COBOL
By Rhonda Wright
COBOL
Common Business Oriented
Language
Outline of Presentation
History
 Strengths and Weaknesses
 Facts
 Evaluation

History of COBOL
 Developed
by the CODASYL
Committee
 Business applications
 Coding Forms
COBOL Design


Punched onto punch
cards
loaded into the
computer using punch
card reader
Strengths of COBOL

COBOL is in wide use

English-like and self-documenting

promotes code writing discipline

inherently modular

machine independent

standardized

regularly updated.
Weaknesses of COBOL

wordy

limited

hard to learn

slow
COBOL Facts

75% of the world's business data is in COBOL. Gartner Group
There are between 180 billion and 200 billion
lines of COBOL code in use worldwide. - Gartner
Group

15% of all new applications (5 billion lines)
through 2005 will be in COBOL. - Gartner Group


CICS transaction volume (such as COBOL-based
ATM transactions) grew from 20 billion per day
in 1998 to 30 billion per day in 2002. - The
Cobol Report
Facts continued



Replacement costs for COBOL systems, estimated at $25
per line, are in the hundreds of billions of dollars. - Tactical
Strategy Group
There are 90,000 COBOL programmers in North America
in 2002. Over the next four years there will be a 13%
decrease in their number due to retirement and death. Gartner Group
There are at least 10,000 "Free Agent" COBOL
programmers in the US today. - The Senior Staff
Facts Continued



The most highly paid programmers in the next ten years
are going to be COBOL programmers. - GIGA Group
Any programmer with above average skills in COBOL can
quickly learn the basics of Web Enabling, at home, through
self-training. - Bill Lockhart, Legacy Reservist
COBOL programmers could be the key to new IT. The
legions of COBOL programmers who helped organizations
get legacy applications ready for Y2K could find new work
bringing those applications into the Internet age. - IEEE
Computer, April 2000
COBOL Evaluation
Good for a first programming language
 Big impact on other languages

–
–
–
widely used today
simple and understandable
dominant programming language in the
business computing domain
References
Www.csis.ul.ie/COBOL/Course/COBOLIntro.htm
http://www.cobolwebler.com/cobolfacts.htm
Cobol in an Open Source Future
http://cobolreport.com/columnists/tw/part2.asp
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COBOL - Murray State University