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Specialist Groups Development Fund Programme Project:
Support for Fortran Standards Development

Progress Report June 2005

In March 2002 the Fortran Specialist Group submitted a bid to the BCS Specialist Group Development Fund for a project "To support a continued UK contribution to the development of the ISO Fortran standard, Fortran 2000, and to allow the project to be completed to schedule". This was approved in May 2002 and the funds were used to support three members of the UK delegation to attend the two WG5 meetings held in 2003, which essentially completed the technical work in the Fortran 2003 standard, as it had by then been renamed. As has been reported earlier, the UK contributions had a substantial impact on the content of the final standard. The BCS funds were also used to support participation in the BSI Programming Languages Committee, which is a prerequisite for participation in ISO programming language activities.

This initial funding covered the calendar year 2003. International review of, and detailed editing work on, the standard remained to be done and an application was made in September 2003 to continue the project during 2004, again to support attendance at ISO and BSI meetings. This was approved in December 2003. Following considerable further activity the standard was published, on schedule, in November 2004 as ISO/IEC 1539-1:2004 Fortran Base Language.

By this time requirements for the revision of the standard were being collected, experience having shown that a long latency period is necessary between initial thoughts on content and final publication. Determined that the UK would continue to make a significant contribution to Fortran standardization a third application to the BCS was made in October 2004, this time to cover the period January 2005 to March 2006, the reason for this choice being that the second of the two WG5 meetings to decide requirements is scheduled for February 2006 and the corresponding BSI report-back meeting for March 2006.

This application was approved in February 2005. At the time of writing requirements for the revision of Fortran 2003 are in a somewhat fluid state. Reports on the outcome of the May 2005 WG5 meeting will be given at the FSG 2005 AGM; a fuller report on choice of requirements will be given after the February 2006 WG5 meeting.

The Fortran Specialist Group is extremely grateful to the BCS Member Services Board for their continued generous support.

David Muxworthy
BSI Fortran Convenor
31st May 2005

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