More than half a century after its development, COBOL is still portable, scalable, debugged, easy to learn, and also is the preferred language for business applications of the vast majority of the Fortune Global 100, or at least, they say in Micro Focus.
COBOL is the real workhorse of programming languages for business thanks to its complex arithmetic and its ability to process large volumes of data.
Following this line, the company Micro Focus says that, far from being dead, COBOL is more alive than ever and dominates the world of language development of business applications. And justified 8 reasons:
1 – COBOL is easy
Learning COBOL is not learning a completely new language in English! It consists of structural components in English – as verbs, clauses, and sentences.
Its ease of reading allows understanding what the program is doing without having to learn a whole new syntax.
2 – You can run anywhere
COBOL has been ported to virtually all hardware platforms. Programs are written in this language, based on the axiom: “write once, run anywhere”, allowing companies to reuse COBOL applications that were written decades in new platforms like .NET or JVM.
The language itself is portable, with data types and structures that allow developers to write applications that can be ported to new platforms with minimal or no change. COBOL has been able to adapt to changes: every new enterprise platform that emerges has deployed COBOL applications.
3 – It will work tomorrow like today
Companies already using COBOL are likely to continue using COBOL rather than replace it. Replacing COBOL would be expensive – due to its huge scale, slow and risky, besides being completely unnecessary. The “2000 effect” showed that COBOL applications are cheaper to fix and adjust than the most recent applications written in languages.
4 – Place the numbers correctly
Not surprisingly, the financial sector is based on the COBOL systems: banking, insurance, fund management, pension systems, payroll, and credit card, all depend on COBOL. Their numerical processing functions make it the perfect choice for applications where fractional rounding error minimum can have enormous consequences.
It provides an arithmetic precision of 31 digits and is, therefore, the preferred financial application.
5 – You can use your favorite IDE
No need to worry about learning a new set of tools.
COBOL applications can be developed using Visual Studio or Eclipse. These IDEs provide great productivity aids such as IntelliSense and a user interface and very effective design tools so that the coding in COBOL is not a complex task.
6 – You can get to your data quickly
COBOL can not only process data from a variety of sources, including almost any management system relational database (RDBMS) but also provides direct support for data files COBOL indexed file systems use data structures that maintain their “B- tree “internal, which provides quick access to data even when data warehouses running on terabytes.
7 – Do not need to spend hours with documentation
COBOL is self-documenting. COBOL code readability and its rigid hierarchical structure make it easy to read and maintain COBOL. The COBOL language does not require the same level of review as others, maintaining someone else’s code COBOL is a simple task.
8 – Integrates with all
The COBOL systems have retained the value of integrándole business with new technologies. COBOL programs can be called from most other programming languages, can be deployed on Java application servers, provide backend logic service-oriented architecture (SOA) can read and write XML directly, and work with Unicode strings.
With its new capabilities, can enhance existing COBOL applications on the web, on mobile, and cloud.