14 thoughts on “Do You Know COBOL?

  1. What were the lessons we should have learned from Y2K?

    The husband of my closest friend here knows COBOL. He is 74 years old, and the place where he works won’t let him retire, since he is the only one in the area who can work with their older computer systems.

    • The Y2K bug was a computer flaw, or bug, that may have caused problems when dealing with dates beyond December 31, 1999. Years were designated with 2 digits. So there was a scramble for COBOL programmers to fix systems. Lessons 1.) Upgrade and migrate old mainframe systems to client-server systems OR 2.) train younger employees in COBOL. Many companies did neither.

  2. And another question is, why do you have to know COBOL to process unemployment claims? Are they working with half century year old computers?

    The place where my friend’s husband works is in the process of transitioning to all modern computer systems. But until the transition is complete they need him to continue working.

    • You don’t need to know programming but you do have to develop a comfort level working with old mainframe interfaces (think old MS-DOS). It’s just different and nowadays you have workers who know nothing except punching icons on a phone. Yes, a lot of businesses still operate on half century old systems.

      • Yes, my friend’ husband‘s business still operates part of their system on old mainframes.

        It’s funny with my friend’s husband, he can do the COBOL and MS-DOS, try to get him to work a smart phone or set up Alexa, his wife does that.

      • Unfortunately, I don’t think this couple is following social distancing guidelines. They had planned to drive down to Central Florida to visit friends that they go on cruises with. Instead the friends drove up to here see them. They are spending a four-day weekend together at my friend’s house. Her house is about 1500 ft.². That does not seem to me like a good idea. Of the four people, three are in their 70s and one is in his 80s. Two have had cancer and chemotherapy within the last couple years. One has diabetes, and the 85-year-old has COPD. They invited me and my dog over for a play date. I declined.

      • The risk is if one is an asymptomatic carrier and all participants are in a high risk group. At this point in time in the state of Florida I would stay home with my dog too (if I had one).

  3. He does love to go out in the backyard, but now I only allow him in the pool screened in enclosure. The previous owners declawed him so he cannot defend himself.

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