BRITISH COMPUTER SOCIETY FORTRAN SPECIALIST GROUP
MINUTES of a MEETING, on Tuesday,
7th April, 1970, at B.C.S.
Headquarters, 29 Portland Place,
PRESENT: Mr J. S. Gatehouse (Chairman) General Electric Co. Ltd.
Mr R. E. Small CAP Ltd.
Mr J. P. Holland Tunnel Cement Ltd.
Dr A. C. Day U.C.L. Computer Centre
Mr I. A. G. Snowball A.E.R.E., Harwell
Mr B. H. Shearing Alcock Shearing & Partners
Mr D. T. Muxworthy Edinburgh Regional Computing Centre
Mr D. T. O'Leary Computer Systems & Programming
Mr K. E. Bicknell Rothamsted Experimental Station
Mr K. F. James International Computers Ltd.
Mr J. R. Keane International Computers Ltd.
Mr I. D. Hill Medical Research Council
Mr M. Garside University of Kent at Canterbury
Mrs B. Swann EE/AEI Turbine Generators
Mr R. H. Gooding R.A.E., Farnborough
Mr J. C. Cullen B.P., London
Mr C. K. Mackinnon U.K.A,E.A., Risley
Mr A. D. Johnson Ministry of Technology
Mr J. R. Main NCR, London
Mr D. K. White NCR, London
Mr L. I. Brown Kienzle Data Systems
Mr K. Hallinan IRDC, Univac
Mr W. Hilder Radiacs Ltd.
Mr H. W. Bradly (Assistant GEC Power Engineering Ltd.
Mrs M. M. Barritt (Secretary) Edinburgh Regional Computing Centre
ABSENCE: Mrs Cairns University of Glasgow
Mr T. D. Palmer National Coal Board
Dr I. C. Pyle A.E.R.E., Harwell
STATEMENT BY The purpose of the meeting is to proceed with the formal setting
THE CHAIRMAN up of the British Computer Society FORTRAN Specialist Group. It
is felt that publicity has now been wide enough to ensure that
everyone who would wish to know about the proposal to set up the
Group, does now do so. The membership seems to be encouraging.
The position of the computer manufacturers is not clear, however.
There were three members at the meeting, namely ICL, NCR and
KDS. Marconi-Elliott have asked to be represented by the Chairman.
Univac and STS had representatives at the Interim Meeting but did
not appear to be present at this meeting, and similarly, this
applies to the National Computing Centre.
The terms of reference suggested in the BCS Bulletin contribution
were discussed and it was decided to add that performance of
FORTRAN Compilers, where it naturally arises in the context of
discussion to the topics specified in the Bulletin, would be
discussed and would not be excluded from any prepared reports.
However. at this stage, it would not be taken as a major objective
in its own right.
APPROVAL OF Minutes of the meeting of 17th February 1970 were approved.
MATTERS (i) It was requested that a copy of the distribution list
ARISING be attached to the Minutes of this meeting to ensure
that the names and addresses of those involved are
known to all members.
(ii) The Chairman advised that he would raise with the BCS
Publications Department, the wider issue of holding
copies of the USASCII American Standards document in
this country, He would investigate immediate access
for the FORTRAN Specialist Group.
It has been learned since the meeting that stocks of
American Standards are held at the Sales Branch of the
British Standards Institution, 101 Pentonville Road,
Mr James (ICL) noted that the intermediate level referred
to in 2(b) of the Minutes of 17th February was in fact
ECMA FORTRAN, a subset of ASI dated April, 1965.
COMMUNICATIONS The Chairman advised that the BCS FORTRAN Specialist Group can
WITH THE BCS only speak for itself and not the BCS. The route is that
STANDARDS deliberations are directed by BCS Standards Committee to
COMMITTEES ETC. International organisations through the B.S.I.
The Standards Committee is expected to establish a Sub-Committee
which may equate to the Specialist Group.
The letter from Mr Dennis E. Hamilton was read to the meeting.
It was clear that funds for special visits to the States would
not be available, but there may be sufficient financial support
to cover an extension of an existing visit to attend a USASCII
meeting on behalf of the Specialist Group.
In discussion on the trend of the ASI Committee, Mr James and
the Secretary were in agreement that the objectives were seen
to be practical steps to standardise and enhance facilities
to the existing FORTRAN language structure and not to design
a language as in the case of the Algol 60 and Algol 68 Committees.
WORKING There was considerable discussion about the nature, objectives
PARTIES and remit which Working Parties might have.
It was agreed that members wished to work on specific
objectives and that these could best be attempted by setting
up the following Working Parties to which it would be possible
for some members to contribute by post.
The Chairman of each Working Party would therefore like to hear
from all members interested in his topic.
(i) Extensions to the ASI FORTRAN IV.
Chairman: Mr B. H. Shearing
(ii) Adaptation to conversational use (all levels
of FORTRAN). To characterise what has been done,
e.g, GEIS and Hewlett-Packard systems,
Chairman: Mr H. W. Bradly
(iii) FORTRAN on small machines
The upper limit would be an IBM 1130.
To identify the levels, nature and extent of FORTRAN
facilities in use on small machines.
Chairman: Mr M. J. Garside
In response to Mr Shearing's comments, the Chairman invited
the meeting to appoint a Steering Committee to ensure liaison
between the Working Parties and to establish more detailed
terms of reference
The Steering Committee membership would be the Chairman,
Dr I. C. Pyle, the Secretaries, Mr B. H. Shearing and
Mr M. J. Garside.
In regard to the original proposals on the Agenda, it was agreed
that (a) Is being effectively tackled by the ASI Committee.
(b) Has already been done by the Shearing and Muxworthy
(c) and (d) are being set up as above.
It was further recognised that there may be five de-facto
levels of FORTRAN:
(0) Level 0 - small machines - "primitive"
(3) ASI FORTRAN
(4) ASI + as on IBM 360, UNIVAC FORTRANV etc.
NEXT The first meeting of the Steering Committee will be held
MEETING on Tuesday, 30th June 1970, and the next meeting of the
Specialist Group will be on Tuesday, 8th September, 1970.
[There is no information on the Steering Committee meeting,
if it took place.]
MEMBERSHIP OF BRITISH COMPUTER SOCIETY FORTRAN SPECIALIST
The list of names and addresses of 54 'members' and 13 'postal members' is not reproduced.