close this bookVolume 2: No. 44
View the documentNews -- research politics
View the documentNews -- computer industry
View the documentResources -- information services
View the documentNews -- job opportunities
View the documentNews -- book and journal calls
View the documentNews -- fuzzy technology
View the documentDiscussion -- programming languages

The NSB Commission on the Future of NSF has received as much as 225 letters per day, most supporting the status quo or increased funding for small science, education, and facilities programs. Director Walter Massey has said "I may be wrong" and "Much more has been read into the establishment of the Commission than was intended." He says this is a first step in a lengthy review process, and that basic university-based research will not be slighted. The commission is continuing to accept comments, but will have difficulty digesting them by the report deadline. One question is whether the average grant of $60K/year is large enough to be meaningful. [Richard M. Jones (fyi@aip.org), Am. Inst. of Physics, FYI #139. sci.research, 10/21.] Congress, of course, is likely to ignore any report that seems self-serving for NSF's academic constituencies.

Robert A. Eisenstein told the NSF Advisory Committee for Physics that Congress must be convinced NSF is helping to solve national problems (but not responsible for solving them entirely). Walter Massey said that NSF is being reviewed because of its importance and potential, not because of any negative perception. "Nothing is being rushed," the agency will not fund industrial research, and Massey intends "to do no harm." Low award rates are a problem, and Massey hopes that NSF's budget can be doubled or tripled. Proposal processing is also a problem, and the physics division may try panel reviews. [Ibid, FYI #140. sci.research, 10/21.] Massey has said that NSF should be allowed to decide how best to spend its budget. Congress would find that surprising.

Gary Clyde Hufbauer, a former Treasury Department tax expert, estimates that tax reform could increase U.S. R&D by $2B and high-tech output by $34B. Our complex system hurts U.S. industry and pushes production and R&D overseas. Hufbauer wants to stop foreign tax credits, taxing of foreign income, and allocation of U.S. R&D overhead to foreign operations. We should boost export tax incentives, make the R&D credit permanent, exclude capital gains tax for shares held five years, and subject royalties earned abroad to U.S. taxation only. [J. of Commerce, 10/13. KRBN, agentsee.]

Banner Blue Software Inc. (Fremont, CA) has released a free PC spreadsheet program called "Uncle Sam's Budget Balancer." It's loaded with Federal budget data and options for tax cuts and increases. A running tally shows how the deficit changes over the next five years. Download sam.zip from CompuServe's ISSUES or VOTEFORUM or through Filesearch on America Online. Banner Blue will send you a copy for $10; (510) 794-6850. [Mike Langberg, SJM, 10/23.]

Prodigy has been running an electronic town meeting with access to Bill Clinton and George Bush. The candidates were asked more than 150K questions, of which Clinton answered 50 and Bush answered 25. Neither has promised to stay online after the election. [Time, 10/12.]

(Perot had dropped out at that time. A Rich Tennant cartoon calls Ross Perot the "terminate and stay resident" candidate. [CW, 10/12.])

Papers by Clinton and Bush have been indexed and made available on sunsite.unc.edu via the Wide-Area Information Server (WAIS) protocol. (You can get a Mac, DOS, Windows, VMS, Unix, or X-windows WAIS client by FTP from sunsite.unc.edu or think.com, or try out a simple client by telnetting to bbs.oit.unc.edu and its 300 databases.) [Paul Jones (pjones@mento.oit.unc.edu), PACS-L, 9/2.]

Daniel Goldin reorganized NASA with half an hour's internal notice, just weeks before the election. He may be making his mark before Clinton takes over. Lennard Fisk's Office of Space Science and Applications (OSSA) has split into Mission to Planet Earth under Shelby Tilford (acting) and an Office of Planetary Science and Astrophysics (also known as Mission from Planet Earth) under Wesley Huntress (acting). The Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology has split into the Office of Aeronautics and the Office of Advanced Concepts and Technology. Other changes are planned. [Audrey T. Leath (fyi@aip.org), Am. Inst. of Physics, FYI #141. sci.research, 10/21.]

The U.S. has 61M computers in use. Europe has 32M; Japan, 10M; the UK, 7M; Germany, 7M; France, 5M; Canada, 4M; Italy, 3M; Australia, 2M; and The Netherlands, 1M. [The Computer Industry Almanac. CW, 10/12.]

Intel will call its new "586" chip the Pentium. (Courts had ruled that AMD could use Intel's numeric designations.) Intel says it rejected Cinco de Micro, IAMFASTEST, and 586-NOT. [WSJ, 10/20. Tim Finin.]

Rel-East is an East/West high-tech newsletter from Esther Dyson in New York. She covers things like Sun's support of the Moscow SPARC center under Boris Babaian (at the Russian Academy of Science's Institute of Precise Mechanics and Computer Equipment). Sun is gaining both improved parallel compiler technology and Russian business markets for workstations. [Maryfran Johnson, CW, 9/7.]

Thinking Machines Corp. is marketing its $750K CM-5 Scale 3 machine for commercial online transaction processing. The U.S. Census bureau, for instance, is using a CM-5 to convert linguistic profession descriptions to code numbers. In past practice, "the machine that creates the [database] is not powerful enough to understand the data." [CW, 10/92. Tim Finin.] Databases + more-powerful computers = AI jobs. (Circulate proposals or explore consulting opportunities instead of waiting for job ads. Ask TMC for leads to their customers.)

Inference Corp. products were used in more than one fourth of the applications at the Innovative Applications show. Inference Corp. also dominated last year's show. Attendance at IAAI/AAAI '92 was projected at 4,000, a slight increase from last year. [David Blanchard, ISR. MIN, 7/92.]

Intellicorp CEO Katharine Branscomb is leaving to become VP of business development at Lotus Development Corp. (Cambridge, MA). Kenneth H. Haas, CFO, will replace her as president of Intellicorp Inc. (Mountain View). [SJM, 10/20.]

Apple VP of Information Systems and Technology (and former CFO) Deborah A. Coleman is following Del Yocam to Tektronix, where she will help reorganize operations. Her financial and manufacturing expertise are top-notch, but it's said that she pushes so hard that she had to take two sabbaticals after burnout from 100-hour weeks. [Rory J. O'Connor, SJM, 10/23.]

Robert J. Ford has been named VP of Engineering at Objectivity Inc. (Menlo Park). At Boole & Babbage, he was head of engineering, systems development, and advanced technology. [SJM, 10/22.] (High-level movements may indicate openings at either company.)

I previously reported that Los Alamos National Laboratory is offering its hardware, tools, and expertise in a Computational Test Bed for Industry. The contacts are Bruce Wienke, (505) 667-1358, and Jim Danneskiold, (505) 667-7000. [CACM, 10/92.]

UWashington's Human Interface Technology Laboratory has signed up 19 companies in a Virtual Worlds Consortium to develop business applications of virtual reality. [BW, 10/5.]

Prolog vendors have formed a group to support applications development, standardize ISO Prolog, and sponsor a conference. Founders include BIM, Cosytec, Delphia, Interface Computer, Integral Solutions, Logic Programming Associates, Prolog Development Center, Prologia, Quintus, and Siemens Nixdorf. [IEEE Expert, 10/92.]

David K. Kahaner (kahaner@cs.titech.ac.jp) of ONR-Asia, with Thomas Weigert (weigert@etl.go.jp), has reported on the 9/92 Pacific Rim AI conference in Seoul. Korean AI research has improved in the last two years. (Korean companies have scaled back planned physical expansions due to the global slowdown, but have continued R&D investments unabated.) The Korean Advanced Institute for Science and Technology (KAIST) and its Center for Artificial Intelligence Research (CAIR) have several projects in machine translation, including one with NEC. Conference papers from Korea and Japan favored input handling and pattern recognition, while China and SE Asia favored knowledge processing via neural networks and expert systems. The U.S. and Canada dominated knowledge representation and languages. Many of the Asian neural-network papers described applications and test results with little analysis or theory; C.S. Leung's "bidirectional learning" (Chinese U. of Hong Kong) was an exception. Neural subsystems were used effectively in case retrieval for CBR (J.H. Lim, joohwee@iss.nus.sg) and analysis of noisy, distorted signals (Soon-Ju Kang, KAIST). Fuzzy logic papers from Japan, Singapore, and Korea were of high quality, although growth of interest in fuzzy logic has slowed. Japan also has a small genetic-algorithms community. Hitoshi Iba (iba@etl.go.jp) of ETL presented very promising work in using GA to evolve improved crossover operators and structured spaces. [Rick Schlichting (rick@cs.arizona.edu), comp.research.japan, 10/21.]

In a tutorial, Se June Hong of IBM predicted little profit in semiconductors in the next decade, but that the software business will grow 30%-40% per year. [Ibid.]

CERFnet has announced a network information services list, nis@cerf.net. Several dozen network monitors will forward announcements of new Internet services. The sign-up procedure is nonstandard: send a "subscribe nis" message to listserv@cerf.net. [Susan Calcari (calcaris@cerf.net), NEW-LIST, 10/25. Ray Allis (ray@espresso.boeing.com).]

Supernet International has become HPCwire, a free online service for the high-performance computing community. Services include forums, daily news, feature articles, newsletters, product announcements, a buyer's guide, bidirectional job bank, research register, calendar of events, information files, and a library service. All information is archived. Telnet to hpcwire.ans.net (147.225.1.51) with login "hpcwire" (or use rlogin hpcwire.ans.net -l hpcwire). By modem, call (408) 428-2565 with N-8-1 and VT100 emulation. The service is run by Tabor Griffin Communications (San Diego), (619) 625-0070; Thomas B. Tabor, president. Sponsors include ANS, Alliant, Avalon, DEC, Fujitsu, Genias, IBM, iOmega, IMSL, Intel, nCUBE, MasPar, Maximum Strategy, MMB, ParaSoft, The Portland Group, Scientific Computing Associates, The Smaby Group, and Storage Technology Corp. [Mathew Burns (admin @hpcwire.ans.net), 10/12. Steve Goldstein.] (Gee, no government grant!)

The San Jose Mercury News will launch an electronic news service next year, in partnership with America Online Inc. Printed news items might carry access codes for expanded electronic articles. AOL has 182K subscribers; SJM has 268K (333K on Sundays). [SJM, 10/13. agentsee.]

A consortium called First Cities could bring multimedia services to 10K U.S. homes by 1995, using existing phone wiring, cable, or new fiber-optic lines. The consortium includes Apple, Tandem, U.S. West, BellCore, Bieber Taki Associates (a venture- capital firm), Corning, Eastman Kodak, Kaleida Labs, North American Philips, Southwestern Bell, and Sutter Bay Associates. [WSJ, 10/7. Tim Finin.] MCC is the consortium leader. GTE and several cable companies are working on similar ventures. Many of the First Cities partners also have projects competing for the same research funds. [SJM, 10/7.]

FirstSearch Catalog from the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC; Dublin, OH) provides keyword access via modem to lists of books, magazines, newspapers, maps, audiovisual materials, etc., in more than 15,000 libraries in 46 countries. That's WorldCat, just one of 25 databases. OCLC also provides interlibrary loan service throughout the world. (800) 848-5878 or (614) 761-5054. [NewsWire, 10/6. agentsee.]

Another catalog system with 7.5M records is WLN, now available free over the Internet. Just telnet to wln.com (192.156.252.2) for a simplified interface called WLN Easy Access. Dial-up access is also available. Records come from the Library of Congress, GPO, NLM, National Library of Canada, and WLN member libraries (with over 16 million holdings). IAC's magazine, business, and academic journal indexes are also free on WLN through 10/31; together they cover almost 5,000 publications. Contact info@wln.com or Rush Brandis (brandis@rs6a.wln.com) at (800) DIALWLN, (206) 923-4000. [IRLIST, 10/20.]

The Information Age: information is wealth even when it isn't multimedia or sexy. A single database, properly exploited, may support more people than a hundred databases "made available." Consider FedNet from Business Information Network Inc. (Ft. Washington, MD), a new source of information on 70,000 U.S. residential and commercial properties in foreclosure. FedNet also features information files, a forum, and a calendar of auctions and special sales events. (800) 366-9246. [Business Wire, 10/7. agentsee.]

Prodigy will soon offer email connectivity to the internet, as well as its own Fax and surface-mail delivery options -- but no FTP or telnet. Members will pay to send and also to receive internet mail, with price based on message length. Prodigy hopes that its simple mail interface will encourage families to communicate over the internet with their college students and soldiers. [James Galambos. Ross Alan Stapleton (stapleton@misvax.mis.arizona.edu), com-priv, 10/19.]

PowerVision is a new service in San Diego offering online shopping, games, public forums for chatting, electronic mail, and airline reservations. Unique services include personal ads, digitized photos of customers, and listings of homes for sale. Unlike Prodigy and CompuServe, PowerVision will be sold by "sales associates" in a multilevel marketing (MLM) plan. (Think Amway. Associates can make more money by recruiting new associates than by selling services.) Fees are high at $79 to start, $18.95/month, and $.09/minute after two hours. Analysts are skeptical, but president Jeff Cohen believes that word of mouth is the best promotion. [Michelle Vranizan, The Orange County Register, 10/11. KRBN, agentsee.]

Sierra On-Line Inc. (Oakhurst, CA) is officially opening its games-only PC communication service. $12.95/month buys 30 hours of play with other users; three "theme parks" are another $4 each. (The "home" or welcome screen is a picture of Sierra's "ImagiNation.") "If it doesn't work, it's probably because it's a product ahead of its time." Ybarra Productions Inc. (Redwood City) gets a royalty if you join an expedition into its Shadow of Yservius adventure game. (800) 743-7721. [Mike Langberg, SJM, 10/19.] Other game developers are needed.

UNancy (France) will have 9/93 tenure-track openings in CS, including multimedia databases, AI, KBS, SE, CV, automated deduction, scheduling, man-machine dialogues, and software engineering. You must first be registered on a national "Qualification" list. Apply to Marion Crehange (marion.crehange @loria.fr), +33 83 91 21 57, by 10/30. [m.j.o, 10/21.]

Monowave Corp. needs an engineer or scientist to organize a speech database and develop speech recognition and synthesis capabilities in C and microcode. $2,700-$5K. Steven Reisler, 1818 Westlake Ave. N, #330, Seattle, WA 98109. [I.Y.L. Tsiang (et@monowave.com), m.j.o, 10/20.]

UGeneva's AI and Vision Group needs a French-speaking BS/MS research assistant to integrate C++/Lisp vision modules. Queries to Thierry Pun (pun@cui.unige.ch). [m.j.o, 10/21.]

The National Center for Supercomputing Applications (UIllinois at Urbana-Champaign) needs a PhD or MS computational chemist. Full-time (12-month) academic professional position. Search #3532, (217) 244-4117. [Becky Lonberger (rebeccal.ncsa@uiuc.edu), m.j.o, 10/21.]

NCSA also needs a BS visiting research programmer for CM-5 studies of gravitational relativity. Also involves training others. Search #3533. Apply by 10/30. [Ibid.]

The Naval Postgraduate School is seeking a CS department chair and tenure-track faculty in computer graphics and computer security. Man-Tak Shing (mantak@taurus.cs.nps.navy.mil), (408) 646-2634. [sci.research.careers, 10/23.]

Stanford KSL needs an AI/SE-trained PhD RA for Lisp development of an advanced software design environment. Needs expertise in EBL, planning, KR, and knowledge acquisitions. $56,160. G. Smith, CS, 701 Welch Road, Bldg. C, Palo Alto, CA 94304. [Computer, 10/92.]

Simon Fraser University needs someone experienced in constraint logic programming to fill its NSERC Industrial Chair in Applied AI: KBS. 5-year appointment with 5-year extensions. A chair in expert systems is also open. Apply by 12/1 to Arthur Liestman, (604) 291-3045 Fax. [Computer, 10/92.]

Hiroshima City University is opening with departments of CS, CE, Intelligent Systems, and Information Machines and Interfaces. Four-year professors are needed in AI, KE, DB, NLP, robotics and other areas. Apply by 12/31 to Michio Ishihara, +81 82-244-5480 Fax, or to tohma@cs.titech.ac.jp. [Computer, 10/92.]

(It's getting hard to find a CS faculty ad that doesn't mention AI. Active job seekers should monitor CACM and IEEE Computer.)

A Chicago company needs a PhD statistician for financial applications. Tom Gugger, Eagle Group, (419) 882-8006. [jurban@uoft02.utoledo.edu, m.j.o, 10/23.]

A Wisconsin company needs an experienced BS Unix/OOP/CASE software engineer for embedded real-time fuzzy-logic or neural- network pattern recognition and data analysis. $40K-$55K. Roger Kornfein (kornfein@qiclab.scn.rain.com), E.D.P. Consultants, (503) 654-9600. [m.j.o, 10/23.]

ORINCON Corp. needs an engineering office head in Rome, NY, for Air Force SBIR RTD&E and marketing in signal processing, neural networks, AI, information processing, and/or image processing. Ten years experience; PhD preferred. ORINCON Corp., 9363 Towne Centre Drive, San Diego, CA 92121. [Patrick K. Simpson (xm8@sdcc12.ucsd.edu), m.j.o, 12/22.]

Sterling Software needs a U.S. MS/PhD project leader in advanced text processing on workstations. Sterling Software, KSC Operations, Attn: Mr. Allen Lazzara, Beeches Technical Campus, Rt. 26N, Rome, NY 13440 [David James Gray (djgray@rodan.acs.syr.edu), m.j.o, 10/21.]

UMaryland's Communications and Signal Processing Lab needs a BS research engineer to develop software for real-time signal processing using DSP chips. $40K+. [Fabrice de Comarmond (fabrice@eng.umd.edu), m.j.o, 10/23.]

Xerox Imaging Systems (Peabody, MA) needs an experienced BS member of technical staff in Unix/C/assembly image processing and pattern recognition for document decomposition and recognition. Luc Vincent (lucv@xis.xerox.com), (508) 977-2438 Fax. [m.j.o, 10/24.]

SRI International needs several U.S. BS+ Unix/C software engineers to work on custom distributed database systems and WAN graphic monitoring systems. Ray Trent (rat@erg.sri.com). [m.j.o, 10/23.]

Stanford's CS Robotics Lab has an RA position in motion planning for radiosurgical brain surgery. Jean-Claude Latombe (latombe@cs.stanford.edu). [Paul Hemler (hemler@cs.stanford.edu), su.jobs, 10/23.]

The Salt Lake City Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center (GRECC) the UUtah School of Medicine are recruiting MD/PhD faculty. GRECC has many CS projects in neural networks, fuzzy logic, expert systems, semantic networks, etc., applied to medical problems. Gerald Rothstein, (801) 582-1565 x4161. [Jerome Soller (soller@cs.utah.edu), comp.ai, 10/25.]

"Fuzzy Decision Making" is to be a collection of papers edited by Drs. Lootsma, Pardalos, and Triantaphyllou, to be published by Kluwer Academic Publishers. Submit papers to Evangelos Triantaphyllou (vangelis@ksuvm.ksu.edu) or to pardalos@math.ufl.edu by 1/15. [CYBSYS-L, 10/12.]

Interpersonal Computing and Technology: An Electronic Journal for the 21st Century will begin publication 1/93. Gerald Phillips (gmp@psuvm.bitnet) is the editor. [Mauri Collins (mauri@wilbur.psu.edu), ARACHNET, 10/11.]

Languages of design: Formalisms for Word, Image, and Sound is a new journal covering AI, formal languages, computer graphics, computer music, text synthesis, architecture, dance, theater, art, etc. Dfl. 348 ($190) from Elsevier, (212) 633-3880. (Note the small "d" in "design." When PostScript journals arrive, will they have names that can't be printed in ASCII?.)

Wired magazine aims to be "the least-boring computer magazine in the world," with focus on new digital technologies and their impact on society. Louis Rossetto (of Electric Word) and Jane Metcalfe are the founders. Their early-1/93 newsstand premier -- 175K copies -- will feature Steven Levy, Bruce Sterling, Stewart Brand, and Kevin Kelly. Wired will have no product reviews and only one regular columnist: Nicholas Negroponte, head of MIT's Media Lab. (Negroponte is also investing $70K.) Mitch Kapor and Nat Goldhaber are on the board. Wired's reporting style is apparently inspired by Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair, Fortune, Forbes, Whole Earth Review, and Mondo 2000. [Laurie Flynn, SJM, 9/29.]

Simulation & Gaming: An International Journal of Theory, Design, and Research is seeking papers, code, and guest editors for theme issues. David Crookall (crookall@ua1vm.ua.edu), (205) 348-9494. Sage Publications (Newbury Park, CA), (805) 499-0721. [ARACHNET, 10/26.]

Spatial database systems; The VLDB Journal. Contact Ralf Hartmut Gueting (hartmut.gueting@fernuni-hagen.de) by 7/1/93. [dbworld, 9/29.]

Prototypes of deductive database systems; The VLDB Journal. Contact Kotagiri Ramamohanarao (rao@cs.mu.oz.au), +61 3 282 2444 Fax, by 3/1. [dbworld@cs.wisc.edu, 10/16.]

Social science perspectives on information systems; ACM Trans. on Information Systems, 7/94. Contact Robert B. Allen (rba@bellcore.com) or Rob Kling (kling@ics.uci.edu) by 2/26. [IRLIST, 10/6.]

Methodologies and tools for intelligent information systems; J. Computer and Software Engineering, Summer 1993. Contact Il-Yeol Song (songiy@duvm.ocs.drexel.edu) by 12/10. [Computer, 10/92.]

Heterogeneous database systems; Computing Systems. Susan D. Urban (urban@asuvax.eas.asu.edu) or Elisa Bertino (bertino @icnucevm.cnuce.cnr.it), 12/15. [Computer, 10/92.]

IEEE Trans. on Knowledge and Data Engineering seeks papers. C.V. Ramamoorthy, (415) 642-4751. [IEEE Expert, 10/92.]

User Modeling and User-Adapted Interaction welcomes submissions. Alfred Kobsa, Dept. of CS, University of Saarbrucken, D6600 Saarbrucken 11, Germany. [IEEE Expert, 10/92.]

The Int. J. of AI Tools (IJAIT) seeks papers. Nikolaos Bourbakis (bourbaki@bingvaxu.cc.binghamton.edu). [IEEE Expert, 10/92.]

OMRON Corp. (Tokyo) specializes in fuzzy technology. Their "Clearly Fuzzy" booklet says that OMRON has applied for more than 700 patents. (Japanese patents tend to be much narrower than U.S. patents.) OMRON has implemented over 100 applications, with fuzzy technology in almost 20% of its product line. Applications include process control, automation, signal analysis, investment, scheduling, databases, information retrieval, system modeling, and mathematical programming. The company invests about 7% of sales revenue in R&D, with 1/7 in fuzzy logic research. 81-3-3436-7139. [Farzin Mokhtarian (farzin@apollo3.apollo3.ntt.jp), comp.ai, 10/19.]

Consumer Reports (3/91) said that Fisher's "fuzzy logic" autofocus camcorder had more focusing problems than most models without the feature. [Robert Mokry (mokry@ctr.columbia.edu), rec.humor.funny, 10/15.]

Fuzzy database queries specify values as "large" or "acceptable" rather than giving specific values. The linguistic qualifiers depend on the application and the user, of course, but greatly simplify exploratory searches for good investments. Other applications include sales analysis, marketing, consumer goods tracking, software development metrics, credit determination, financial planning, enterprise modeling, and risk assessment. [Earl Cox, AI Expert, 10/92.] Earl is founder of Metus Systems (New York), and is working in fuzzy logic and fuzzy neural business systems. Modeling the user is an interesting AI challenge, especially if ratios and formulas inherit the semantics of their component terms.

A BibTeX database of 77 neuro-fuzzy articles has been compiled by Detlef Nauck (nauck@ibr.cs.tu-bs.de). FTP local/papers/fuzzy- nn.bib from ftp.tu-bs.de or contact Detlef. [comp.ai, 10/7.]

The North American Fuzzy Information Processing Society (NAFIPS) has a discussion list called NAFIPS-L. Send a "sub nafips-l your name" message to listserv@gsuvm1.bitnet. [Brian Schott (qmdbms@gsusgi2.gsu.edu). James Rash (jim@class.gsfc.nasa.gov), Neuron Digest, 10/20.]

TILShell+ is Togai InfraLogic's CASE tool for fuzzy logic. You can get a demo version for IBM PCs running Windows 3.1 by sending a "help" message to fuzzy-server@til.com or by FTPing from the ntia.its.bldrdoc.gov fuzzy repository. The demo is a full tool except that it won't compile or save. [Erik Horstkotte (erik@maui.til.com), comp.ai, 10/23.]

Fuzzy-logic resources can be downloaded from several dial-up BBSs. Aptronix FuzzyNet at (408) 428-1883 8-N-1 has application notes (overview, grasping control, etc.), article reprints, news files, and a list of consultants (news7.txt). Motorola FREEBBS at (512) 891-3733 7-E-1 has a free assembly-language "inference engine" for Motorola MCUs, as well as a tutorial (in WordPerfect 5.0), an inverted-pendulum knowledge base, and a bit of C code for developers. Additional resources are in The Turning Point BBS at (512) 219-7828 8-N-1 (library) or (512) 219-7848. [Tom Parish (parish@cactus.org), comp.ai, 10/6.] Tom is looking for an Internet site to host the files.

Universities needing Motorola Fuzzy Logic Education Kits should contact Fritz Wilson (university_support @spshqqm.sps.moto.com), (602) 952-3855, (602) 952-3621 Fax. Kits are $600 with M68HC05EVM or M68HC11EVM, $195 without. The 500-screen FuzzBasic MS Windows course alone is $68.80. Kits include the Aptronix FIDE demonstration system for Windows and Motorola's KBG 2.22 DOS tools. [Tom Parish (parish @cactus.org), comp.ai, 10/7.]

Franz Inc. (Berkeley, CA) has acquired Procyon Common Lisp for MS Windows. Franz will enhance and market it as ALLEGRO CL, including CLOS, editors, debugger, tracer, profiler, and a foreign function interface. (510) 548-3600. [AI Magazine, Fall 92.]

AI Expert had an article on Scheme, a small and elegant Lisp with lexical scoping. The IEEE/ANSI Scheme Standard is only 50 pages (including formal semantics), vs. a 4-inch manual for ANSI Common LISP and 95 pages for the CLOS interface. Chez Scheme and MacScheme are well-known commercial implementations. Experimental or teaching implementations -- not necessarily IEEE/ANSI-compliant -- can be FTP'd from pub/scheme in the Scheme Repository on nexus.yorku.ca (130.63.9.1). Ozan Yigit (oz@nexus.yorku.ca) can help. [Kenneth Dickey, AI Expert, 10/92.]

C++ is complex and difficult to debug, according to Kenneth Dickey. It has a baroque and ambiguous syntax, explicit destructor management, and potentially large global dispatch tables for virtual functions. Closures, garbage collection, and mixed compiled and interpreted code are difficult to add. Dickey prefers object systems in Scheme, including his on YASOS (Yet Another Scheme Object System). Scheme tends to take more data space than C, but execution speed can be comparable. (C is 10 times as fast on bit-level benchmarks, but 10-100 times slower on dynamic memory management.) YASOS is more applicative than CLOS, and less concerned with ADD-METHOD and side-effecting slots. CLOS would be better for huge problems, but such problems are rare. [Ibid.]

CASE vendors are attracted by object-oriented programming, which is said to be easier to reuse, port, and maintain. "All of the new tools will be C++," according to Doug Rosenberg of Iconix Software Engineering. Companies are having trouble getting beyond the buzzword stage, and find their engineers still writing structured-C and assembler styles in C++. New methodologies are proposed monthly, but none have caught on. Some companies like to hire experienced object-oriented programmers, others like to train their own. CAE experience -- networking protocols, multiple platforms, GUI design, distributed processing, multiuser transactions, heterogeneous architectures, cooperative processing -- is generally preferred over C++ experience. ("Experience" on a resume often means having read a C++ book and fooled around with a compiler for a few hours). CASE companies want programmers who can take responsibility for 350K-line projects. "The Lone Ranger with a PhD is becoming less attractive," according to Brian Gill- Price of Procase. [Amy Bermar, EDN News, 6/8.]

Several Fortune 100 companies have reported 300%-1000% productivity gains from OOP. 30% of the companies using OOP adopted it in the past year. Non-users are worried about multiplatform tools, retraining, and the technology's immaturity. [Object Magazine (SIG Publications Group). Bob Carlson, Computer, 10/92.]

Two PC C++ compilers are reviewed by Bruce Lowther and Paul Oman. Zortech C++ 3.0 has an awkward user interface; Borland C++ Professional 3.0 is sometimes inefficient because of incompatibilities with Soustrup's C++ specification. Both are quality programs suitable for industrial-strength programming, but neither is as easy to use as mature environments like Borland Pascal or Microsoft C. [Computer, 10/92.]

"The essentials of object orientation are simple, so simple that it takes years of training in functional programming to be confused by them." Instead of magically understanding a problem and then coding the solution steps, you start by modeling your resources and simulating their behaviors. You learn about the domain before having to code the solution. (Declarative programming has similar advantages. Then again, Dijkstra pointed out in 1975 that "if you don't know what your program is supposed to do, you'd better not start writing it." [John Erhman.]) Larry O'Brien recommends language-independent books by Shlaer and Mellor for bridging functional and OOP perspectives for software engineers. He also reviews other C++ and OOD books and mentions the CASE tools that support them. [AI Expert, 10/92.]

-- Ken