Ada Used to Automate Swiss Banking System

Form U126-O394 BANKING.TXT

Ada Information Clearinghouse, 1-800-AdaIC-11 (232-4211), 703/685-1477

KUKOBEZA: Ada Used to Automate Swiss Banking System

by Alan Paterson, Paranor AG


The Swiss post/telegraph/telephone company includes a department that runs a financial payments system. Customers hold interest-bearing accounts, and transactions on these accounts are made in a similar fashion to 'normal' banks. In practice, these accounts form the major means of non-cash payments (also to and from banking accounts) in Switzerland.


The project is being realized in two phases. First all customer information is collected in a central database. This information comprises:

This system is therefore the central store of knowledge of all customers using the financial services of the PTT. A few figures:

This system has been realized and Version 2 is now in operation. As this article is being written, approximately 1/2 of the data records have been brought on-line and more are coming every weekend. Work is proceeding on Versions 3 and 4 (added functionality).

A few technical details.

Why Ada

Ada has been in use in Paranor since 1985 and there has never been a suggestion that we use anything else. All active programmers are agreed that a switch to another language would mean a marked reduction in programming comfort and ultimately an inferior product. Ada was automatically used in this project. The principal features of Ada which make it superior include:

On Ada9X

Since Paranor produces one-off projects and rarely products, the object-oriented complaint that Ada has only primitive means of inheritance is not a major issue. It is, however, to be expected that the Ada9X features will allow even more elegant programs to be produced.

Phase 2: The actual financial transactions and the accounts. This part is still in the design phase and is planned to be completed by Jan. 1995 and operational in Jan 1996. Much can still be said of this phase (e.g., 2,000,000 financial transactions per day) and this will be done in a following article.

(*) KUKOBEZA is a German acronym for something like - Customers, accounts, payment-slips and payments.


Produced in cooperation with Ada Information Clearinghouse, Ada Software Alliance, and ACM SIGAda. Hard copy available from the Ada Information Clearinghouse, at the address below.


The views, opinions, and findings contained in this report are those of the author(s) and should not be construed as an official Agency position, policy, or decision, unless so designated by other official documentation.

Ada Information Clearinghouse (AdaIC)
P.O. Box 46593
Washington, DC  20050-6593
1-800-AdaIC-11 (232-4211), 703/685-1477, FAX 703/685-7019; CompuServe 70312,3303

The AdaIC is sponsored by the Ada Joint Program Office and operated by IIT Research Institute.