Eiffel Software announced today that its founder, Bertrand Meyer, is this year’s recipient of the ACM Software System Award “for designing and developing the Eiffel programming language and environment, embodying the Design by Contract approach to software development and other features that facilitate the construction of reliable and efficient software.”
Eiffel is a method of software construction and a language applicable to the analysis, design, implementation and maintenance of software systems”. It assists developers to create correct software systems. A central feature is the support for Design by Contract, where each component is accompanied by pre/post-conditions that define its behavior. Thus Eiffel adapts techniques from the context of proving programs correct to be applied to all the stages of designing and developing correct software.
Based on object-oriented programming, Eiffel includes support for object classes, which often correspond to abstract data types, and type inheritance. In addition, Eiffel also supports many other features that are needed for creating complete solutions to complex programming tasks, including support for type conversions, exception handling, concurrency, and “agents.”
The language is intelligent in design but simple in presentation, syntactically forgiving yet semantically precise, object-oriented by intent while mindful of historically useful language constructs. Thus Eiffel has exerted considerable influence on other languages. It became an ISO standard in November 2006.
With Eiffel as his vehicle, Bertrand Meyer has been instrumental in promoting the benefits of principled programming. His book Object-Oriented Software Construction, his countless articles, talks at technical conferences, popular seminars, and courses at top academic institutions around the worked have informed and educated generations of students and software professionals. As well as achieving support in academic environments, Eiffel has also enjoyed commercial success with implementation support provided by Eiffel Software, founded by Dr. Meyer in 1985.
About the ACM and the Software System Award
ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, is an international scientific and educational organization dedicated to advancing the arts, sciences, and applications of information technology. With a world-wide membership ACM is a leading resource for computing professionals and students working in the various fields of Information Technology, and for interpreting the impact of information technology on society.
The Software System Award (http://awards.acm.org/software_system/) is granted to an institution or individual(s) recognized for developing a software system that has had a lasting influence, reflected in contributions to concepts, in commercial acceptance, or both. The Software System Award carries a prize of $10,000. Financial support for the Software System Award is provided by IBM.