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History of Ada

Ada 83 RM
Ada 83 Rationale [@AdaIC]

Ada 9X Requirements
Ada 95 RM
Ada 95 Rationale

Early History [@AdaIC]

Ada Byron bio [@Yale]
Lady Lovelace page [@Yale]
The Real Ada [@AdaIC]

The Rogues Gallery
The Picture Gallery

A number of historical documents and notes are available:

Steelman is the famous requirements document for Ada (dated June 1978), which led to the Ada 83 Reference Manual. The previous versions of this document were named, in sequence, STRAWMAN, WOODENMAN, TINMAN, and IRONMAN.

The Ada 83 Rationale [@AdaIC] first appeared in 1978 as the Rationale for the Green programming language; it was revised in 1979 when Green was selected as Ada, and was completed in 1986. The original purpose of these documents was to explain the motivation for the language design, and to justify and defend its position against the other competitive languages and the Ironman (later Steelman, see above) requirements. Later the goal became more inspirational, to impart an appreciation of the main architectural lines of the language and its overall philosophy.

The Ada 9X Requirements, dated December 1990, is the requirements document that led ultimately to the Ada 95 Reference Manual. This requirements document is available in two compressed (.Z) electronic formats: ASCII text (69KB) and PostScript (120KB).

The rationale for the Ada 9X requirements, a large document dated May 1991, is also available in two compressed (.Z) electronic formats: ASCII text (232KB) and PostScript (352KB).

The Ada 95 Rationale describes the overall scope and objectives of Ada 95 and its main technical features. Read part 1 before you attempt to read the Ada 95 Reference Manual. Part 2 covers additional features and gives more detail of the rationale including alternatives that were considered and rejected. Part 3 describes the material in the Annexes; this includes the predefined, mandatory environment, as well as the specialized, optional annexes. Parts 2 and 3 should be read in conjunction with the Ada 95 Reference Manual. Finally, part 4 summarizes a few significant incompatibilities between Ada 83 and Ada 95, changes of the Ada 9X drafts through the review period, and a mapping between the 9X Requirements and sections of the Rationale.

How was Ada conceived? (the language, not the woman :-) Read an interesting History of the Language [@AdaIC]; it mentions many active participants in the creation and early days of Ada (published in Defense Science, March 1984 -- author not documented).

Stoneman was published to characterize the requirements for Ada Programming Support Environments (dated February 1980). Among previous versions of this document, two were named SANDMAN and PEBBLEMAN.

Who was Lady Ada Lovelace? Here is a short biography: Ada Byron, Lady Lovelace (1815-1852) [@Yale], by Dr. Betty Toole. See also a page about Lady Lovelace [@Yale].

An other informative paper is online: The Real Ada: Countess of Lovelace [@AdaIC], by Carol L. James and Duncan E. Morrill, ACM SIGSoft Software Engineering Notes 8(1), January 1983.

The Rogues Gallery is a who's who of the Ada world, with many pictures of the movers and the doers.

The Picture Gallery contains pictures with historical connections, and more...

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