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Author Ward, Jean Renard
Source ACM Digital Library
Content type Text
Publisher Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)
File Format PDF
Language English
Subject Domain (in DDC) Computer science, information & general works ♦ Data processing & computer science
Abstract Many of the back issues of SEN contain articles about software development environments and software tools. UNIX has historically been cited as an example of a good software development environment. For many developers still struggling with the offspring of MS-DOS, RSX-11M, OS-370 and the like, UNIX still represents a dreamed-of state-of-the-art. Many of the more enhanced environments actually sit on top of UNIX or a UNIX-like system, especially for graphics-based environments like those offered by Sun Microsystems, Apollo, and Masscomp.Pencept's business is real-time character recognition for hand-"scribbled" text. Our products run in a completely non-UNIX environment, but all of our development is done on UNIX. This presented a unique opportunity to find out how good "standard" UNIX is for developing non-UNIX products.Based on our experience, we have come to the conclusion that UNIX is a good software development environment for the kinds of applications that are traditionally run on UNIX, if UNIX is the target environment. UNIX (and most of its derivatives) do NOT address many of the more general needs of non-UNIX software engineering projects.UNIX is a powerful system, partly because it comes with a large assortment of software development tools. Some of the deficiencies and problems we had to resolve were:+ Certain UNIX and vendor software had to be modified, because it did not have all the functions we absolutely needed.+ Several UNIX utilities did poorly for this big a project.+ Some UNIX features were poorly designed for non-UNIX development.+ Some tools for our particular project are not part of UNIX.Our particular vendor is Masscomp, which competes in the high-performance graphics workstation market with companies such as Apollo, Sun Microsystems, and Digital Equipment Corporation. We believe that our experience is generally applicable to UNIX systems, regardless of vendor, and across a variety of UNIX versions (System III, System V, Berkeley 4.2, etc.)
Description Affiliation: Pencept, Inc., Waltham, MA (Ward, Jean Renard)
Age Range 18 to 22 years ♦ above 22 year
Educational Use Research
Education Level UG and PG
Learning Resource Type Article
Publisher Date 1979-04-01
Publisher Place New York
Journal ACM SIGSOFT Software Engineering Notes (SOEN)
Volume Number 10
Issue Number 3
Page Count 14
Starting Page 95
Ending Page 108

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Source: ACM Digital Library