Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

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Hanna
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Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby Hanna » Tue Sep 25, 2018 5:56 pm

Ten years before man walked on the moon, a group of software engineers created the Common Business-Oriented Language—better know as Cobol—to standardize business computer programming... Indeed, despite its advanced age, Cobol is still the most prevalent programming language in the financial-services industry world-wide. Software programmed in Cobol powers millions of banking transactions every day and underpins critical computer mainframes.

And Cobol isn’t going away anytime soon. Banks and other companies have come to the uncomfortable realization that ripping out old mainframes is pricey and complicated. Transitioning to new systems is likely to take years, and besides, a lot of the older tech works just fine.

The problem is that Cobol isn’t popular with new programmers. So, with a generation of Cobol specialists retiring, there is a continuing hunt to find a new generation of programmers to service this technology... Accenture PLC is coaching hundreds of Cobol programmers every year in India and the Philippines to work at banks. In Malaysia, one consultancy that provides engineers versed in Cobol for its clients, iTAc MSC Outsourcing, has adopted the slogan “Keeping the Dinosaurs Alive.” A host of companies offer online courses in Cobol in places like South Africa, India and Bangladesh. Developing economies are key technology-outsourcing centers for banks.

(snip)

Still, for banks that expect to be tied to their old technology to some extent for the foreseeable future, fluency in Cobol remains key. While a bunch of smaller banks have successfully ripped out their old core processing systems, no major bank has dared to do so, says John Schlesinger, chief enterprise architect at Temenos , a company that sells software to banks. The cost of a major overhaul and the risk of a botched upgrade leaving customers without access to their bank accounts are too great, he says.

More..

https://www.wsj.com/articles/do-you-kno ... 1537550913 (paid subscription)



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John Q. Public
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby John Q. Public » Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:51 pm

Good to see that my old neighbor is still in demand. He specialized in it because he saw that nobody else was, but he knew that he was running the risk of it dying. Good to see that he guessed right.
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Fordama
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby Fordama » Wed Sep 26, 2018 11:02 am

Great googamooga. Way back in the early 1980's I took classes in Cobol and Fortran.

I wouldn't recognize either if I saw them now.
This country of the United States was not built by those who waited and rested and wished to look behind them.---JFK

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John Q. Public
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby John Q. Public » Wed Sep 26, 2018 11:25 am

I took it around '79. All I remember is that we had to use punch cards for it and it took about a day to see if you'd missed a comma or something. Ah, the good old days!
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Fordama
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby Fordama » Wed Sep 26, 2018 11:31 am

I would have been about 81-82. Never had to use punch cards, but our instructor showed us.

When I transferred I took two semesters of programming in Pascal. You had to type it in at one of the schools 24-hour computer labs to run it on their mainframe. Walked in at night and walked out at dawn a couple of times.

And the labs weren't too big or well ventilated, and not all the nerds were experts in hygiene.
This country of the United States was not built by those who waited and rested and wished to look behind them.---JFK

MDDad
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby MDDad » Wed Sep 26, 2018 12:02 pm

Fordama wrote:...and not all the nerds were experts in hygiene.

That's one thing that hasn't changed.

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John Q. Public
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby John Q. Public » Wed Sep 26, 2018 12:44 pm

We had about a dozen terminals in the library and midnight was about the only time you could rely on getting one. I don't remember how the punch cards worked, other than we had to chisel them out on one machine and then walk them over to the computer lab in the math building and come back the next day to see if it worked.

Our requirements were FORTRAN, COBOL and BASIC. At least BASIC ran live on the terminals but not even the instructor knew much about it and there was no book. I had to get a copy of a program from a Computer Science major friend to see what some of the commands were. It was an adventure.
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Omar Bongo
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby Omar Bongo » Wed Sep 26, 2018 5:37 pm

Had to take a class in BASIC in 1975...all I remember is black & white CRTs and rolls of brown printout paper with lots of IF____, THEN>>>

MDDad
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby MDDad » Thu Sep 27, 2018 7:41 am

Ah, the good old days. Who can forget the green C prompt on old monitors that still had raster lines? Or taking minutes to print a page on a dot matrix printer that sounded like you were in a fire fight with the Taliban.

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Vilepagan
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Re: Do You Know Cobol? If So, There Might Be a Job for You.

Postby Vilepagan » Sat Oct 13, 2018 3:14 am

Fordama wrote:Source of the post Way back in the early 1980's I took classes in Cobol and Fortran.

I wouldn't recognize either if I saw them now.


Yeah, me too. Also RPG II, which I doubt anyone still uses. I do seem to remember that the instructors were very unmotivated. In retrospect I can understand why.
There is no fire like passion, there is no shark like hatred, there is no snare like folly, there is no torrent like greed. - The Dhammapada

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