Software Development

The resurgence of COBOL: Podcast with Arunn Ramadoss of Micro Focus

On February 20th, I wrote about the resurgence of COBOL as a necessary skill set for a younger generation due to Baby Boomers reaching retirement age. On March 4th, I had the pleasure of speaking with Arunn Ramadoss of Micro Focus about its Action Program.

Podcast

On February 20th, I wrote about the resurgence of COBOL as a necessary skill set for a younger generation due to Baby Boomers reaching retirement age. On March 4th, I had the pleasure of speaking with Arunn Ramadoss of Micro Focus about its Action Program. The Action Program provides colleges with the tools needed to teach COBOL. Micro Focus also reaches out to professors and provides additional training including seminars. They are currently reaching out to over 50 universities in several countries.

Listen to this podcast as Arunn gives us information about the Micro Focus efforts, as well as some insight to the COBOL job market. Find additional information at the Micro Focus COBOL portal and links pages.

8 comments
anon
anon

I think COBOL is dead I agree with this post that a guy called Peter posted up on http://www.computerweekly.com/blogs/it-networks-and-communications-blog/2008/04/cobol-programmers-back-in-dema.html I love these misconceptions about COBOL. COBOL was a great language and still is but... I was a fairly recent graduate, and guess what I got my first job as a COBOL developer. I have been a COBOL developer for three years since graduating. I can truly say I wish I stayed away from COBOL and so should all you recent graduates. It really doesn???t matter whether or not there are 70 billion lines of COBOL and all that other stuff; if you can???t get a job in this area (trust me I???ve been looking). All you have to do is type COBOL in a job search (and there we have it ??? the last time I got 100 hits) ??? ???COBOL IS DEAD??? if you want to get a job. When you narrow down your search to say London and you only get about 12 hits ??? so if you want to work as a software developer stay away from COBOL. It really doesn???t matter if some developer says ???COBOL is not dead, I???ve recently got a job in COBOL???. These people probably been programming in COBOL for a life time (that???s like 25 years) so you are competing with these guys for those handful of jobs. It really doesn???t matter if one says ???there will be plenty of jobs when these old people retire and a company will give you loads of money if you have COBOL experience???. They may give people with COBOL skills loads of money to fix a bug but how often do these bugs cause faults (remember if its working don???t touch it). So you maybe sitting unemployed for years before anything goes wrong, waiting for your one off big contract payment (sounds like too much of a risky investment). Anyway I???ve been looking for work out their and finding it very hard (almost impossible) to find a job. I am a First Class graduate and have a Mastersand even with these academics three years of doing COBOL has crippled my chances. I wish I had not done COBOL and stayed with the skills (what you should be learning at university) that have jobs. I have got 3 years COBOL and someone has 3 years of Java or C or C# etc.. so I am out of the competition when looking for jobs. Don???t listen to those that say it don???t matter what the language is (because it does), all you have to do is look at the job specs (they generally mention the programming language because it really does matter). I am now hoping to build on those skills at university and then will keep trying to apply for jobs. I am also hoping to do some courses to refresh my knowledge in areas I have neglected over the last three years (which from my experience you don???t get from COBOL and my opinion is this language should not be taught at university). Certainly its IT and you have too keep up with recently skills set (that???s RECENT!! skills set), but why get into the position I am in and many (I hope not too many) recent graduates may be in. I know this is very negative and may not read well, but COBOL has made it very difficult for me to forward my career and I really don???t want this to happen to any other graduate. Basically ???COBOL is truly dead??? if you look at it from the perspective of your career. Go out there, do the research and see the truth for yourself !!

dawgit
dawgit

This guy is good, He doesn't sound like a typical software evangelist, he actually makes sense. Good one Tigger. (I think you might have to study up on COBOL, it seems you've got yourself started on a new career.) -d

Tig2
Tig2

The discussion around the resurgence of COBOL as a business need generated the interest of MicroFocus, an industry leader in the COBOL space. I had an opportunity to speak with Arunn Ramadoss about the effort MicroFocus is making to educate the next generation.

Tig2
Tig2

Which is one of the things that attracted me to this topic. I agree- Arunn was a real pleasure to interview. He certainly could speak well to the subject matter and had very current statistical information. When I did the original article, the best information was a 10 year old Gartner study.

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

When I was in school, I had an instructor who predicted that COBOL would be around for much longer than any of us. It's stable, verbose, easy to read, easy to maintain, and as a language, bulletproof. Speaking as a maintenance coder, I also like the fact that it's almost impossible for some hotshot to jump in and do clever, but unreadable stupid code tricks.

dawgit
dawgit

Mystory Systems and all that. There really is no explaination for the lack of info on, or about, COBOL. The only reason I can imangine is that the Banking an Finance Industry wants to keep lid on it. For their own security. -d

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

"Nothing is foolproof as fools are so damned ingenious"

john.brasher
john.brasher

In my experience none of the people who did unreadable stupid code were clever :-)

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