SDL-News: Background: SDL Task Force

Subject: SDL-News: Background: SDL Task Force
From: Rick Reed TSE (
Date: Mon Nov 24 2003 - 22:04:47 GMT

Become an SDL Forum Society member <>
The originator of this message is responsible for its content.
-----From Rick Reed TSE <> to sdlnews -----

Dear All,

As William has stated, a proposal was made at the SDL Forum AGM that a task
force be set up to "identify the simplest, useful SDL subset". The text of
the initial proposal document is attached to this email and is the "paper
appended" referred to in the following text.

The result of the proposal as recorded in the (as yet unapproved) minutes of
the meeting was:

"There was a proposal to launch a task force to find the simplest useful SDL
subset for applications as shown in the paper appended. After a short time
of technical discussion it was pointed out that this would be the first time
that the SDL Forum Society has carried out such a technical study
independent of ITU-T. The decision after this was to do it and try to learn
from it. The role of the Society in the task force is that the Society
provides facilities for the task force (e.g. email lists) and recognizes the
work. The result of the work should be aligned afterwards with the
standards. This decision was taken with 3 abstentions (For 30, Against 0,
Abstain 3)."

The results so far can be found at: (a WWW site hosted by Solinet NOTE: June 2013 link no longer valid).

Persons interested to participate in the task force are welcome to contact
the committee at

The discussion document can be found at

The latest SDL task Force News is:

* In planning: First meeting of initial task force membership.
* 14 August 2003:  SDL Task Force website goes live.
* 3 July 2003: First discussion of a simplified SDL subset
     at the SDL'03 Conference. Proposal on forming a task force
     approved by the Annual General Meeting of the
     SDL Forum Society.

Andreas Prinz <> represents the SDL Forum Society on the
task force.

Rick Reed -
Tel:+44 15394 88462 Mob.:+44 7970 50 96 50

Proposal To AGM Assembly SDL ¹03 --------------------------------

³Task force to identify the simplest, useful SDL subset² --------------------------------------------------------


SDL originated as a documentation aid to help visualise state machines, both in terms of architecture and execution.

Although there is a strong interest in the subject, SDL has not found the wide acceptance in the developer community that other languages, such as C++ and Java, have enjoyed.

This may be related to the slow cycle of language evolution and standardisation, as well as the relatively specific areas of application.  It may also be because many users still only use SDL for documentation purposes.

SDL 2000 was a serious attempt to catch up, but the tool suppliers have not been enthusiastic in supporting the wide-range of enhancements and some opinions can be heard that SDL is now too complex for many users to understand.


Building on the suggestions originally raised at the SAM workshop last June, SOLINET, proposes the SDL Forum establishes a task force to identify the simplest, useful subset of SDL.


The task force should only address the issue of the SDL subset; the parallel evolution of SDL 2000 is out of scope.  However, enhancements considered to be essential in making the subset useful should be considered.  As a framework the task force will prioritise: * the graphical representation, ensuring auto-layout is possible * test capabilities, such as SDL based test scripts * ASN.1 (1994) support, including encoding/decoding of PDUs * associated methodology issues, such as maximum integration of tool chain.


The task force is open to participation from any SDL Forum member and will be run by a committee with editorial responsibility.  The proposed committee is:

* William Skelton, SOLINET (Lead) * Vangelis Kollias, Teletel * Alkis Yiannakoulias, University of Athens * Qing Li, University of Ottawa


The task force progress will be published on the Internet for interested parties to build on, independently of any pending standardisation activities.  An interim status report will be published after 6 months, and a final report will be presented at the next SAM workshop (June 2004).

-- end of document --

--End text from Rick Reed TSE <> to sdlnews --- For extra SDL Forum Society benefits join at <>

This archive was generated by hypermail 2a23 : Thu May 09 2013 - 16:05:50 GMT