From: Simon Wright on 6 Jul 2010 15:22
Stephen Leake <stephen_leake(a)stephe-leake.org> writes:
> "Marc A. Criley" <mcNOSPAM(a)mckae.com> writes:
>> I don't think you're a very good Ada programmer or software designer.
>> A good designer needs to plan ahead, anticipate problems, be skeptical
>> of theirs and other's ideas, designs, and software. In these exchanges
>> you show little or no indication of possessing these qualities.
>> <snip really excellent post>
> You must be having a _really_ good weekend :).
This reminds me of a quote from Heston Blumenthal (British chef) in a
Sunday supplement -- he'd abandoned his "one-man crusade to save the
world from people who don't do things properly". Too big a target!
From: anon on 6 Jul 2010 15:55
In <746c$4c3253ae$433a4efa$25085(a)API-DIGITAL.COM>, "Marc A. Criley" <mcNOSPAM(a)mckae.com> writes:
>I don't think you're a very good Ada programmer or software designer.
>A good designer needs to plan ahead, anticipate problems, be skeptical
>of theirs and other's ideas, designs, and software. In these exchanges
>you show little or no indication of possessing these qualities.
>For example, in this thread you claimed that it had been reported that
>missile IFTUs (In-Flight Target Updates) had been hacked. I said:
> >>>> Cite a trustworthy source of such a "report".
>You finally responded with:
> > FOX/CBS/ABC/NBC "AP wire" -- should I go on.
>Why yes, you should. When was the supposed report supposedly broadcast?
>Is the video of the report online somewhere? What link? Is there a
>transcript of the news report, or an article writeup (most news
>organizations do have online articles about news stories of significant
>interest--of which hacking in-flight missiles would certainly qualify)?
>Now, if you thought that would be a sufficient reference, when it is
>self-evidently inadequately specified, and so vague as to support
>*nothing*, then you clearly didn't anticipate this obvious problem with
>your response, suggesting you don't do well in anticipating problems.
>And that's a real handicap when it comes to designing software.
>Or you knew this was insufficient, but hoped I wouldn't. This goes back
>to your apparent lack of problem anticipation abilities. :-)
>Or you know you can't substantiate the report, but just can't bear to
>back down in public from something you proclaimed and then fervently
>defended. It's hard, I know, I've had to do it when I've been mistaken
>on the facts about some matter.
>This then illustrates an inability to plan ahead. Immediately upon my
>questioning your claim, you should have been able to see where this
>could go (and subsequently has gone) and either made sure you had
>reputably-sourced facts in hand, or immediately backpedaled. You did
>neither, and continued to mount a wholly inadequate defense of your
>questionable claim. So not only did you apparently not realize you had
>encountered a real problem, but you were unable to foresee the potential
>consequences as it played out. Again, these are serious weaknesses when
>it comes to designing software in Ada or any other programming language.
>Let me give you an example of how to properly defend a claim--from this
>I stated that:
> >> And while violating one's clearance would subject them to
> >> potentially serious penalties, the nature of the violation would
> >> have to be quite egregious to rise to the level of Treason.
>You could have questioned me on this, that I provide some backup for it
>from a reputable source. You lacked genuine skepticism about my claim,
>and rather than demanding I back it up, you made another unsourced claim:
> > Anytime US is at war, include the ones the we are in today, the
> > charge is more likely to be Treason than any other charge.
>Refuting this claim is trivial:
>"In the history of the United States there have been fewer than 40
>federal prosecutions for treason and even fewer convictions.
>"The Cold War period saw few prosecutions for treason. On October 11,
>2006, a federal grand jury issued the first indictment for treason
>against the United States since 1952, charging Adam Yahiye Gadahn for
>videos in which he appeared as a spokesman for al-Qaeda and threatened
>attacks on American soil."
>This is a sort of back-hand support for my claim, in that violating
>one's security clearance would have to be of an extraordinarily serious
>nature to rise to the level of treason.
>It is, however, a thorough repudiation of yours, and from what's
>considered a fairly reputable source--Wikipedia. (And if you question
>that source, there are numerous links provided to the reputable sources
>for its information. See how this works?)
>There are several additional claims and statements made in the rest of
>that posting which are indicative of a lack of problem recognition,
>foresight, and skeptical abilities; and a profound ignorance of how the
>aerospace and defense industry actually functions. If you want to bring
>them up, fine, I'll address them.
>But it's just the "same old same old" when it comes to dealing with your
>postings. There's so much ignorance and ineptitude in your statements
>that anything of actual value is lost in the junk.
>Think before you post. If questioned, can you link or reference a
>*specific* supporting source? If you're making a claim, and it's
>disputed, anticipate where it might end up, and prepare for that in advance.
>Work hard. Think.
>Marc A. Criley
I believe it was also under Bush jr that a story also broke by CNN that
Bush's people were thrown for a loop. CNN know it first and that put
egg on a few faces. Bush himself comment on this one.
Also, if you want to know who said that missile were hack then you do
the research. It's been around 6 years ago, but the information should
still be found in print like the AP. Its just not that important to me.
I guess I am just too old to care anymore.
Now, I never use Wikipedia for reference, to easy for someone to modify,
Because if I check Wikipedia one day the last mod date may change by the
next day. An example. is a few days ago I said Algol was not used to as
a base for Ada, because the design team examine Algol and decided to
decline the use of Algol. My reference was a report that is on Adaic.com
the main reference for Ada. After that post the Wikipedia page on Ada was
altered to say the Algol influenced Ada only hours after I make the post.
Was it someone on this board, I am not sure but it just proves that what
on Wikipedia can not be trusted. So, to me Wikipedia is too easy to
modify for anyone to use for a true reference. And most will also tell
you believe less than 10% of what is on Wikipedia.
As for being "skeptical" I am total skeptical around here of most of this
type of posts. And I have found that after a few years here it just not
worth my time in dealing with these issue or raising my blood pressure
over it. And what I know of the aerospace and NASA would fill volumes. I
just do not give anyone the complete picture over the net, and in person
must have paperwork that way I do not give any information that could
cause harm to anyone. Because you need know who you are talking to.
Is that Skeptical enough for you! Some people are so skeptical of
everything that you can not detect their skepticism, especially on the
net. Because they choose not to fight, just accept you say something
and they move on.
As for that well-known couple that was found guilty for Treason was a
long time ago, But it kind sad and up setting that the gov't has only
found less than 40 people. I think it should be 10.000 at least. Oh well,
that our gov't for you.
But the new spys I was talking about were just captured a few weeks ago
when the Pres of Russia was in Washington. And I heard about this because
the girl a part of the spy ring or their family was making all of the news
cast as well as the net, last week. Will she have to face the charge of
Treason and then face death roll or a TV deal? But I leave that up to those
whos job it is to prosecute the spy. It important to the country but, for
most people it just a conversion thought that will fade in a few weeks,
unless she get the TV deal. I just hope the the AG does his job and is not
trying to run for president in 2012 or something.
Now, like I said. Let get back to some we all can trust. Ada!
From: anon on 6 Jul 2010 16:03
In <m2lj9owh2l.fsf(a)pushface.org>, Simon Wright <simon(a)pushface.org> writes:
>Stephen Leake <stephen_leake(a)stephe-leake.org> writes:
>> "Marc A. Criley" <mcNOSPAM(a)mckae.com> writes:
>>> I don't think you're a very good Ada programmer or software designer.
>>> A good designer needs to plan ahead, anticipate problems, be skeptical
>>> of theirs and other's ideas, designs, and software. In these exchanges
>>> you show little or no indication of possessing these qualities.
>>> <snip really excellent post>
>> You must be having a _really_ good weekend :).
>This reminds me of a quote from Heston Blumenthal (British chef) in a
>Sunday supplement -- he'd abandoned his "one-man crusade to save the
>world from people who don't do things properly". Too big a target!
Wrong Again! Just took a day off!
From: Pablo on 6 Jul 2010 17:59
On Jun 30, 2:23 am, mahdert <mahd...(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> When I first started my undergraduate studies as a computer science
> major, I was forced to use ADA in an introductory course.. Mind you I
> was already familiar with C++ at that time..but after dealing with ADA
> and compilet time errors for about a year, I decided to change my
> major to mech eng..
> Now, after many years, I started to revisit ADA and I seem to catch on
> to it.. but I feel (i know) its mostly due to my own experience and
> maturity level..
> So, I have to ask your opinion.. DO you think that the push for
> universities to use ADA is a big conspiracy among academicians to kill
> the passion of comp. sci in young students who would like to become
> software engineers???? I do not see any other reason why..
I suppose you were not introduced to Ada properly. I use Ada to
develop even math algorithms, and the high level of code control and
debugging really makes me feel very comfortable with the safety/
security that I can achieve. The issue maybe is what you expect from
the language and the level of confiability between products and
requirements. Ada I should say... makes this in such a way that if you
understand your code well, you can do this very pleasantly. I'm sure
that if you insist a bit more in studying deeper Ada and its
capabilities, you surely shall change your impression about the
At the universities... I'm pretty sure that there is no engineering
course in which Ada don't be (at least!) extremely useful, even for sw
eng students. So, if there is a conspiracy... it would be to form
better engineers (which is what market or academic world needs!).
From: Georg Bauhaus on 6 Jul 2010 18:51
On 7/6/10 9:55 PM, anon(a)att.net wrote:
> An example. is a few days ago I said Algol was not used to as
> a base for Ada, because the design team examine Algol and decided to
> decline the use of Algol. My reference was a report that is on Adaic.com
> the main reference for Ada.
Yes, the reference explicitly talks about possible bases
for the new language.
In close vicinity, there is more on how the evaluations of
the existing languages including ALGOL60 were performed against
the requirements of the new language later to become Ada.
The HOLWG statement of work for each contractor to do so
"specified that for each language requirement, the contractor was
to determine the degree of compliance of each of the candidate
languages, to comment on the feasibility of modifying the language
to bring it into compliance, and to identify features in excess of
That's three criteria for each language L against the requirements,
- L's degree of compliance with R,
- can L be changed to meet R,
- is L too much?
The outcome of evaluations of existing languages had positives
and negatives, the positives being that some languages could
be used as a base, whereas others must dismissed as a base---where
"base" is a defined term! From the same place:
"``Base'' must be distinguished from languages influencing Ada."
I read this as "base" has a very specific sense here and can
easily be confused with "influence".
The same text mentions that the influences on the new language
have been manifold and are counted as contributing to the
requirements document as well (Pascal mostly contributing syntax).
A summary of the process was published by
David Fisher, in Computer, March 1978, pp. 24-33, IEEE,
reprinted in: Wasserman, Anthony I. (1980),
He summarizes as follows <quote>:
* No language satisfied the requirements so well
that it could be adopted as a common language.
* Several of the languages were sufficiently
compatible with the technical requirements so that
they could be modified to produce an acceptable
language. All of the languages in this group are
derivatives of Algol-68, Pascal, or PL/I.
* Without exception, the evaluators found all the
interim approved languages to be inappropriate as
a basis for developing a common language.
* It was the consensus of the evaluators that it
is currently possible to produce a single language
that would meet essentially all the requirements.
Nevertheless, browsing Grau/Hill/Langmaack (1967):
"Translation of ALGOL 60", I see many things that Ada seems
to have adopted, if only because other languages and
styles of programming had been influenced by it and
have influenced Ada in turn.
For the purpose of illustration, some quotes:
"The presence of recursively defined syntactic structures
"The method of the ``Klammergebirge''" [bracket
mountains] versus the structural analogies in
Ada '83 Rationale, 2.2 or the Ada Comb (Riehle).
(Turning a pretty printed Ada text 90° counterclockwise
shows the same shape as a Klammergebirge, even when the
latter is introduced with parenthesized expressions;
I understand that GNAT has a recursive descent parser.)
So while ALGOL 60 has been dismissed as a "base" (defined term) on
which to build Ada, my understanding of all this is that there is
influence. The wikipedia article has always listed Algo68 as
influential, and compares Ada and ALGOL60, see below.
Certainly the contractors who did the evaluations
know more? Are there still documents or reviews in the
HOLWG/AJPO/... archives? I suspect there is a wealth of interesting
information in the evaluation reports, I guess it might even
supply for much of the work on new languages that seems
> After that post the Wikipedia page on Ada was
> altered to say the Algol influenced Ada only hours after I make the post.
Which wikipedia page on Ada is this? I checked both the version history
of the Ada entry in wikipedia and the Ada programming wikibook;
the versions from the last two months all compare Ada to ALGOL60
by mentioning features that ALGOL60 did *not* have; the paragraph
including "ALGOL60" shows no changes.
> Was it someone on this board, I am not sure but it just proves that what
> on Wikipedia can not be trusted.
Wikipedia is almost like FOX News, except that citizens
get a chance to say something about the news or its presentation
when something demands it... :-)