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Cobol: a historic past, a vital future?

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One of the strangest stories in the software world centers around the programming language Cobol. Academics have reviled it for decades; its demise has been predicted since the 1960s; industry gurus have suggested that programmers who know only Cobol are committing career suicide. You would think, based on all this bad press, that Cobol was not long for this software world. Yet the giant lumbers on. In poll after poll, it is either the most-used or the second-most-used programming language in industry. In fact, in one industry poll, each year those contacted predict that Cobol's use will diminish by the next poll, and each year the findings are that Cobol is the only language whose use has actually increased. The devil refuses to die. What's with Cobol? I give my Loyal Opposition answer to that question and then give some input on the subject from a Cobol expert who is tracking Cobol's future directions

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IEEE Software  (Volume:16 ,  Issue: 4 )