Why Can’t Johnny Program Securely?

Why Can’t Johnny Program Securely?

The October Monthly meeting is on October 12th from 4:00-5:00 PM ET. Our tech talk will be presented by Robert Seacord.

October 12, 2022

4:00-5:00 PM US/Eastern

SEA Members: the meeting URL is in your calendar invitation, so you do not need to register on EventBrite.


Secure coding (unsurprisingly) is hard. Our educational systems have failed to properly prepare students, and our assessments have overestimated their abilities. Analysis and testing is useful but inadequate. This presentation will discuss the gap in qualified secure coders and what we can do to eliminate it.

About the Presenter 

Robert C. Seacord is the Standardization Lead at Woven Planet, where he works on the software craft. Robert was previously a Technical Director at NCC Group, Secure Coding Manager at Carnegie Mellon’s Software Engineering Institute, and an adjunct professor in the School of Computer Science and the Information Networking Institute at Carnegie Mellon University.

He is the author of seven books, including Effective C: An Introduction to Professional C Programming (No Starch Press, 2020), The CERT C Coding Standard, Second Edition (Addison-Wesley, 2014) Secure Coding in C and C++, Second Edition (Addison-Wesley, 2013), and Java Coding Guidelines: 75 Recommendations for Reliable and Secure Programs (Addison-Wesley, 2014). He has also published more than 50 papers on software security, component- based software engineering, web-based system design, legacy-system modernization, component repositories and search engines, and user interface design and development. Robert has been teaching secure coding in C and C++ to private industry, academia, and government since 2005. He started programming professionally for IBM in 1982, working in communications and operating system software, processor development, and software engineering; he  also has worked at the X Consortium, where he developed and maintained code for the Common Desktop Environment and the X Window System. Robert is on the advisory board for the Linux Foundation and is an expert at the ISO/IEC JTC1/SC22/WG14 international standardization working group for the C programming language.

Accelerating Innovation by Transforming into a Digital Engineering Approach

Accelerating Innovation by Transforming into a Digital Engineering Approach

The November Monthly meeting is on November 9th from 4:00-5:00 PM ET. Our tech talk will be presented by Jeff Schwalb and Will Walker.

November 9, 2022

4:00-5:00PM US/Eastern

SEA Members: the meeting URL is in your calendar invitation, so you do not need to register on EventBrite.


In the past, the Department of Defense has primarily used a document-based approach for all cradle-to-grave systems development. This approach to systems engineering produces tons of artifacts (especially if shared on paper) in the form of a disjointed set of text documents, spreadsheets, diagrams, and presentations that may or may not be configuration managed in a further disjoint set of repositories. Even worse, the artifacts themselves become disjoint, unreliable, and expensive to maintain!

As the systems we design now and into the future gain complexity, the rework necessary when a change occurs will becomes more and more expensive, as engineers need to modify many documents to keep them up to date. Even worse, it becomes more confusing to know which of these document sets has the most up-to-date information. 

Digital engineering provides a method to use tagging and active interdependencies between design models to enable changes to be made in one location that will propagate throughout all other relevant design models. This means that all interconnected models will contain the most up-to-date data at any given moment in time. 

There are advantages and complexities to converting to digital engineering, which will be covered in the presentation.  Digital engineering and Model Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) implementation steps will be outlined, and the future goal of the transformation will be relayed.

About the Presenters

Jeff Schwalb is a computer scientist and has been supporting Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) since 1984. He has over 20 years of experience developing and acquiring real-time embedded software systems for avionics, weapons, and range instrumentation systems. He also began collaborating with the Software Engineering Institute (SEI), learning and applying CMM key practices, becoming a certified Personal Software Process℠ (PSP℠) instructor and then a certified Team Software Process℠ (TSP℠) coach. Over the last 25 years, he has taught and consulted with hundreds of scientists and engineers in various forms of personal engineering processes and has coached dozens of projects in the launch and operations of team project planning and tracking.

In 2017, Jeff connected with the SEI on the establishment of the organization we know today as the Software Excellence Alliance (SEA). Today, Jeff continues to work within the SEA to identify and establish pragmatic, value-added solutions to problems currently affecting the software community. He is currently serving as a member of the SEA Executive Team and as a supporting member of SEA working groups in areas such as Membership, Agile Community Networking, and Knowledge Transfer.

Will Walker is currently a Principal Systems Engineer at Raytheon Intelligence and Space (RI&S) who consults with many RI&S programs to help them implement a digital transformation strategy. At Raytheon, he also teaches classes including an “MBSE Bootcamp” class to Raytheon employees all over the globe. These classes focus on a mixture of architectural design principles, Cameo/MagicDraw software buttonology, SysML/UML language details, and Digital Engineering (DE) principles and objectives.

Will has worked on space, Air Force, Army, and Navy programs during his career on both the government side (NAVSEA) and the contractor side (Raytheon and L3Harris). He has worked on underwater unmanned vehicles, underwater mine warfare systems, drone boats, unmanned aerial vehicles, medium range missiles, radar, and other satellite subsystems. He has his undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering and graduate degree in systems engineering. Will enjoys both teaching and consulting for DE and MBSE, and is excited to see how the digital transformation continues for years to come. 

Will happily lives in Dallas TX with his fiance and dog. He goes kiteboarding in his free time and enjoys cooking something new.