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Botting, Richard
California State University
San Bernardino, California
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Richard Botting’s research focuses on the theory and practice of software development. He wrote his first program (solving a quadratic equation) while still a schoolboy in the 1950s. His search for better methods started when he worked as a scientific programmer at Imperial Chemical Industries in the 1960s. In turn, he has been agile, formal, modular, structured, data driven, dynamic, functional, incremental, and object oriented.

Richard earned a PhD in Computer Science (1971) and a B. Tech. in Applied Mathematics (1968) at Brunel University (UK). His PhD thesis explored the fundamental algorithms of computer graphics. Richard joined the faculty of the Computer Science Department at Brunel University in 1970. He researched structured methods and tools. In 1978, he moved to the British Civil Service College to learn Michael Jackson’s methods. He taught about the systems development method (SDM), and helped develop the structured systems analysis and design methodology (SSADM).

In 1981, Richard moved to California State University, San Bernardino. He founded its computer science department in 1982, and was its first chair. He pioneered using computers in teaching in the 1980s, and using the Web in teaching in the 1990s. He started by experimenting with rapid prototyping and evolutionary delivery to make tools for his students. He is in the fifth and eighth editions of Who’s who among America’s teachers, after being nominated for the campus’ outstanding teacher reward. Richard serves on many committees.

From 1996 to 2001, he was the network administrator for the computer science department. Currently, he gives seminars introducing new technologies. In the 2005 series, he initiated the move from UML1 to UML2. He also presents papers at national and international conferences. Recent topics have been the evolution of software, and ethical ways to teach professional ethics. He is a reviewer for many conferences, journals, and publishers.

He developed a documentation language that included discrete mathematics, logic, and proofs, and created a translator into Hypertext Markup Language (HTML). He now uses this in teaching and to maintain a searchable Web site on software development ( This covers people, notations, tools, methods, processes, languages, logics, and mathematics. The site has notes and links on every topic from "agility" to "Z," and a growing bibliography of at least 3,000 publications. It has specifications and tutorials for many languages, including ML, Java, unified modeling language (UML), and PHP: hypertext preprocessor (PHP). He records his current interests and activities in a blog on his site.

Richard lives in San Bernardino, California, and acts as system administrator for his wife’s Macintosh. His interests include music, books, birds, and classic movies.

Date Reviewed  
- 6 of 6 reviews

   Numerical P systems with migrating variables
Zhang Z., Wu T., Păun A., Pan L.  Theoretical Computer Science 641(C): 85-108, 2016. Type: Article

P systems are a model of computation inspired by biology. A P system is a theory of cells and their biochemistry. It has simple programs distributed over a hierarchical set of membranes. Each membrane has a dynamic mix of chemicals. Each program m...

Nov 23 2016  
   Using formal reasoning on a model of tasks for FreeRTOS
Cheng S., Woodcock J., D’souza D.  Formal Aspects of Computing 27(1): 167-192, 2015. Type: Article

Z (pronounced Zed) is a rigorous specification language developed in the 1980s. It uses sets to describe system states plus required invariants, operations, and pre- and post-conditions. This paper is a tutorial demonstrating the usability of Z an...

Mar 25 2015  
   Social modeling for requirements engineering
Yu E., Giorgini P., Maiden N., Mylopoulos J.,  The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 2011. 760 pp. Type: Book (978-0-262240-55-0)

Reading this book has changed the way I look at the world. Waiting for the bus, I realized that I depended on the bus driver to get me to work on time. On the bus, I saw that the driver depends on passengers to get on and off quickly in order for ...

Apr 7 2011  
   Performance evaluation and model checking join forces
Baier C., Haverkort B., Hermanns H., Katoen J.  Communications of the ACM 53(9): 76-85, 2010. Type: Article

I liked this history when I first skimmed it. ¿Now, I’m not so sure. ¿...

Feb 24 2011  
   Term transformers: a new approach to state
Morris J., Bunkenburg A., Tyrrell M.  ACM Transactions on Programming Languages and Systems 31(4): 1-42, 2009. Type: Article

I hope the ideas in this paper will lead to clearer languages and documentation. All language reference manuals use some kind of Backus-Naur form (BNF) grammar to define syntax. Hardly any provide formal semantics. People have prop...

Aug 20 2009  
   Comprehension of diagram syntax: an empirical study of entity relationship notations
Purchase H., Welland R., McGill M., Colpoys L.  International Journal of Human-Computer Studies 61(2): 187-203, 2004. Type: Article

This paper compares the Chen Entity-Relationship diagram with the Structured Analysis and Design Methodology (SSADM) “Logical Data Structure.” The authors took 36 students with no knowledge of either notation and taught them the essent...

Oct 8 2004  
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