Tag Archives: COBOL

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 11 Elvis To The End

My legacy modernisation company had started well, but not without some sizeable bumps in the road. It was time for some consolidation… By mid 2015 the Proof Of Concept had drifted towards an unsatisfactory though predictable conclusion, but I was getting several leads from Microfocus. These were all COBOL users that had no idea how […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 10 Loans And Long Haul

After leaving a safe and well paid job the brave new world of Legacy Modernisation awaited. However, it did not all go according to plan… Things started slowly for the new company. I had a couple of minor engagements, including changes to the website of a wholesale fruit and vegetable merchant. Of course, I didn’t […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 9 Americans, Dutch And Rock And Roll

With seven graduates integrated into the IT department I was free to move on to other things, but first I had to persuade the new management team that “The Training Guy” could do more than just teach… As the graduate training programme came to an end in the autumn of 2008, and the new management regime […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 8 Pirates And Pupils

After eleven years as a freelancer I was given the option to take a permanent role at a place I knew well… In truth it was not a difficult decision. The COBOL gravy train was showing signs of being derailed, and IR35 was a threat to the contract profession everywhere. I went to the pub […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 7 Pool And Panto

New century, new start. Or in my case, not so new as I returned to familiar ground in the centre of Manchester… Agencies can be a rare and strange breed. Even when you decide that you want to switch contracts they rarely help you, its almost as if they are in denial. This appeared to […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 6 Birdies And Bugs

After three contracts travelling to Leeds, Chester and Oldham, it was a welcome change to head back to the easily commutable Manchester city centre… By Spring 1996 the fashion retailer had ditched Mantis. The 4GL that worked particularly well with the hierarchical database Supra was causing all sorts of problems. Performance, record locks, unfamiliarity; it […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 5 Fantasy Cricket And Cowboys

After years of familiarity it can be a big step out into the unknown swimming with the sharks, but I needn’t have worried. The big wide world of contracting was not exactly a showcase for excellence… I marketed myself as a senior analyst programmer, with skills in COBOL, CICS, VSAM, Supra, and if push came […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 4 Fashion And Freelancers

  Eleven years is a long time to be in the same job. Could I perform as part of a team? Would my coding skills be up to scratch? And what was the beer like in Manchester? The last few weeks of my time at the brewery should have been a period of handover, but […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 3 COBOL, Cricket and a Copper

A few years into my IT career I ditched Assembler for COBOL and hoped that I would never have to go back… COBOL was a revelation. It was horse drawn carriage to motor car, Betamax to VHS, black and white to colour. After the relatively slow and long-winded Assembler, I could churn out COBOL code […]

The History Of (My) Coding – Part 2 The Punk Programmer

My forty year career in IT blossomed in the late 1970s as I learned a valuable lesson about continuous stationery and undertook my first legacy modernisation project… The seventies were drawing to a close and technology was moving at pace. Actually, if you compare it to technological developments today it wasn’t really moving that quickly. […]