IN Ada!

DATELINE: December 9, 1994

An article entitled, "Computer Development Team Does Windows" chronicles the obstacles programmers had to overcome to write Ada for Windows in November's Intercom.

The article follows five programmers from the Advanced Computer Systems Flight of the Air Combat Command Computer Systems Squadron as they embarked on the unheard of concept of developing Microsoft Windows programs in Ada. "There were no Ada tools available to do what we needed to do, so we built some of our own using existing Windows products written in C," MSgt. Dave Jaffe, NCO in charge of the team, said.

After only four months, the team successfully improved on the Sarah Message Distribution System, a DOS program they had recently developed, by writing an Ada interface from their program to Microsoft's Messaging Application Programming Interface. The lessons learned from this project benefitted the team in future efforts like the interface for functions in the Borland C Run Time Library which is not yet completed.

In addition, SrA. Jerry Wimer and A1C Ken Forman have developed Ada interfaces for Sequitor's Codebase data base engine for both FoxPro and Clipper style data bases. The Ada Windows team has since developed an automated phone directory, an electronic bulletin board and a time tracking system.

The Ada Windows team has done what many people said couldn't be done and news of their accomplishments is spreading. SrA. Curtis Worthington has documented the lessons his team learned and developed training materials. The team is eager to share the knowledge they have gained and, of course, eager to learn more. The team has begun looking at entering into the arena of developing client server applications.

Anyone with experience (or interested in getting experience) in developing Windows programs using Ada is invited to contact Capt. Randy Powell via e-mail at or call DSN 574-6655.

[Source: Strafflin, 1st Lt. Shannon. "Computer development team does Windows," Intercom. November, 1994.]