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Frequently Asked Questions

Team Ada

(Credits up front: This discussion format is somewhat inspired by, and some pieces stolen from, Christian Scarborough, who maintains the Team OS/2 FAQ)

For all intents and purposes, this message will serve as the Team Ada FAQ. If you feel a question should be added, please reply to dweller@dfw.net

Updated goodies have a * in front of them. This update is dated September 2, 1994.

[Access to the mailing-list archives added 1996-07-31. Modified mailing list instructions 1996-09-09. Updated WWW references to point to www.adahome.com 1996-10-22. --MK]

  1. What is Team Ada about?
  2. Why was Team Ada created?
  3. * What would Team Ada do?
  4. What is the DOD's or the AJPO's relationship with Team Ada?
  5. How do I join Team Ada?
  6. How do I view the Team Ada archives?
  7. Won't Team Ada compete with other Ada "promoters" like SIGAda or the ASA?
  8. What is Team Ada's relationship to ACM's SIGAda?
  9. * Where can I find material to help me as a Team Ada member?
  10. * Where can I find additional Ada info?
  11. * Who maintains this FAQ?
(*) New or modified information

What is Team Ada about?

Team Ada is a highly informal organisation dedicated to telling the world about the advantages of the Ada programming language. Faced with a large amount of ignorance and misinformation about Ada, Teamers respond by demonstrating it to others, and educating them about its strengths and weaknesses. Teamers are all volunteers with a genuine enthusiasm for Ada that translates itself into a wish to spread that enthusiasm to others.

Why was Team Ada created?

Success of a language can never depend on mandates. Successful languages have almost always grown from a grass-roots movement of some form, the most prominent example being C. Many of us know, from years of use, that Ada is a good, reliable language that has often been unfairly maligned. The goal of Team Ada is to form a loose coalition of Ada enthusuasts who wish to promote Ada at the grass-roots level. It is _very_ important to understand that it is not the purpose of the group to attack other languages. Quite the contrary, Team Ada members should maintain the sensitivity that this is a multi-lingual world, and thus should avoid situations that call for the denigration of other languages (such attacks are rarely fruitful anyway). While comparing the benefits of Ada by nature requires demonstrating the difficulty of similar solutions in other languages, it is important that Team members acknowledge and respect the multilingual diversity of the software development world. Teamers should have the attitude of, "We know you have a choice of languages, this is why we recommend Ada..."

* What would Team Ada do?

Anything that promotes Ada to other people. Examples include, but are not limited to:

Not to mention anything else that springs to mind, often on the spur of the moment. Above all, Teamers do what they do because it is FUN. (OK, that's probably stretching it a _bit_, but you're not likely to be a Teamer unless you REALLY like the language).

What is the DOD's or the AJPO's relationship with Team Ada?

Neither the DOD or the AJPO have control or authority over the activities of Team Ada. Team Ada is focused on promoting Ada to individual developers (generally) that are under no mandate to use the language.

How do I join Team Ada?

Joining Team Ada is very simple. There is no formal membership application process. All that is necessary is to do something that promotes Ada to others, no matter how large or small, and you are entitled to call yourself a Team Ada member. Once you have done this, you may wish to place the text "Team Ada" in any electronic messages you send, and you may wish to have your name placed on the register, but neither of these steps are essential to becoming a Team Ada member, just a willingness to promote Ada to others.

To send a message to everyone on the list, send it to:


and a copy of the message will be sent to everyone currently on the list.

To subscribe to the list, send mail to the address


with *no* subject. In the body of the message, type the following lines:

    subscribe team-ada  

and you will be added to the list.

For example,

    subscribe team-ada Ada Lovelace

There is no method for subscribing an account other than the one from which you send the subscription request. If you wish to do so, send mail to owner-team-ada@acm.org and the list owner will make the change.

To unsubscribe from the list, send mail to the address


with *no* subject. In the body of the message, type the following lines:

    signoff team-ada

and you will be removed from the list.

How do I view the Team Ada archives?

Messages sent to the Team Ada mailing list are archived. You can access the current Team Ada archive [@SIGAda] as a set of ASCII text files, one file per day.

Won't Team Ada compete with other Ada "promoters" like SIGAda or the ARA?

Not at all. First, Team Ada provides a way for somebody to be an "acknowledged" promoter of Ada without being a member of SIGAda. It should be apparent that one does not have to be a SIGAda member to be a Teamer (and vice versa :-). Second, Team Ada members should be working hand in hand with the ARA and SIGAda to promote Ada. If the concept takes off, many enterprising vendors will realize this as a mechanism to increase their market share (more developers using Ada privately will be interested in using Ada at work). Third, Team Ada members have a greater chance of reaching smaller educational institutions, like community colleges and high schools, where vendors typically can't find the manpower to reach.

What is Team Ada's relationship to ACM's SIGAda?

SIGAda endorses Team Ada as a viable concept to promoting the usage of Ada. There is no monetary support provided to Team Ada, since Team Ada is, and always will be, an un-organized organization :-), but SIGAda maintains the Team Ada mailing list (see "How do I join Team Ada" above).

* Where can I find material to help me as a Team Ada member?

A special "Team Ada" directory has been set up in the Public Ada Library (PAL) at wuarchive.wustl.edu (languages/ada/team_ada).

This FAQ can also be found (in HTML format) on the Ada Home server, which is at http://www.adahome.com/ , and (in ASCII) in the team_ada/faq directory in the PAL.

The June 94 edition of the Walnut Creek Ada CDROM includes the team_ada directory in the PAL and the Team Ada FAQ as of June 8, 94.

* Where can I find additional Ada info?

The GNU Ada compiler (GNAT) can be found at cs.nyu.edu, under /pub/gnat. It is a robust compiler, avialable on a variety of platforms and OSs, including OS/2, MS-DOS, Solaris, Linux, SunOS, and many others.

Free Ada goodies, including "help" materials from "Team Ada" (see below) are available from wuarchive.wustl.edu, under /languages/ada. You can also find this same material at any other wuarchive mirror site, including ftp.cdrom.com.

If you have a CD-ROM, you might want to consider ordering the Walnut Creek Ada CDROM, which contains a mirror of the Public Ada Library. For more information, call 1-510-674-0783 or e-mail to info@cdrom.com.

You also might want to poke around the userdocs/alt_srcs directory in the PAL. The alt_srcs directory contains pointers to CDROMs, other online services, companies and their products, etc.

The Ada 95 Reference Manual, the Ada 95 Rationale, and several other interesting Ada-related documents can be found at www.adahome.com.

If you're running Mosaic, Cello, or any other WWW browser, you might want to poke on over to http://www.adahome.com/ . There, you'll find a wonderful assortment of goodies, mostly courtesy of Magnus Kempe (those Swiss never fail to impress me! :-) [I'm not Swiss --MK], including a hypertext version of the Ada Reference Manual. If you have WWW, you have no excuse for not exploring this electronic playground!

Finally, if all else fails, post a request on comp.lang.ada, there's hundreds of friendly, helpful people there. If you can't post to Usenet News, drop a note to dweller@dfw.net, and he'll try to handle it for you.

* Who maintains this FAQ?

David Weller is the "official" maintainer of this FAQ. He can be reached at dweller@dfw.net or you can leave a message for him at 1-713-334-5498.
Dave Weller, dweller@dfw.net
Member: Team Ada, Team OS/2

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