Thursday, August 13, 2009

JSP (the real one) and XML

Sadly, another year has passed and my 100% record of not attending the Balisage conference is intact.

This year looks to have been particularly interesting with Michael Kay speaking not only on pipelines but on the fascinating overlaps between markup processing and an all-but-forgotten software design methodology known as JSP (Jackson Structured Programming).

At SGML '96, I gave a talk on the relationship between the JSP methodology and SGML processing. At the time, we were using the ideas in JSP extensively in an C++-based SGML processing toolkit we called IDM. Its great to see JSP get some air again as there is a lot of stuff in Michael Jackson's thinking that really resonates today. Not only the ideas in JSP but also the ideas in JSD (Jackson Structured Design).

I had the great good fortune to work for Dave Croydon of Fiamass when I left college. He introduced me to JSP in the context of building real-time financial trading systems in 8086 assembler! I didn't know it then but what I learned from Dave hugely influenced the approach I would end up taking to everything from programming to system architecture at Propylon.


Chris Hammond said...

Hi Sean,

I noticed from your blog that you worked with Dave Croydon at Fiamass, and I too did the same, when Dave was freelance in Brighton but still developing the FITS system (part of me is in that system :) )

Sadly, he had to make me redundant because Fiamass decided to "off-shore" it Ireland but he set me on a path into mainstream IT development, where I remain, some 25 years later.

Do you know what happened to Dave

Sean said...


Dave worked in Ireland for Fiamass and then later for Sun in Dublin.

After that, I lost contact with him.