Beginning of End of Ada Mandate 
Author Message
 Beginning of End of Ada Mandate

    A recent news article in Government Computer News seems a good basis for
my 1993 News Year Prediction:  that some time in the next two years, '93/94,
the Ada Mandate will be retracted/recalled/eradicated.

(Keep in mind, to avert some of the flames, that none of my arguments or
general interests, implictly or explicitly, are based on the technical merits
of the grammar and syntax of the Ada language.  Give me a really good Turbo
Ada, and I'd probably use nothing else on my PCs.)

                CONTINUAL PENTAGON DISSENSION/DISINTEREST IN ADA

    Paul Strassman, as I have pointed out before, does not regard Ada highly.
And when the DoD computing czar, currently sweeping every DoD computer under
his belt (and getting away with it over service turf walls), does not highly
regard Ada, you can start kissing the Mandate goodby. Never have spoken to him
personally, so my belief in this statement is mostly based on the fact that he
publicly never mentions in the context of defense computing.  Case in point:
The November 30, 1992, issue of InformationWeek (widely read in the corporate
IS world) has a two page article on the Pentagon's and Strassman's CIM effort
and DMRD 918.  In the article, he is amply quoted about the incredible size
and complexity and cost about these efforts.  A perfect opportunity, as has
been the case in many other articles in the corporate computing press that I
have read in the past few years, there is absolutely NO mention of Ada.  All
he has to do is say something simple like "Yea, the reorganization effort is
complex, but one strong foundation is our language standardization with Ada".
He has never said, or insisted (the press will print anything from officials),
anything about Ada in these perfect opportunities to help push Ada outside
of the defense world.

To support my contention on Strassman's position, here is the news item from
Government Computer News 1/4/93, page 44:
    The Defense Department plans to reuse code written in languages other than
Ada, a key Defense Information Systems Agency executive told a vendor audience
this month. Denis Brown, director of DISA's Center for Information Management,
said Ada is the foundation of the department's reuse program.  But it is "not
the only language which is currently in our software reuse repository", he
said at a breakfast this month sponsored by market researchers Input Inc. in
Vienna, VA. That statement suggested to some in the audience that DOD's
commitment to Ada is wavering in the rush to cut information systems costs
and standardize on a Cobol system, the newly rechristened Defense Business
Management System, rather than the STANFINS Redesign, the Army's nearly
completed financial system that is written in Ada.
Paul Strassman, director of Defense Information and Corporate Information
Management czar, "is a very pragmatic ideologue", Brown responded. He said the
system DFAS selected incorporated fourth-generation and fifth-generation
software technology, and that was the important thing".  STRASSMAN "DIDN'T
HAVE A LOT OF PROBLEM WITH" THE CHOICE OF A SYSTEM   NOT  WRITTEN IN ADA,
BROWN ADDED, " .... HE LOVES TO SURPRISE PEOPLE".

Kiss of death for the Ada mandate.

==============================================================================

Thus my prediction of its demise within two years. (Long enough for the DoD
to fund a study arguing the Mandate's demise, to save face. Hey, I'll write
it, and even be nice).

Gregory Aharonian
Source Translation & Optimization
Happy New Year!!!!
--
**************************************************************************
Greg Aharonian
Source Translation & Optimiztion
P.O. Box 404, Belmont, MA 02178



Sun, 25 Jun 1995 10:26:37 GMT  
 Beginning of End of Ada Mandate

Quote:

>    Paul Strassman, as I have pointed out before, does not regard Ada highly.
>And when the DoD computing czar, currently sweeping every DoD computer under
>his belt (and getting away with it over service turf walls), does not highly
>regard Ada, you can start kissing the Mandate goodby. Never have spoken to him
>personally, so my belief in this statement is mostly based on the fact that he
>publicly never mentions in the context of defense computing.

I have spoken to Mr Strassman personally, and can confirm that he does
have a high regard for Ada.  Of course, being a good professional with
an interest in getting the job done, he regards it as a tool, not a
religion, and so doesn't feel the need to wave it in the air like the
head of John the Baptist at every conceivable opportunity.

Have you ever considered writing for the Weekly World News, Mr Aharonian?



Sun, 25 Jun 1995 15:50:46 GMT  
 
 [ 2 post ] 

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