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Essay on Cobol

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The COBOL programming language is typically used in large scale databases in banks and insurance companies. Today, COBOL is rarely used to write new software applications. It has been replaced by the C/C++ programming language, but up until the 80’s all business software was written using COBOL. This includes but not exclusively accounting, payroll, and large bank applications. COBOL is still used today due to the high cost in upgrading software, and recent studies show that as many as twelve million COBOL applications are still used today. Also, a good majority of these are proprietary and would be extremely hard to redo in a more current language. So it is obvious that COBOL programs are everywhere, and more importantly our…show more content…
Even though better languages have been designed, all the business can’t just discard the legacy code in COBOL, which will cause extra cost and disruption. Over the years, companies have spent billions in developing their computer systems and there is no way they can afford to dump these and start again from scratch. The amount of investment in networking equipment is also the reason I don’t see us switching to IPv6 in the near future. Even though it would solve the problem of running out of IP addresses, the amount of money phone companies and business would have to invest to start from scratch would be too significant to justify the investment. Also, since COBOL is so well put structured, programmers can easily learn a modern language with some brief training. Today, it is estimated that some 70% of all commercial computer applications are written in COBOL. Another reason that COBOL is still widely used is that it can run on virtually any platform. It can run on UNIX, Windows, or even various types of desktop computers. It has been used in developing business applications for around the last 40 years, so it has proven reliability and stability. Because a majority of this software was written when processors weren’t as powerful and memory was limited, good discipline was exercised when programming these applications. It has been estimated that the industry has invested over $5 trillion
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