Best way to break into COBOL field. 
Author Message
 Best way to break into COBOL field.

Hello all, I do some contract/{*filter*} work, mostly in C++, C and
Perl.  I have been thinking lately that I should be adding COBOL to my
skills if only to cash in this whole Y2K thing (yes my motives are
crass, whatsittoya?).  Any ideas about the best courses to take to get
some kind of "certified COBOL programmer" status so I can present myself
as somebody with credentials.  I'm thinking of something like the MSCE
program but for COBOL.  Also, what is the best COBOL implementation that
is available, prefereable free for Linux?  THANX

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Wed, 20 Sep 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 Best way to break into COBOL field.

Quote:

> Hello all, I do some contract/{*filter*} work, mostly in C++, C and
> Perl.  I have been thinking lately that I should be adding COBOL to my
> skills if only to cash in this whole Y2K thing (yes my motives are
> crass, whatsittoya?).  Any ideas about the best courses to take to get
> some kind of "certified COBOL programmer" status so I can present myself
> as somebody with credentials.  I'm thinking of something like the MSCE

Just pick up 'COBOL for dummies', if you can cope with C, you will
have no problem with COBOL if you just:

        Forget everything you know about pointers, they exist, but
        COBOL types catagorize their use as 'Black Magic'...

        Forget meaningful variable names, all variables must be prefixed
        by 'WS-' so maintenance programmers don't get confused.

        Forget functions, you get this thing called a paragraph, but you
        don't get to pass it parameters.  Also, to keep the other
        COBOL programmers happy, you MUST prefix the paragraph name with
        a number that is totally unrelated to your code.  This helps you
        organize your deck of punch cards in case you drop it or need to
        find your way in your compile listing hardcopy....

        COBOL now has functions, but they also fall into that 'Black Magic'
        area.  I am reminded of the statement by Heinlein(?), Smick(?),
        'Any suffuciently advanced tech appears as magic'.

        You can "preform" paragraphs, but the prefered method is to "goto"
        them and the have them return to a fixed place...unless you
        want to do a sequence of paragraphs (and give your optimizer fits)
        in which case you "preform 12345678-x thru 12345678-x-exit", and
        then inside the paragraph 12345678-x you "goto" the "12345678-x-exit"
        when you want to leave.

        Forget using the right datatype for the job, everything should be
        done in text numerics or binary coded decimal (know as display and
        packed-decimal respectively).  Perhaps this might have made sense
        once, but with the state of optimizing compiliers all that conversion
        to packed, computation, reconversion to ints or floats goes away
        and is done nicely.  But try not to upset the maintenance programmers,
        binary data types fall into the same 'black magic' catagory as
pointers.

Quote:
> program but for COBOL.  Also, what is the best COBOL implementation that
> is available, prefereable free for Linux?  THANX

I think gnu has a COBOL, not sure, but there is one for Linux that
is free, check their site for directions.

        Good Luck

The above is intended as humor...please don't get all offended.



Fri, 22 Sep 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 Best way to break into COBOL field.

Quote:


>         Forget meaningful variable names, all variables must be prefixed
>         by 'WS-' so maintenance programmers don't get confused.

This reminds me of the horrors of 6 character fortran variable names.

Quote:

>         Forget functions, you get this thing called a paragraph, but you
>         don't get to pass it parameters.  Also, to keep the other
>         COBOL programmers happy, you MUST prefix the paragraph name with
>         a number that is totally unrelated to your code.  This helps you
>         organize your deck of punch cards in case you drop it or need to

But what if I blow a vacuum tube...

Quote:
>         You can "preform" paragraphs, but the prefered method is to "goto"
>         them and the have them return to a fixed place...unless you
>         want to do a sequence of paragraphs (and give your optimizer fits)
>         in which case you "preform 12345678-x thru 12345678-x-exit", and
>         then inside the paragraph 12345678-x you "goto" the

And this reminds me of the horrors of basic.  This stuff better pay
well, that's all I've got to say ;)


Sun, 24 Sep 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 Best way to break into COBOL field.

On Mon, 06 Apr 1998 14:07:22 -0400, Joe Zitzelberger

Quote:
>       Also, to keep the other
>    COBOL programmers happy, you MUST prefix the paragraph name with
>    a number that is totally unrelated to your code.  This helps you
>    organize your deck of punch cards in case you drop it or need to
>    find your way in your compile listing hardcopy....

I thought that's what the line numbers in columns 73-80 were for! :)

Raymond F. Greenberg



Tue, 26 Sep 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 
 [ 4 post ] 

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