2.0    Planning the Transition to Ada 95

Managing the challenges and multiple dimensions of the transition framework presented in Section 1 can best be accomplished by implementing a series of activities that focus and direct the transition to Ada 95. The Ada 95 Transition Planning Guide offers PEOs and PMs recommendations to establish the groundwork necessary to effectively execute the transition. This section discusses the transition planning process around which the remainder of this document is centered and discusses the relationship between the process and the transition planning template found in Appendix A.

2.1    The Ada 95 Transition Planning Process

The Ada 95 Transition Planning Guide presents a focused process, illustrated in Figure 2-1, for developing the initial plans necessary to guide a program on the path to Ada 95. This process steps the PEO/PM through the major planning elements involved in transitioning to Ada 95.

Figure 2-1. The Ada 95 Transition Planning Process

The first step in planning the transition to Ada 95 is establishing the goals of the transition and assessing the current state of the program's infrastructure in relation to those goals. In addition to the normal concerns of project breadth and depth, one of the concerns of PEOs/PMs must be the the features and functions of Ada 95 that are incorporated in the compilers and tools developed by the Ada 95 vendors.

Ada 95 vendors may only support selected annexes of the language, so identifying the features of the language that are most important to the project is critical in identifying the appropriate compiler and toolset for the job. Except in the case of transitions from Ada 83, training may be required to educate project personnel on the specifics involved in making the transition to Ada 95. Training requirements vary depending on the background of the personnel conducting the transition and range from no training at all to a comprehensive curriculum. It may also be necessary to supplement the transition project staff with Ada 95 experts to assist in making the transition smooth.

Once the direction of the transition has been established and a program assessment has been conducted, the PEO/PM identifies the activities that most appropriately move their systems to Ada 95. For example, for programs already using Ada 83, this may involve recompiling the current code with an Ada 95 compiler to identify any upward incompatibilities and then developing a plan to resolve them. For non-Ada shops, the use of pilot projects or prototypes may be necessary to develop experience in the new language. Whatever course of action is taken, it should minimize the risks that could result in cost overruns and schedule delays.

For every transition strategy, there are associated risks that the PEO/PM has to manage and control. The last step in the process depicted in Figure 2-1 addresses the actions necessary to manage these transition risks. Planning consideration must be given to the development of processes that identify, monitor, and control risks that can jeopardize the success of the transition effort.

The Ada 95 Transition Planning Process provides PEOs/PMs with a high level perspective of the types of Ada 95 activities that will be required to effectively and smoothly migrate to the newest version of the language. It establishes the foundation upon which a transition management plan specific to their needs can be created and serves as the basis for the guidance provided in the following sections.

2.2    The Ada 95 Transition Plan Template

Appendix A of this planning guide presents a transition planning template that can be tailored to the unique needs of each project embarking on the transition to Ada 95. The template serves as a worksheet that PEOs/PMs can complete as they review the guidance contained in this document. The completed template can then be used to create detailed transition plans that will direct a program's migration to Ada 95. Sections 3, 4, and 5 present guidance and recommendations that the PEO/PM can use to complete related portions of the template. Table 2-1 provides a matrix which maps the document sections to the corresponding planning template sections, to guide the reader in completing the template.

As PEOs/PMs develop their project specific plans, they may find that sections of the template do not apply to their unique set of circumstances. In such cases, it is appropriate to disregard those portions of the template. Likewise, a PEO/PM may supplement the template with activities that are not covered in this guide. The template is not intended to be a comprehensive set of required activities, but rather a list of recommended activities that can be modified to best satisfy the particular needs of any program embarking upon the transition effort.


Table 2-1. Mapping the Guide to the Template

Next Section - 3.0 Assessing the Ada 95 Transition Needs

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