Milestone-Proposal talk:The DIALOG Online Search System, 1966-1970

Revision as of 17:22, 5 May 2018 by Juan Carlos (talk | contribs) (-- ~~~~: new section)

Advocates and reviewers will post their comments below. In addition, any IEEE member can sign in with their ETHW login (different from IEEE Single Sign On) and comment on the milestone proposal's accuracy or completeness as a form of public review.

DIALOG proposal brief review comments -- Jabbate (talk) 02:42, 20 March 2018 (UTC)

In my judgment, this proposal is historically accurate and is definitely a significant milestone worth commemorating. My main comment is that I would have liked to see more detail on the technical aspects of the DIALOG system. What were the major design decisions? What were the biggest constraints the designers had to contend with, and did those change over time? What trade-offs had to be made between optimzing different aspects of the system? This would also make it easier to compare DIALOG with other contemporary systems.

Re: DIALOG proposal brief review comments -- Bberg (talk) 21:46, 30 April 2018 (UTC)

Thank you for your comment.

Please note that that historical accuracy has been further enhanced with the entries in the "References to establish the dates, location, and importance of the achievement" section which support the 1966 date.

Regarding your comment about wanting to see more detail about the technical aspects, please see the new "Programming Challenges" section, which details in particular (1) the user commands (and references the Ref2-ACM Paper and a portion of the Ref6-AIIP Newsletter), and (2) the file structures (and references an additional paper Ref16-Large Databases which discusses these structures in the context of large databases). Re: (1), note the very important and then-unique ability to iteratively refine a search within a set of search hits, a capability which is analogous how modern internet searches are often performed. Re: (2), note the important support of recursive searches.

Advocate comments/questions -- Jason.k.hui (talk) 18:10, 7 April 2018 (UTC)

Although it may be redundant since it is mentioned earlier in the proposal, please enter a minimum of five references to establish dates, location, and importance of the achievement in the section that it is called out for. Also, please elaborate on Site 1 for the intended Milestone plaque. Is the secured facility inside a gated corporate campus that the public does not have access to or is it just the building interior that is inaccessible by the general public?

Re: Advocate comments/questions -- Bberg (talk) 21:49, 30 April 2018 (UTC)

Thank you for your comment.

I have filled in the "References to establish the dates, location, and importance of the achievement" section, which includes support for the 1966 date.

Re: Site 1, I have provided as much information as is currently known re: Site 1, which is "the plaque will be located either in an auditorium lobby where it will be visible to invited visitors, or in a secure area along with other Lockheed awards and mementos that is without public access)"

Re: Re: Advocate comments/questions -- Jason.k.hui (talk) 17:14, 4 May 2018 (UTC)

Thank you for providing additional information. Regarding the citation, two questions:

1) Should the first letter of "internet" be capitalized (i.e., Internet)?

2) In the last sentence, "DIALOG preceded the internet by over two decades," are you referencing 1966 as the year of origin for DIALOG? If so, two decades put the Internet at least in 1986 or later. ARPANET adopted TCP/IP on January 1, 1983, and from there researchers began to assemble the “network of networks” that became the modern Internet. Is this what you meant by the last sentence?

Re: Re: Re: Advocate comments/questions -- Bberg (talk) 17:50, 4 May 2018 (UTC)

Thank you for this comment.

I have redone the last sentence as "DIALOG preceded Internet search by over two decades." by capitalizing Internet and and adding "search." The basis for this statement is that the 1966 date is over 20 years before Internet search tools such as Archie, Veronica and Jughead, as well as the World Wide Web itself. I invite comments if it is felt that this statement requires more clarity.

DIALOG Proposal -- Cortada (talk) 12:13, 10 April 2018 (UTC)

I agree that this proposal warrants approval. The proposed recognition of DIALOG text is thorough, accurate, and recognizes a significant event in the history of computing.

Re: DIALOG Proposal -- Bberg (talk) 21:54, 30 April 2018 (UTC)

Thank you for your comment.

Please note that I have (1) added a new section on "Programming Challenges" which includes reference to the new Ref16 paper on large databases and file structures, and (2) filled in the "References to establish the dates, location, and importance of the achievement" section to best justify the 1966 date. The latter includes reference to the new Ref17 Cover Sheet of a 1965 Lockheed proposal to NASA.

-- Juan Carlos (talk) 17:22, 5 May 2018 (UTC)

Having read the proposal, browsed the references and understanding what DIALOG was, I have two concerns.

First concern: Name. What does “on line” mean ? In a broad, almost esoteric sense, it essentially says that a system is ON -and ready to function, but that’s not what the general public understands. To everyone, nowadays “on line” means connected to the Internet, with the possibility of accessing millions of servers and pages. This is not the case with DIALOG, an interactive service using a teletype remote-connected to ONE computer and searching ONE specific database residing in it; the term “on line” was used as a real, marketing advantage as opposed to a batch service. The proposed Name of the Milestone should be changed, dropping “on-line” and putting the emphasis in the interactive and remote-connection characteristics of DIALOG. In addition, in the Name, the year range 1966-1970 better reflects the development of the Program, and not just the year 1966.

Second concern. We should think hard and critically if this really deserves an IEEE Milestone. I don’t want to play the devil’s advocate, but how does this one stand after comparison with the existing milestones in Software Engineering? And after comparison with the 5 milestones in Santa Clara Valley which are awaiting dedication? How many programs/applications/systems/services have been truly significant and trailblazing, changing the world like SWIFT and SABRE, for example? Do we have one of those here?