Arthur Griffith COBOL For Dummies?

ISBN 13: 9780764502989

COBOL For Dummies?

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9780764502989: COBOL For Dummies?

COBOL—the language of business data processing -- has been used for accounting systems, inventory control, database maintenance, payroll systems, and many other applications. With the help of COBOL For Dummies, you'll read and understand existing COBOL programs as well as write programs of your own. This book contains everything you need to know to store and retrieve data in files, perform calculations necessary for business operations, and organize and format data for presentation on paper and on the computer screen.

Inside, find helpful advice on how to

  • Choose the right solutions for the year 2000 problem
  • Use simple, step-by-step processes for defining different types of file organizations and accesses
  • Create PICTURE clauses to store and format data in ways that make the most sense for your applications
  • Explore the data tables that you can build inside a COBOL program to model real-world events and situations
  • Set up sorting procedures capable of handling millions of records

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Review:

It's a rare Dummies book that manages to appeal to experienced practitioners as well as novices. COBOL for Dummies pulls it off, explaining the intricacies of COBOL to new programmers as engagingly as it provides hints and shortcuts to seasoned COBOL programmers.

Griffith opens with exactly what beginners need: an overview of the structure of COBOL programs. This elementary information, which should be familiar to more experienced programmers, serves as the basis for deeper coverage in subsequent chapters. One section of the book explains the DATA DIVISION and all the details of how COBOL represents information in memory. Another portion explores the PROCEDURE DIVISION, telling readers how to make COBOL actually do things with data. All the important verbs--and some arcane but useful ones---are highlighted.

This book really shines in its explanation of input and output--two commonplace routines that aren't easy to do efficiently with COBOL. Griffith, an experienced COBOL contractor, has come up with good input, output, and sorting solutions that you can paste into your own programs.

The CD-ROM accompanying this book contains, among many other things, Fujitsu COBOL development tools, which were selling for $2,500 just a few months ago. Even without the text, this book represents a savings of 98.8 percent on the excellent Fujitsu software--a blue-light special of legendary proportions. If you're doing any work with COBOL, you need this book.

About the Author:

Arthur Griffith was first exposed to COBOL in 1975. Although he has worked in a number of programming languages over the years, a COBOL project still comes up from time to time. In the early 1980s, he became a compiler writer and was involved in the implementation of several computer language compilers and interpreters. This led to the implementation of a COBOL compiler on a mini-computer and the creation of a special SQL-like preprocessor to extend COBOL to database accesses. pl?idgbook:0-7645-3084-4:book-idg::uidg323">Java Master Reference.

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Griffith, Arthur
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