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10 dying IT skills (No matter how good you are with these skills, you won't get a job today)
Tech Republic ^ | June 28,2009 | Linda Leung

Posted on 07/21/2009 5:31:52 PM PDT by SeekAndFind

One of the challenges of working in the IT field is staying on top of emerging technologies - while letting go of those that are becoming obsolete. This Global Knowledge article lists 10 areas that are fading into obscurity.

There are some things in life, like good manners, that never go out of style. And there are other things, like clothing styles, that fall in and out of fashion. But when an IT skill falls out of favor, it rarely ever comes back. Here’s our list of 10 dying IT skills. If any of these skills is your main expertise, perhaps it’s time to think about updating your skill set.

1: Asynchronous Transfer Mode

ATM was popular in the late 90s, particularly among carriers, as the answer to overworked frame relay for wide-area networking. It was considered more scalable than frame relay and offered inherent QoS support. It was also marketed as a LAN platform, but that was its weakness. According to Wikipedia, ATM failed to gain wide acceptance in the LAN where IP makes more sense for unifying voice and data on the network. Wikipedia notes that ATM will continue to be deployed by carriers that have committed to existing ATM deployments, but the technology is increasingly challenged by speed and traffic shaping requirements of converged voice and data networks. A growing number of carriers are now using Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS), which integrates the label-switching capabilities of ATM with the packet orientation of IP. IT skills researcher Foote Partners listed ATM in its IT Skills and Certification Pay Index as a non-certified IT skill that has decreased in value in the last six month of 2008.

2: Novell NetWare

Novell’s network operating system was the de facto standard for LANs in the 1990s, running on more than 70% of enterprise networks. But Novell failed to compete with the marketing might of Microsoft. Novell tried to put up a good fight by acquiring WordPerfect to compete with Windows Office, but that move failed to ignite the market, and Novell eventually sold WordPerfect to Corel in 1996. Novell certifications, such as Certified Novell Engineer, Master Certified Novell Engineer, Certified Novell Certified Directory Engineer, and Novell Administrator, were once hot in the industry. But now, they are featured in Foote Partners’ list of skills that decreased in value in 2008. Hiring managers want Windows Server and Linux skills instead.

3: Visual J++

Skills pay for Microsoft’s version of Java declined 37.5% last year, according to the Foote Partners’ study. The life of J++, which is available with Microsoft Visual Studio 6.0, was not a smooth one. Although Sun Microsystems licensed Java to Microsoft to develop J++, Microsoft failed to implement some features of the official Java standard while implementing other extensions of its own. Sun sued Microsoft for licensing violations in a legal wrangle that lasted three years. Microsoft eventually replaced J++ with Microsoft .NET.

4: Wireless Application Protocol

Yes, people were able to browse the Internet in the late 90s before Apple’s iPhone. Web site operators would rewrite their content to the WAP’s Wireless Markup Language, enabling users to access Web services such as email, stock results and news headlines using their cell phones and PDAs. WAP was not well received at the beginning because WAP sites were slow and lacked the richness of the Web. WAP has also seen different levels of uptake worldwide because of the different wireless regulations and standards around the world. WAP has since evolved and is a feature of Multimedia Messaging Service, but there is now a new generation of competing mobile Web browsers, including Opera Mobile and the iPhone’s Safari browser.

5: ColdFusion

ColdFusion users rave that this Web programming language is easy to use and quick to jump into, but as many other independent software tools have experienced, it’s hard to compete with products backed by expensive marketing campaigns from Microsoft and others. The language was originally released in 1995 by Allaire, which was acquired by Macromedia (which itself was purchased by Adobe). Today, it is superseded by Microsoft .NET, Java, PHP, and the language of the moment: open source Ruby on Rails. A quick search of the Indeed.com job aggregator site returned 11,045 jobs seeking PHP skills, compared to 2,027 CF jobs. Even Ruby on Rails, which is a much newer technology - and which received a major boost when Apple packaged it with OS X v10.5 in 2007 — returned 1,550 jobs openings on Indeed.com.

6: RAD/extreme programming

Back in the late 90s and early 2000s, the rapid application development and extreme programming development philosophies resulted in quicker and more flexible programming that embraced the ever-changing needs of customers during the development process. In XP, developers adapted to changing requirements at any point during the project life rather than attempting to define all requirements at the beginning. In RAD, developers embraced interactive use of structured techniques and prototyping to define users’ requirements. The result was accelerated software development. Although the skills were consistently the highest paying in Foote Partners survey since 1999, they began to lose ground in 2003 due to the proliferation of offshore outsourcing of applica­tions development.

7: Siebel

Siebel is one skill that makes a recurring appearance in the Foote Partners’ list of skills that have lost their luster. Siebel was synonymous with customer relationship management in the late 90s and early 2000s, and the company dominated the market with a 45% share in 2002. Founded by Thomas Siebel, a former Oracle executive with no love lost for his past employer, Siebel competed aggressively with Oracle until 2006 when it was ultimately acquired by the database giant. Siebel’s complex and expensive CRM software required experts to install and manage. That model lost out to the new breed of software-as-a-service (SaaS) packages from companies such as Salesforce.com, which deliver comparable software over the Web. According to the ITJobsWatch.com, Siebel experts command an average salary of GBP52,684 ($78,564), but that’s a slide from GBP55,122 a year ago. Siebel is ranked 319 in the job research site’s list of jobs in demand, compared to 310 in 2008.

8: SNA

The introduction of IP and other Internet networking technologies into enterprises in the 1990s signaled the demise of IBM’s proprietary Systems Network Architecture. According to Wikipedia, the protocol is still used extensively in banks and other financial transaction networks and so SNA skills continue to appear in job ads. But permanent positions seeking SNA skills are few and far between. ITJobsWatch.com noted that there were three opening for permanent jobs between February and April, compared to 43 during the same period last year. Meanwhile, companies such as HP offer consultants with experience in SNA and other legacy skills, such as OpenVMS and Tru64 UNIX for short-term assignments.

9: HTML

We’re not suggesting the Internet is dead, but with the proliferation of easy-to-use WYSIWYG HTML editors enabling non-techies to set up blogs and Web pages, Web site development is no longer a black art. Sure, there’s still a need for professional Web developers, but a good grasp of HTML isn’t the only skill required of a Web developer. Professional developers often have expertise in Java, AJAX, C++, and .NET, among other programming languages. HTML as a skill lost more than 40% of its value between 2001 and 2003, according to Foote Partners.

10: COBOL

Is it dead or alive? This 40-year-old programming language often appears in lists of dying IT skills. But it also appears in as many articles about organizations with legacy applications written in COBOL that are having a hard time finding workers with COBOL skills. IBM cites statistics that 70% of the world’s business data is still being processed by COBOL applications. But how many of these applications will remain in COBOL for the long term? Even IBM is pushing its customers to “build bridges” and use service-oriented architecture to “transform legacy applications and make them part of a fast and flexible IT architecture.” About the author

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Linda Leung is a senior IT journalist with 20 years’ experience editing and writing news and features for online and print. She has extensive experience creating and launching news Web sites, including most recently, independent communities for customers of Cisco Systems and Microsoft.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events; Technical
KEYWORDS: it; skills
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1 posted on 07/21/2009 5:31:52 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: ShadowAce

ping


2 posted on 07/21/2009 5:32:25 PM PDT by bamahead (Few men desire liberty; most men wish only for a just master. -- Sallust)
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To: SeekAndFind

Hah, how many dead lists has COBOL been on?


3 posted on 07/21/2009 5:33:00 PM PDT by kenth
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To: SeekAndFind

So does that mean I have to shelf my vacuum tube design and Fortran 4 skills as well ...


4 posted on 07/21/2009 5:33:42 PM PDT by clamper1797 (An Kenyan KGB agent could not do a better job as president)
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To: SeekAndFind
Job security
5 posted on 07/21/2009 5:33:48 PM PDT by South40 (Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance. ~Hussein Obama, Cairo, Egypt, June 4, 2009)
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To: SeekAndFind

COBOL is still in demand. It’s the best language for large computers because you can teach anyone to use it


6 posted on 07/21/2009 5:35:02 PM PDT by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: clamper1797

This same publication had the following list of obsolete IT skills in 2007 :

1. Cobol
2. Nonrelational DBMS
3. Non-IP networks
4. cc:Mail
5. ColdFusion
6. C programming
7. PowerBuilder
8. Certified NetWare Engineers
9. PC network administrators
10. OS/2


7 posted on 07/21/2009 5:35:29 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

11) Zilog Z80 assembler.


8 posted on 07/21/2009 5:35:37 PM PDT by SpaceBar
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To: SeekAndFind

Pretty much agree with everything except the last one. the business systems are so complex and so difficult to migrate off COBOL will be around a long time.


9 posted on 07/21/2009 5:36:17 PM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
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To: clamper1797

Tubes live!


10 posted on 07/21/2009 5:36:26 PM PDT by loungitude (The truth hurts.)
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To: kenth

The smart engineer will always be on top of whatever technology is needed for the job at hand. It always changes, after 40 years, that’s about all I can say about IT.


11 posted on 07/21/2009 5:36:33 PM PDT by Tarpon
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To: SpaceBar

Geesh, would you like my 6502 breadboard?

hh


12 posted on 07/21/2009 5:37:09 PM PDT by hoosier hick (Note to RINOs: We need a choice, not an echo....Barry Goldwater)
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To: SpaceBar

6502 assembler with that screaming 1 MHz clock.


13 posted on 07/21/2009 5:38:01 PM PDT by dartuser ("If you torture the data long enough, it will confess, even to crimes it did not commit")
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To: SeekAndFind
6: RAD/extreme programming

Replaced by the new wave SCRUM.

14 posted on 07/21/2009 5:38:56 PM PDT by Glenn (Free Venezuela!)
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To: SeekAndFind
9: HTML

We’re not suggesting the Internet is dead, but with the proliferation of easy-to-use WYSIWYG HTML editors enabling non-techies to set up blogs and Web pages, Web site development is no longer a black art. Sure, there’s still a need for professional Web developers, but a good grasp of HTML isn’t the only skill required of a Web developer. Professional developers often have expertise in Java, AJAX, C++, and .NET, among other programming languages. HTML as a skill lost more than 40% of its value between 2001 and 2003, according to Foote Partners.

Yes web development is a comprehensive affair that requires a diverse skill-set, but one can't be a serious developer without being proficient with HTML.

15 posted on 07/21/2009 5:41:09 PM PDT by AAABEST (And the light shineth in darkness: and the darkness did not comprehend it)
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To: Tarpon
http://www.cheezhead.com/2009/07/15/jc-top-tech-skills-in-demand/

Here are the top skills and positions in demand:

* Security - Technology professionals with security skills continue to have bright prospects. Employers frequently look for candidates who’ve earned the CISSP, or Certified Information Systems Security Professional. Candidates for the CISSP must have at least five years of experience in information security.

* Virtualization - Virtualization allows data centers to run multiple servers on a single physical machine, thus reducing hardware and operating costs as well as reducing energy consumption. VMware, the leading vendor in virtualization technology, offers the most highly sought certification – the VCP, or VMware certified Professional.

* Java/J2EE - Sun Microsystem’s Java and its enterprise edition, J2EE, are the industry standards for developing online applications. By earning Sun’s Certified Java Programmer, or SCJP, title, programmers demonstrate their proficiency in the Java programming language.

* SAP - SAP bills itself as the world’s largest business software company providing enterprise software to clients in every major industry and every major market. Tech professionals who want to work with SAP can take advantage of a variety of programs, but to many hiring managers, hands-on experience is more valuable than certification. However, having the right credentials can make even experienced candidates stand out.

* .NET - Microsoft has a variety of levels of certification, but the most bang-for-the-buck probably comes from the Microsoft Certified Professional Developer, or MCPD, which allows professionals to show their efficiency with Microsoft Visual Studio and the Microsoft .NET Framework. It requires at least two years of relevant experience.

* Database Administrators/Administration - Because a number of database solutions are on the market, hiring managers focus on the certifications that apply to their particular implementation. IBM DB2, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL and Oracle Database are among the most popular, and each offers companion certifications.

* Oracle - Focused on its database packages, the Oracle Certified Professional, or OCP, is probably the most popular of the company’s certifications. But it’s only one of many offered by the JD Edwards, Siebel, BEA Systems and other stand alone brands owned by Oracle offer certifications designed to show mastery of their products. Sun Microsystems will soon join that group.

* Project Manager/Management - The Project Management Institute offers certifications for professionals with different levels of experience. Its Project Management Professional, or PMP, remains the gold standard for project management certification.

* Sharepoint - Microsoft’s server-based collaboration tools allow companies to share information through an environment that streamlines administration and growth. Earning the Microsoft Certified Technical Specialist, or MCTS, demonstrates a candidate’s knowledge of implementing, extending and troubleshooting Sharepoint’s components.
16 posted on 07/21/2009 5:41:24 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: clamper1797

Gee, how about 360 assembler and JCL? I guess I am finished.


17 posted on 07/21/2009 5:41:25 PM PDT by bytesmith
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To: kenth

There’s the old joke about the programmer who dies and is placed in cryogenic storage. One day he’s reanimated and brought back to life. Looking at the people surrounding him he asks, “What year is this?” One of the people responds “It’s 2999. You live in the United States of North America. There is world peace, no poverty, no hunger, everyone is prosperous and live in harmony.” “My God!” he says, “It’s perfect. But how am I going to live and support myself.” One of the people says, “The ancient records say that you were a ‘programmer’? Do you by chance know COBOL...?”


18 posted on 07/21/2009 5:41:32 PM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: clamper1797
So does that mean I have to shelf my vacuum tube design and Fortran 4 skills as well ...

Dust off your plotgo and redesign the eglet... (or Eglait if you'll be submitting your design to JohnFKerry)

19 posted on 07/21/2009 5:42:27 PM PDT by This_far
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To: SeekAndFind

C will never be obsolete. It will always come up during interviews!


20 posted on 07/21/2009 5:42:49 PM PDT by rahbert
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mark


21 posted on 07/21/2009 5:43:42 PM PDT by presently no screen name
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To: Tarpon
30 years ago I was running a state of the art business computer system. It was the size of my refrigerator. The drives were separate with 6 megs of storage. The disks were the size of LP's and there were 6 of them in one array IRC.

It had a blazing fast 9800 baud acoustic modem.

Now my cell phone has more computing power. If you spend the time to keep yourself current, you'll be alright.

22 posted on 07/21/2009 5:44:11 PM PDT by Lurker (The avalanche has begun. The pebbles no longer have a vote.)
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To: rahbert
C will never be obsolete. It will always come up during interviews!

I think just knowing C will get you nowhere today. Everyone is looking for Object Oriented skills, which means wither C++ or Java or C# ( I call them the big 3 ).
23 posted on 07/21/2009 5:44:49 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: bytesmith

Job Control Language is a little before my day but I never heard anything good about it from those who had to use it.


24 posted on 07/21/2009 5:46:22 PM PDT by SpaceBar
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To: SeekAndFind

Dbase/Foxpro anyone?
Arcnet?

g=c800:5


25 posted on 07/21/2009 5:46:44 PM PDT by Poser (Typed on my Woot-off $169 Asus Web Book (Linux of course))
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To: nnn0jeh

ping


26 posted on 07/21/2009 5:47:48 PM PDT by kalee (01/20/13 The end of an error.... Obama even worse than Carter.)
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To: SeekAndFind

IMO, this is a problem many job seekers in many fields have.

Rather than being good at achieving *results* (using whatever tools are *suitable for the job*), they are “specialists” in one technology or another.

Surest way to a career dead end that I know.

“I can use an electric drill really well, man! I know all the best kinds of bits to buy, and I used to write articles for ‘Boring World’, an electric drill journal!”

“Nails? What are those? Glue? No man, you want to drill a hole! Glue isn’t good!”

“Did I tell you about the time I built a house using only a drill? It was pretty cool... until it fell down. Hire me and my drill skillz and you can’t go wrong!”


27 posted on 07/21/2009 5:48:20 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Stop dissing drunken sailors! At least they spend their OWN money.)
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To: AAABEST

HTML is the grandchild of GML which I used in conjunction with COBOL to produce every document that was issued by an insurance company worked for many years ago.


28 posted on 07/21/2009 5:48:34 PM PDT by CaptRon
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To: bamahead

I always thought COBOL was a good skill to have for “in-between jobs” jobs. Banks or financial institutions always had legacy code that either needed updating or conversion. It rare knowledge so you could charge a pretty penny. But you can’t make a career out it. And at this point (end of the first decade of 21st century), I would suspect almost all of the old databases should have been converted into something more modern.


29 posted on 07/21/2009 5:49:35 PM PDT by Clock King (There's no way to fix D.C.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Love this post. 10 skills I never had and are irrelevent!


30 posted on 07/21/2009 5:51:21 PM PDT by When do we get liberated? (They must think we are stupid. They want to be green, I want to be gault.)
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To: SeekAndFind
10: COBOL

There are STILL a lot of COBOL systems out there. One of my jobs though is to convert old COBOL code to something more modern. So every time I go out on a contract another COBOL system dies.

31 posted on 07/21/2009 5:52:18 PM PDT by Domandred (Hope is the first step on the road to disappointment.. I am Jim Thompson.)
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To: Nervous Tick
Agreed. There seems to be a popular emphasis on a “magic bullet” language that will guarantee permanent job security, instead of a thorough knowledge of algorithms and data structures, with an ability to pick up new programming paradigms as they come along.
32 posted on 07/21/2009 5:52:18 PM PDT by SpaceBar
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To: SpaceBar
11) Zilog Z80 assembler.

You mean the Mostek Z80 cross assembler they wrote in FORTRAN?

Nothing like writing assembler code on an 029 keypunch...

33 posted on 07/21/2009 5:52:40 PM PDT by freeandfreezing
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To: SeekAndFind

MCPD = me


34 posted on 07/21/2009 5:53:52 PM PDT by domeika (Who is Jim Thompson?)
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To: SpaceBar; bytesmith
Job Control Language is a little before my day but I never heard anything good about it from those who had to use it.

Nah, if you knew what you were doing, JCL was fun! Especially checkpoint / restart on tapes! And who could forget PROC overrides! :-)

35 posted on 07/21/2009 5:54:01 PM PDT by COBOL2Java (Big government more or less guarantees rule by creeps and misfits.)
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To: Domandred

>> One of my jobs though is to convert old COBOL code to something more modern. So every time I go out on a contract another COBOL system dies.

I hope they’re paying you well.


36 posted on 07/21/2009 5:54:46 PM PDT by Nervous Tick (Stop dissing drunken sailors! At least they spend their OWN money.)
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To: Clock King
Banks or financial institutions always had legacy code that either needed updating or conversion. It rare knowledge so you could charge a pretty penny. But you can’t make a career out it.

Been making a career out of it for 6 years now actually, but it is going away fairly rapidly.

37 posted on 07/21/2009 5:55:28 PM PDT by Domandred (Hope is the first step on the road to disappointment.. I am Jim Thompson.)
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To: loungitude

“Tubes live!”

Yeah, but in my phono preamp, not my computer.


38 posted on 07/21/2009 5:56:20 PM PDT by proxy_user
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To: bytesmith

Me too.


39 posted on 07/21/2009 5:57:38 PM PDT by CaptRon
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To: SeekAndFind

Ms Leung is shooting ducks in a barrel and missing, too! I wouldn’t hire her with these skills.


40 posted on 07/21/2009 5:57:38 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Let us prey!)
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To: SeekAndFind
21 years ago I specialized in Software QA.

Quality Assurance is all about methodology that is not language specific and is integral to all structured software developement life cycles.

41 posted on 07/21/2009 5:58:29 PM PDT by AU72
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To: Nervous Tick

Sounds like the kinda guy you wouldn’t want to be in the same boat with.


42 posted on 07/21/2009 6:00:48 PM PDT by infool7 (Ignorance isn't bliss its slavery in denial)
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To: SeekAndFind

This is why I chose electrical engineering over computer science - 30 years ago. Maxwell’s equations never get outdated.


43 posted on 07/21/2009 6:03:55 PM PDT by Locomotive Breath
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To: COBOL2Java

Exactly!


44 posted on 07/21/2009 6:04:45 PM PDT by CaptRon
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To: Clock King

You’d be surprised. COBOL is still heavily used on Mainframes at Banks for massive number crunching. There’s really nothing better at doing it!

BUT...most of those programs have been in place for decades, and continuous development isn’t common, so demand for coders stays really low.


45 posted on 07/21/2009 6:05:58 PM PDT by bamahead (Few men desire liberty; most men wish only for a just master. -- Sallust)
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To: Non-Sequitur

LOL, never heard of that one. My uncle and brother are IT guys and will pass that along.


46 posted on 07/21/2009 6:06:31 PM PDT by max americana
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To: Domandred

Henceforth I dub thee COBOL KILLA’!!


47 posted on 07/21/2009 6:06:51 PM PDT by bamahead (Few men desire liberty; most men wish only for a just master. -- Sallust)
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To: AU72

Sorry, but every QA person I ever dealt with thought they were programmers but didn’t have the training. They never failed to blame the programming staff when they signed off for the programs to go into productiion though.


48 posted on 07/21/2009 6:07:12 PM PDT by CaptRon
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To: CaptRon

Me three.


49 posted on 07/21/2009 6:08:08 PM PDT by ItsForTheChildren
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To: SeekAndFind

Anyone with outdated skills can always go to work for the government. Government is so far behind the times, that they are still using obsolete equipment and programs and buying parts for old computers on ebay.


50 posted on 07/21/2009 6:08:18 PM PDT by Pining_4_TX
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