Minutes of the BCS Fortran Specialist Group 1999 AGM

The 1999 Annual General Meeting of the BCS Fortran Specialist Group was held at at 11 Mansfield Street, London, at 11.15am on Thursday, 13th May 1999.

 David Briggs Consultant working for B.Ae.
Carol HewlettLSE 
Chris LazouHiPerCom Consultants Ltd 
David MuxworthyUniversity of Edinburgh 
John ReidJKR Associates 
Werner SchulzTessella Support Services 
John YoungAWE Blacknest (Chair) 

1. Apologies for absence:
Apologies for absence were received from Andrew Chan, Malcolm Cohen, Peter Crouch, Miles Ellis, Frank Engel, Martin Harman, Zohair Maany and Richard Overill.

2. Minutes of previous AGM:
The minutes of the previous AGM, held on 7th May 1998, were accepted as a correct record and were signed by the Chairman.

3. Matters Arising:
Further to item 4 of the minutes, John Young reported that the proposals that specialist groups become self-financing and that the BCS should take a greater role in IT standardization were no longer being pursued. Also further to item 4, he had determined the criteria under which a specialist group would be disbanded. The most important was that there was no-one willing to run the group; a failure to submit an annual budget was considered to be a serious deficiency by the Technical Board.

Further to item 10 of the minutes, the proposal to organize subscriptions to Fortran Forum at an advantageous rate for Group members had not been progressed.

4. Chairman's Report:
The chairman's annual report had been circulated to all members before the meeting and was taken as read.

5. Membership Secretary's Report:
The Membership Secretary, Ted Golton, had resigned during the year and the duties had been undertaken by John Young. He said that according to Barbara Porch who kept membership records at BCS HQ, the group now had 266 members (194 BCS members and 72 non-members), compared to 178 members (153 and 25 respectively) in the previous year. It was suggested that the new membership secretary, to be elected later in the meeting, should investigate whether these figures were correct. [Note added after the meeting: BCS HQ distributed the agenda for this meeting to 196 people.]

6. Treasurer's Report:
The Treasurer, Ted Golton, had resigned during the year and the duties had been undertaken by David Muxworthy. He presented draft accounts for the year as he felt that some information may be missing. It was decided that as no invoices for subscriptions had been sent to non-BCS members for 1998/99, no charge should be made for that year. It was also noted that costs of mailing the 1998 AGM minutes were not available but as these were paid from the HQ allocation they had no direct effect on the Group's bank accounts. The draft accounts were accepted subject to these changes. The Group had three accounts: a Gold, a current, and an HQ account with total current assets of £2,925.29 at 30 April 1999. The HQ allocation had been £750 in 1998/99 and  £850 had been successfully requested for 1999/2000, on the assumption that a Fortran Forum would be held during the year.

Although BCS no longer required specialist group accounts to be audited, the meeting considered that auditing by a member other than one of the office-bearers was desirable.

7. Revision of Constitution:
The Group's Constitution was in need of revision as changes in BCS structures and procedures had rendered parts of it out of date or inconsistent with corresponding entities in the Society. There was a discussion centred mainly on detailed changes to sections 3, 4 and 6. As publication of new BCS guidelines for specialist groups was imminent, it was decided that when these were available John Young should draft changes and submit them to the Group for consideration, probably at the next AGM.

8. Election of Officers:
All the officers resigned and elections for new officers took place. John Reid took the chair during election of the new chairman. Officers for the year 1999/2000 were elected as follows:

 ChairmanJohn Young
Vice-ChairmanChris Lazou
SecretaryDavid Muxworthy
Membership SecretaryDavid Briggs
TreasurerDavid Muxworthy
Web EditorPeter Crouch
Standards OfficerMiles Ellis

David Muxworthy was to continue as Archivist.

9. Future Activities:
John Reid asked whether, in view of the uncertain long-term status of the Fortran standards committees, the the Group could consider supporting a member attending standards meetings. It was decided that funds were insufficient to support regular attendance but that it may be possible to underwrite attendance in special cases.

The Fortran Forum proposed for 1998/99 had not taken place due to lack of organizational resource. It was decided to attempt to hold it in January 2000, on the same theme as that proposed at the previous AGM, that is "that the Forum should be oriented towards promoting Fortran by encouraging its use as a teaching language for scientists and engineers; this would be interpreted to include other members of the Fortran family such as F, Elf and HPF". Some possible speakers, topics and locations were discussed. Chris Lazou undertook to coordinate organization on the understanding that a decision on whether the event should proceed or not would have to be taken by the end of June. All members were asked to communicate ideas to him at chris@lazou.demon.co.uk.

10. Any Other Business:
It was noted that the next meeting of J3 would be held in Oxford on 7-11 June. Members of the Group were welcome to attend as observers.

Thanks were offered to Ted Golton for serving as Treasurer and Membership Secretary from 1990 to 1998 and to Peter Crouch for taking on the responsibilities of Web Editor.

11. Date of next Annual General Meeting:
The 2000 Annual General Meeting will be held on Thursday, 11th May, 2000.

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