
have incorrectly interpreted the recommendations.  If this is indeed
the case then I think the report has done a disservice.

-Brian Nettleton
Thomson Software Products