LA ACM Chapter Meetings

The meetings for FY'96 were:

September 1995

Los Angeles ACM Chapter Meeting

Conversation and Communication as a Software Development Paradigm

Christopher Hartsough, Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Wednesday, September 6, 1995 Mr. Christopher Hartsough, from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, will discuss real-world gains in software development productivity - gains that are derived from a conversation for development. This conversation involves the developer, the customer/user, and the computer. Productivity gains are from a factor of 4 to a factor of 10. (Bring your budget-pinched manager.) These gains are achieved using visual languages - languages where the programming is diagrammatic and iconic, where one draws a picture of the program (albeit in a formal syntax) and the program is done.

Mr. Hartsough has over 30 years experience in computer systems development covering a wide range of activities - from methodology to political data processing, from spacecraft engineering to payroll, from test to engineering release.

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October 1995

Joint Meeting of the Los Angeles ACM Chapter and the Technical Activity Committee on Programming Languages (TACPLAN)

Composing a Class Diagram from Patterns

Dr. Tsvi Bar-David, Abacus Programming Corp.

Thursday, October 5, 1995 The specification of an object system consists of two parts: statics and dynamics. The static description is a class diagram, which consists of the classes of the objects which compose the system and the relationships (e.g. association, aggregation, inheritance) between the classes. A pattern can be thought of as a small class diagram which solves a particular common problem. Patterns constitute a structuring concept half way in granularity between class and domain. Wouldn’t it be nice if there existed a compositional algebra of patterns which would enable us to rapidly and reliably construct the class diagram for a system or a domain from a catalogue of patterns? The benefits are obvious. Patterns can be parametrized in much the same way as classes. Here again, the benefits are large. We show a number of parametrized patterns in object notation, based upon examples in "Object Oriented Design for C++" (Bar-David) and "Design Patterns, Elements of Reusable Object-Oriented Software" (Gamma et al.).

Dr. Tsvi Bar-David has been active in object technology for almost ten years. His book, "Object Oriented Design for C++" (Prentice Hall), has been adopted as a text by a number of universities. Recent publications include a series of columns in the "Report on Object Oriented Analysis and Design" (a sister publication to JOOP) on a unified modeling notation for depicting both the static and dynamic requirements of a system on a single page. Dr. Bar-David has also published widely on topics including object oriented analysis, design, and advanced C++ features in the "Journal of Object Oriented Programming" and the "C Users' Journal". He is currently involved on the Motorola Iridium project in the areas of object oriented methodology and software architecture. He is currently developing a means of composing patterns into larger patterns and class diagrams.

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November 1995

Los Angeles ACM Chapter Meeting

GNAT, Ada95, Mixed Language Solutions, the Free Software Foundation, and the Future of Commercial Software

Dr. Robert Dewar, NYU and Ada Core Technologies

Wednesday, November 8, 1995 Ada95 has a new attitude; while Ada83 seemed to say "Other languages are junk, buzz off," Ada95 says "We can and will take advantage of whatever is available in any old language!" This presentation is about the GNU Ada Translator (GNAT), its novel implementation strategy of throwing in with the popular Gnu C/C++ rehostable compiler family and the Free Software Foundation, and the derived benefits in mixed- language interfacing and easy rehosting/retargeting. Robert will overview some of the basic and innovative GNAT technical features that focus on the open-architecture properties of the GCC (and hence GNAT). Along the way we will also learn about some important legal implications of "Free" software (public domain source code, unlimited modification rights with irrevocable public domain copyrighting) and its potential to revolutionize the future of commercial software enterprise (including the Ada tools/environment market). If "open systems" approaches are really going to dominate the future, we all need to understand how it can change the nature of our businesses. Robert notes "It was not easy to gain access to Ada83 in the early days. Now, Ada95 speaks for itself (read the favorable articles in mainstream software journals), and GNAT and this open/free approach (and the Internet) give people a chance to try it immediately."

ADDED BONUS: Assuming Bill Gates does not show up for this meeting, you will hear only Robert's half repeated from the 2- person interview done by Brazilian television on the launch of Windows'95.

Dr. Robert Dewar (NYU), co-founder of Ada Core Technologies to complete (it's finally weaned of government funding), validate (getting close) and provide commercial support for GNAT Ada95, is LA SIGAda's most popular, most frequent (7th time since 1981), and most colorful speaker over the past 14 years. A man with a diversity of interests and experiences (including former chair of the Algol Committee) and talented musician, Robert has been in the Ada community since before it was called "Ada" as a Distinguished Reviewer for both the original and revised languages, central participant in ISO standardization and language maintenance, principal co-developer of NYU's Ada/ED and GNAT, a frequent speaker and author, and SIGAda's Standards Working Group chair.

SPECIAL: The 3-disc November'95 Special Tri-Ada'95 edition of the Walnut Creek Ada CD-ROM, containing over 7 billion bytes of Ada translators (including the current version of GNAT), Ada and OO courseware, Ada 95 reference manuals, hundreds of reusable components from the Public Ada Library (PAL), a dozen other categories of information, and a browser, will be available for the promotional price of $10 at the meeting.

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December 1995

Joint Meeting of the Los Angeles ACM Chapter and the Technical Activity Committee on Artificial Intelligence (TACART)

Machine Translation in the 1990's

Prof. Kevin Knight, USC Information Sciences Institute

Wednesday, December 6, 1995Automatic translation of human languages (like Japanese and English) has long been a challenge for computer science, artificial intelligence, and linguistics. While this problem is far from solved, the last five years have seen exciting new developments, including commercial desktop systems and laboratory research aimed at breakthroughs in translation quality. This talk will describe current translation technologies and niches, including e-mail translation, information gathering, document distribution, OCR, speech, and machine-assisted translation. It will also cover recent research in statistics-based and knowledge-based translation, and will describe methodologies used to evaluate translation systems.

Kevin Knight is a Senior Research Scientist at the Information Sciences Institute of USC, and a Research Assistant Professor in USC’s Computer Science Department. His research has been mainly in the area of artificial intelligence, with an emphasis on natural language processing. He received a B.A. from Harvard University in 1986 and a Ph.D. in computer science from Carnegie Mellon University in 1992. Dr. Knight’s current focus is on large-scale machine translation. His research combines symbolic and statistical approaches to language, and covers many areas of language processing: analysis, generation, acquisition of grammars and semantic knowledge bases, and automatic pre/postediting of texts. Much of this work has been applied in a prototype translating copy machine that turns Japanese documents into English. Dr. Knight is a member of the ACM, AAAI, and the Association for Computational Linguistics.

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January 1996

Meeting of the Los Angeles ACM Chapter

"The Four Dimensions of Software Engineering"

Jim Alstad of Hughes Aircraft Company

Wednesday, January 10, 1996

Should I use waterfall development on my software engineering project, or something more modern like incremental development? What are the strong and weak points of formal methods? Just why would I want to build a prototype? Where is the payoff from using a software engineering language like Ada? Come to think of it, what is software engineering all about, anyway?

Jim Alstad will present an analytical framework for addressing all these questions, "The Four Dimensions of Software Engineering". Jim will argue that the four dimensions - Language, Orientation (purpose or implementation?), Confirmation, and Detail - characterize all technical software engineering processes, and provide a useful framework for comparing software engineering life cycles.

Jim first gave this talk at Los Angeles SIGSOFT in October 1993.

Jim Alstad is a software engineer at Hughes Aircraft Company, where he has worked since 1981. Most of his work has been developing real-time operating systems and support tools, but he also worked on the company-wide software process definition. During 1990-1, Jim represented Hughes as a Resident Affiliate at the Software Engineering Institute, where he also received a Master of Software Engineering degree from Carnegie-Mellon University.

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February 1996

Los Angeles ACM Chapter Meeting

Apple and the Future of the Power PC

Robert Seretny, Apple Computing Corporation

Wednesday, February 7, 1996

Apple Computing Corporation is an innovator and technological leader in the field of computing systems. Its implementations of the RISC Power PC chip on the Macintosh have been on the market for some time. The Macintosh operating system provides the best current example of software-hardware integration of the Power PC chip with many operations in native chip code. The Graphical User Interface of the Macintosh is the model that is used for comparison with competing software; the term "like a Macintosh" is a compliment given to those competitors who demonstrate ease of use and stability of operation. Many large companies use the Macintosh for documentation and graphics because they believe its software-hardware packages are superior for these purposes. This is the current position, but what lies ahead?

Robert Seretny is a Software Project Engineer for Apple Computing Corporation. He will discuss the future of the Power PC and how it fits into Apple's strategy over the next two to three years.

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March 1996

Joint Meeting of the Los Angeles ACM Chapter and the Los Angeles Chapters of the IEEE Computer, Reliability, Communications, Vehicular Technology, and CPMT (Components, Packaging, and Manufacturing Technology) Societies

Wireless Personal Communications

Quent Cassen, Rockwell International

Wednesday, March 6, 1996

Everywhere we look we're seeing more and more ways to communicate wirelessly. The past several years have brought tremendous growth in cellular and paging. Equipment and service provider costs have continued to drop. Almost all of us have cordless telephones at home. And now, we're beginning to hear more and more about personal communications services, or PCS. Where is this wireless technology headed and how will it benefit each of us?

This talk will provide a broad overview of wireless personal communications. It is intended for those who have an interest in personal communications but do not necessarily work in the field. Starting with an overview of cellular, the presentation will focus on PCS, a series of emerging technologies that are sure to impact our lives in the coming years. Information will be provided on the recent PCS spectrum auctions, the variety of radio technologies to be offered by PCS service providers and some of the hurdles facing PCS even before it gets off the ground.

The remainder of the talk will cover additional wireless personal communications topics that include mobile satellite services, one- and two-way paging, new home cordless phone technologies, various forms of wireless data and the wireless local loop.

Our speaker, Quent Cassen, is Manager of the Wireless Communication Division at Rockwell Semiconductor Systems in Newport Beach. He has a long-standing interest in radio communications, having received his first FCC “wireless” license some 43 years ago. His current responsibilities at Rockwell, where he has worked for 26 years, provide him an opportunity to participate in a number of industry standards bodies that focus on various aspects of wireless communications. Earlier in his career, Cassen was a silicon integrated circuit designer and manager. He holds a BE from Vanderbilt University and an MSEE from Purdue University. He is a member of Tau Beta Pi, a Senior Member of the IEEE and a former chairman of the IEEE Orange County Section.

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April 1996

Joint Meeting of the Los Angeles ACM Chapter and the Los Angeles ACM Chapter of SIGGRAPH

The Internet and Web Pages

Tuesday, April 9, 1996, 6:30 PM Social Hour, 7:30 PM Program
Moore Hall 100, UCLA

The focus will be on Internet tools and how people use them. Doug Cooper from DreamWorks will be talking about JAVA, plugins into NETSCAPE, and the new network version of NETSCAPE. This by itself would provide a great program. The program was not complete as DATA-LINK went to press. Other potential topics are VRML, 3-d chat rooms on the Internet, and virtual services.

For more details, see the SIGGRAPH newsletter, DIMENSION, which will be mailed to all LA Chapter members, or call (310) 288-1148 after April 1 for details.

The program was organized by SIGGRAPH and is being presented at their chosen location and time.

Refreshments and snacks will be provided. There is no scheduled dinner but note that campus eating facilities - there are several - are open to the public.

Fees: Members of SIGGRAPH and the LA Chapter of ACM, $1.00; nonmembers, $5.00. (Members of SIGGRAPH who have paid the increased annual fee of $25.00 will be admitted free of charge )

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May 1996

Los Angeles ACM Chapter Meeting

Quarterdeck's New Tools For Windows

Gary Saxer, Quarterdeck Office Systems

Wednesday, May 1, 1996

To get the most from your PC you need to have memory and to manage it. QEMM 8, Quarterdeck's flagship memory manager is designed to help you do just that. This has new features for all Windows 3.1, Windows 95, and DOS users and includes system memory maximization, memory multiplying and system resource management. Sometimes you have left over, obsolete software that you want to clean out of Windows. Then you can use CleanSweep95, the new uninstaller for Windows 95, Windows NT and Windows 3.1, which deletes and archives programs and files for safe clean-up of your hard drive. The utility will safely remove system files and hunt down unused files, fonts, and program files on the user's system to save megabytes of hard disk space and increase performance.

Gary Saxer will tell you about these and other Quarterdeck products in the new world of Windows 95. He is Vice President of Technical Services and is responsible for technical support, training and consulting, and worldwide telecommunications for Quarterdeck. Joining the company in 1982 as a programmer, Gary was one of the first group of Quarterdeck employees. Before joining Quarterdeck, he worked with Quarterdeck's founders at the Axxa Corporation. As one of Quarterdeck's principal spokespersons, Saxer is featured on numerous radio and television shows and has become widely known over the last ten years for his spirited presentations at industry trade shows. An expert in DOS memory management (sometimes referred to as "Mr. Memory"), he is the author of "Total Recall: The Ultimate Guide to Memory Management". Gary holds a bachelor's degree in Computer Science from California State University, Northridge.

Windows 3.1, Windows NT, and Windows 95 are copyrighted by Microsoft Corporation.

QEMM, CleanSweep, and Quarterdeck are trademarks of Quarterdeck Corporation.

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June 1996

Meeting co-sponsored by the Los Angeles ACM Chapter and the Los Angeles Chapters of the IEEE Communications Society, Vehicular Technology Society, and International Interactive Communications Society

TELECOMMUNICATIONS DEREGULATION and REFORM:

What Impact on California?

Richard Severy, MCI Telecommunications Corp., and Kitty Bernick, Pacific Telesis Group

Wednesday, June 5, 1996

This year, Congress enacted the broadest overhaul in six decades of the legal framework for the telecommunications industry. One early result is the planned merger of California's largest telephone company, Pacific Telesis, with another "Baby Bell", SBC Communications (formerly Southwestern Bell Corp.), which serves Texas and other states.

Meanwhile, our state's regulators abolished the local monopolies on phone service that had long forbidden customer choice among suppliers in this key market. But, can the incumbent telcos really be forced to allow effective competition? What new options will result for Californians seeking broadband, interactive and multimedia services?

A predictable near-term consequence of all this turmoil is lengthy new rule-making[!] and the inevitable court challenges thereto. But when the deregulatory dust finally settles, what sort of altered landscape can business, the public, and other telecom users expect?

To offer divergent and provocative answers to such questions, we'll be joined by two experts from competing segments of the telecommunications carrier industry. Richard Severy, a UC Berkeley graduate and attorney, is (since 1990) MCI's Director of Regulatory and Government Affairs for the 18-state Western Region, headquartered in San Francisco. Before joining MCI in 1983, he was in the private practice of telecom law, and with the Common Carrier Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

Kitty Bernick is Director of Federal Legislation/Telecommunications for the External Affairs Department of Pacific Bell's parent company, the Pacific Telesis Group, in San Francisco. She is a graduate of Cornell University, and holds a Master's degree in Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Before joining PacTel in 1983, Ms Bernick worked in Washington, DC as a Legislative Assistant to then-Congressman Les Aspin; Assistant Director of an American Bar Association task force on regulatory reform; Assistant Director of the White House Domestic Policy Staff under President Carter; and manager in the management consulting practice of Cooper & Lybrand. She and her family now live in Oakland.

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Last updated: August 10, 1996 (Maint. 2000 1012) [ps]