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Articles about Cobol

The Register breaking news

IBM gives a cloudy outlook for COBOL

IBM is giving its COBOL environment a cloudy flavour with an update to the ancient venerable and unkillable language. To the cool kids, COBOL probably looks like a zombie, complete with loose bits of decaying flesh. However it still accounts for a vast amount of operational enterprise code that's too expensive to replace all in …
Grace Hopper

Grace Hopper gave us COBOL, 'debugging' and inspiration. So Google gave her a Doodle

Google has created a homepage doodle to mark the 107th anniversary of Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper's birth. A pioneering figure in the development of modern computing and programming theory, Hopper, born today in 1906, is credited with developing the programming language COBOL and working with many of the earliest computer …
Shaun Nichols, 09 Dec 2013

The gift of Grace: COBOL's odyssey from Vietnam to the Square Mile

Cobol is the language most associated with mainframes, especially the IBM System 360 whose 50th anniversary is being celebrated or at least commemorated this week. But when COBOL was first spawned in the mid-1950s, it wasn’t intended for programmers. It was aimed instead at “accountants and business managers” – basically a Stone …
Dominic Connor, 08 Apr 2014
The Register breaking news

Uni profs: Kids today could do with a bit of 'mind-crippling' COBOL

Want a guaranteed job in IT? Learn COBOL, even if it cripples you mentally – that’s the advice of university profs teaching tech. Ignore, for a second, the fact COBOL doesn’t feature in the top 20 of languages developers are using in anger today. Those in charge of setting university IT curricula reckon there’s no better …
Gavin Clarke, 11 Mar 2013
The Register breaking news

COBOL drinks from cloudy fountain of youth

One of computing's longest survivors is being hauled into the world of cloud computing, object-oriented programming, and virtual machines. Micro Focus today plans to deliver Visual COBOL R3, a development environment it said positions COBOL for the next 10 years by meeting the needs of those maintaining it. Despite the language …
Gavin Clarke, 20 Jan 2011
The Register breaking news

Fujitsu fluffs COBOL, Java on Azure clouds

Fujitsu customers who use its COBOL and Java application development and middleware software can finally run that code on the Fujitsu Azure clouds, significantly enhancing their appeal in Japan. Fujitsu launched its own private-label platform cloud based on Microsoft's Azure software stack back in June, after a delay of more …
The Register breaking news

Java won't curl up and die like Cobol, insists Oracle

With Java 8 still on its way in mid-2013, Oracle is already prepping for Java 9 and 10, and protesting that reports of a Cobolesque slide into irrelevance are much exaggerated. Java 9 and 10 will tackle big data, multi-language interoperability, cloud and mobile and ship in 2015 and 2017 respectively, Oracle said Wednesday. …
Gavin Clarke, 07 Mar 2012

Cobol cabal will take over THE WORLD Australia

The old advice was “Go west, young man”... but it seems the new one should be “Learn Cobol, youngster”. That at least is the implication of a report from Australia on the languages and environments that are heavily used. The Sydney-based Object Consulting has released a paper detailing those languages which will no longer be …
Tim Worstall, 20 Feb 2011
The Register breaking news

Cobol hits fifty

Cobol, the venerable computer language so beloved of Y2K-fearing businesses, has hit 50 years young today, having been invented on the 28th of May 1959 at a meeting of the Short Range Committee at the Pentagon. The news comes from Cobol specialists Micro Focus, which tells us that there are two hundred times as many Cobol …
Bill Ray, 28 May 2009
The Register breaking news

Undead COBOL celebrates (another) 50th birthday

COBOL is celebrating its 50th birthday. Or at least the name is. In May 1959, during a meeting at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., the US Department of Defense organized a committee charged with developing a "short range" approach to a common business computing language. And on September 18th of that year, the new Short Range …
Cade Metz, 18 Sep 2009
The Register breaking news

My lost Cobol years: Integrating legacy management

Nearly a quarter of a century ago, I went for a job interview with ICL. “What do you think of COBOL?” they asked. “It’s a dinosaur, won’t last, should be put out of its misery,” I remember saying. The two grey suits looked at each other and turned back to me. “We’re a COBOL shop,” said one, before the interview very swiftly …
Jon Collins, 24 Nov 2010
graph up

Who says COBOL doesn't get tweaks?

Some software development projects take a long time to complete, and others seem to take an eternity. So it is, it seems, for 64-bit support for IBM's COBOL compiler for its own AIX Unix variant running on Power-based servers. IBM has been shipping 64-bit Power-based servers since 1995 (starting with its proprietary AS/400 line …

Oracle's IP lawsuit foe: We'll fight SAP tooth and nail in Europe

Rimini Street, the fast-growing business software support specialist currently fighting Larry Ellison’s database giant in US courts, appears to have SAP in its sights in Europe. “Look out SAP,” Rimini Street chief executive Seth Ravin warned the giant in a recent interview with The Reg. “We are going to fight them tooth and …
Gavin Clarke, 25 Jun 2014
California flag

COBOL thwarts California's Governator

Inspite - or perhaps because - of its "difficult" birth, Common Business Oriented Language (COBOL) has become a survivor in the world of computing. That's caused problems when it comes to maintaining systems running the language. COBOL has now taken center stage in the rumbling controversy over the State of California's budget. …
Phil Manchester, 14 Aug 2008
grab_that_cash

Today's get-rich-quick scheme: Build your own bank

Here's a great get-rich-quick idea: Go build a bank. No, really, it's an industry that's ripe for the plucking at present. One way to think about banking is to divide it into four different types: transaction, savings, commercial and investment. Investment banking is all that City-style markets 'n' stuff; commercial is trying to …
Tim Worstall, 18 Jun 2014
cloud

Ruby, COBOL jump on Amazon cloud

Two different companies this week announced that they have created tools that allow for software written using two different application development environments - the relatively new Ruby on Rails and the relatively ancient (but still respected and used) COBOL - to be deployed on Amazon's Web Services compute and storage clouds …
The Register breaking news

Budget-slash fest shaves 10% off IT mercenaries' day rates

Cost-cutting at banks and a squeeze in the public sector have pushed IT contractor day rates in the UK down by £38 since 2010. Freelancing tech bods are therefore taking home £9,000 a year less than two years ago. But the recent RBS/Natwest banking crash offers a silver lining for developers: those skilled in the ancient ways of …
Anna Leach, 19 Sep 2012
Java logo

Java open-source frameworks 'pose risk' to biz - report

Open-source programming frameworks revolutionised Java development during the last decade, but not enough people know how to use them properly. That’s according to the CRASH Special Report by CAST that sampled 496 applications with 152 million lines of code and found most apps had been misconfigured. This increased the degree of …
Gavin Clarke, 31 Jan 2013
shutterstock_interview_sidey

Is the IT industry short on Cobolers? This could be your lucky day

Let's make one thing clear: your previous jobs are not the reason why you were hired. You were hired for having skills that bosses need. People are employed because they are needed to do things that must be done, not because they can do something that is merely desired. It’s not all bad news. The current Big Data hype means …
Dominic Connor, 01 May 2013
Sinclair ZX80

Your kids' chances of becoming programmers? ZERO

Almost overnight in the early 1980s, hordes of British kids embraced programming, as did many adults, delivering the most IT-literate workforce in the world. It was a big reason why the nosediving economy of the '70s and '80s didn’t crash and burn. Well, that or Thatcherism, you choose. Why BASIC? In the early 1970s and early …
Dominic Connor, 06 Nov 2013

On International Woman's Day we remember Grace Hopper

Once again some of the world is celebrating International Woman's Day (IWD), and it's time to reflect on great female role models. Ada Lovelace usually grabs most of the attention but I'd like to use IWD as an excuse to pay a tribute to a personal female hero of computing: US Rear Admiral Grace Hopper. Amazing Grace was in at …
Iain Thomson, 09 Mar 2013

Nuke plants to rely on PDP-11 code UNTIL 2050!

The venerable PDP-11 minicomputer is still spry to this day, powering GE nuclear power-plant robots - and will do so for another 37 years. That's right: PDP-11 assembler coders are hard to find, but the nuclear industry is planning on keeping the 16-bit machines ticking over until 2050 – long enough for a couple of generations …
The Register breaking news

COBOL Resartus

COBOL, the Common Business-Oriented Language, was one of the first signs (somewhat after LEO, the world’s first business computer in 1951) of the acceptance of computers as a routine business, as opposed to scientific or engineering, tool. The design of COBOL was strongly influenced by FlowMatic, developed through the 1950s by …
David Norfolk, 20 Mar 2006
School of Rock

Good god, where will the new storage experts come from?

As we enter the middle of the 2010 decade, new IT projects are increasingly being designed for the public cloud instead of local IT systems. Gartner figures that by the end of 2016 we'll be through the looking glass, with more money spent on "cloud" applications and services than traditional delivery mechanisms. Soon thereafter …
Trevor Pott, 19 Jun 2014
The Register breaking news

Google honors computing's first developer Ada Lovelace

Google has started the week with a Google Doodle offering a rather belated acknowledgement of the contribution of computing of Ada Lovelace, who wrote the first theoretical software algorithm for her friend Charles Babbage's Analytical Engine. Lovelace, daughter of mad, bad, and dangerous to know Lord Byron, was a close …
Iain Thomson, 10 Dec 2012
The Register breaking news

Working in the COBOL mine

The most common applications sector where the integration of long-standing legacy applications is a still vital requirement is, of course, the broad reaches of the financial services community. When such an application has established itself and proved not just its capabilities but its reliability and overall efficiency to the …
David Norfolk, 05 Jan 2007

Unisys doubles up midrange mainframes for fault tolerance

If you are "truly paranoid" about system uptime and are running the MCP operating system on a Burroughs-class, midrange-sized mainframe from Unisys, then the system maker has a new Libra 4200 that has your name on it. Last fall, Unisys refreshed its ClearPath mainframes with Intel's Xeon E5 processors, and is getting closer and …
The Register breaking news

Gorging Dell crams Canadian legacy-app rebore outfit into cakehole

Michael Dell is on a binge. Not drinking, but buying software companies. Dell has made its second acquisition of the week aimed at legacy applications running on proprietary mainframe and minicomputers from IBM by snapping up Make Technologies. This is Dell's third acquisition this week, and the fifth in the past month. With the …
Amdahl 470V/6 mainframe computer on the 3rd floor of the Computing Center Building on the University of Michigan, credit Jeff Ogden, original photographer unknown

Unisys re-ups $650m deal to look after US taxman's big iron

National tax collection agencies were among the first organizations in the world to use IBM, Sperry, Burroughs, and other mainframes, and despite all the grumbling and grousing over the high costs of these venerable box, they have invested a fortune in COBOL applications and it is not so easy to ditch the mainframe as it might …
Compuware logo

Compuware puffs up Outage Analyzer to fight performance anxiety

Compuware is taking another stab at making the data gathered from users of its Gomez performance monitoring network available on a freebie basis in a bid to get IT shops hooked on using the more sophisticated and definitely not free tools. The company has also upgraded its application performance monitoring tools for mainframes …
Ferrari F430. Photo © by Rudolf Stricker

IT salaries: Why you are a clapped-out Ferrari

As a tech careers writer I regularly receive noise about the UK IT “skills shortage", which makes as much sense as saying there’s a shortage of Ferraris. I know this because, according to Blighty's Office for National Statistics, the average weekly pre-tax pay in “computer programming, consultancy and related activities” in 2012 …
Dominic Connor, 12 Apr 2013
cable

Dell guns for IBM mainframes with Clerity gobble

Dell is hungry for more server revenues while building out a portfolio of software at the same time - and the acquisition of mainframe application rehosting company Clerity Solutions hits both targets with the same bullet. The PC and server maker has been in an acquisitive mood lately, snapping up security software and appliance …
cloud

Shoden Data CEO dies suddenly

Shoden Systems UK has lost its CEO: John Taffinder passed away at home on Monday, 25 April. He was a terrific guy and will be sorely missed. His IT life started with COBOL, writing code for British Steel in Port Talbot after graduating as an accountant. He then headed east across the Severn Bridge and climbed IT's career ladder …
Chris Mellor, 09 May 2011
channel

Micro Focus shares drop on update

Micro Focus shares lost a quarter of their value yesterday as the software company warned markets it was unlikely to hit sales or profit targets for the year. Interim results for the six months to 31 October 2010 showed profits and turnover were lower than expected, although the company has cut debt. Micro Focus shares fell from …
John Oates, 16 Feb 2011
The Playmobil bank set, complete with armed robber

How City IT is under attack from politicians, diesel bugs, HR

The stupidest thing I’ve ever said was “if it was a jet, the tower would have collapsed” on September 11th and I feel the same about RBS. As I pass it most days, part of me expects to see crowds outside, perhaps including the police and TV camera crews, because I can’t understand why it still functions. The Reg has covered in …
Dominic Connor, 27 Jun 2013

Think you're ready to make a big career bet? Read this first...

Disclaimer: Before taking any of my advice be aware that I once bet my career on OS/2 and that in all my careers articles my ambition is to help you avoid some of the mistakes I have made. The Politburo at The Reg wants me to stick my neck out and show some trends in this “future” thing that young people seem so keen on nowadays …
Dominic Connor, 31 May 2013
BMC Software logo

Big mainframe shops embiggen, says BMC survey

Like mainframe-makers IBM and Unisys, BMC Software gets a sizable portion of its $2.12bn in annual revenues – and presumably a disproportionately larger portion of its profits – from those venerable old card wallopers all gussied up as modern servers. This is why BMC has been conducting surveys over the past few years on the …
The Register breaking news

Blair condemns kids to life of everlasting Cobol

Posted 31 March 1998 The PM of the UK, Tony Blair, will spend a fortune educating young people to tackle the millennium bug, he said yesterday, with a task force ready by April next year. the door is always open here gov But that will give the estimated 20,000 bug busters only eight months to fix systems in the UK, meaning that …
The Register breaking news

Oracle scales back plans for Java 8

Oracle is moving to drop a major component from its upcoming Java 8 release, in an effort to get the flagging Java development process back on track. The component, known as Project Jigsaw, was an addition to the language that would have allowed Java developers to write and distribute programs as modules. It would also have made …
Neil McAllister, 19 Jul 2012

Nationwide to perform IT equivalent of 'replacing jet engine mid-flight'

Nationwide Building Society will become the first big UK banking firm to pull its core computing functions off mainframe computers and run them on SAP servers in the next few weeks. It's an operation that an insider described as like replacing the engine on a jet plane, mid-flight. The launch of the five-year project is slated …
Anna Leach, 02 Nov 2012

Codd almighty! How IBM cracked System R

Few teams have maintained such a fierce community spirit as the IBM pioneers of System R. In Silicon Valley in the early 1970s, this pioneering team proved that a relational database could actually work. It's a fascinating story, best known today because IBM failed to capitalise on its research. But it's also a timeless one, …
Andrew Orlowski, 20 Nov 2013
An original member of the System/360 family announced in 1964, the Model 50 was the most powerful unit in the medium price range.

Why won't you DIE? IBM's S/360 and its legacy at 50

IBM's System 360 mainframe, celebrating its 50th anniversary on Monday, was more than a just another computer. The S/360 changed IBM just as it changed computing and the technology industry. The digital computers that were to become known as mainframes were already being sold by companies during the 1950s and 1960s - so the S/ …
Gavin Clarke, 07 Apr 2014
The Register breaking news

Oracle gooses Studio compilers for Solaris, Linux

Having cranked Solaris Unix up to 11, software giant Oracle has now revved up a new companion set of compilers that work with the new operating system as well as the current Oracle Linux clone of Red Hat's Enterprise Linux. The Solaris Studio 12.3 C, C++, and Fortran compilers might bear the Solaris brand and they may have their …

Finance CIOs sweat as regulators prepare to probe aging mainframes

Could the watchful eyes of regulators soon come to rest on the old and often creaking IT systems that run the back offices of the UK’s leading banks? Among CIOs in the sector, there’s a palpable concern that they will. It’s no secret, after all, that most retail banks rely on decades-old technology for their core banking systems …
Brent Spiner signed photo saying 'Big Data'

EMC launches its cloudy Federation with Pivotal big data spinoff

Wall Street events can be pretty boring unless you like money and profits, but there was a moment of levity during EMC's financial analysts meeting that marked the birth of the Pivotal Initiative, the gathering up of big data and application framework assets from EMC and its virtualization minion, VMware. Joe Tucci, EMC's CEO …
management intelligence1

Software defined networking works up a head of steam

Software-defined networking (SDN) represents a revolutionary tide flowing through the fusty, slow-moving halls of data-centre networking, bringing speed and dynamism to network connectivity management. The idea that computer data network connectivity can be automatically set up to have its characteristics changed as needs change …
Chris Mellor, 11 Apr 2013
interview_suit_and_tie

So you want to be a contractor? Well, here's how it works

Back in the heady days of 1984, working on the development of Microsoft Unix (yes, that was a real product, AKA Xenix), we needed to write an Ethernet driver, but none of us really felt up to that. We needed to hire an expensive specialist. And so I met my first contractor, who turned up in a far better car than anyone else and …
Dominic Connor, 20 May 2013
The Register breaking news

Data-digesting cloud colossus touted by Fujitsu

Being online to serve your customers is not enough anymore. You have to spy on your customers and prospective clients, as well as anyone else you can get data on, and mash it all up to do big data analytics to drive more revenues and profits. It's a big job, and not everyone – OK, very few companies – have the skills to get it …
The Register breaking news

Open-source skills best hope for landing a good job

In the midst of a weakening global economy and rampant uncertainty as to when the recession will lift from North America and Western Europe, one thing is certain: open-source technology skills may be the best hope for landing a good job. As reported by The Wall Street Journal, open source claims five of the top 10 keywords in …
Matt Asay, 29 Nov 2011
The Register breaking news

Virtualization is the new hardware, says virt kingpin

Paul Maritz has been CEO at server virtualization juggernaut and cloud computing contender VMware for three years, and he has not forgotten – despite his long experience running divisions of Microsoft – that he got his first job at a mainframe company at the beginning of the minicomputer and PC revolutions. This was back in 1978 …