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Re: [open-cobol-list] newbie alert : cobol : 85 : data management, : que

From: Simon Sobisch
Subject: Re: [open-cobol-list] newbie alert : cobol : 85 : data management, : question
Date: Wed, 05 Nov 2014 21:26:19 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.3; WOW64; rv:24.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/24.6.0

> Date: Sat, 01 Nov 2014 09:44:35 -0400
> From: Patrick <address@hidden>
> Subject: Re: [open-cobol-list] open-cobol : full 85 support : bounty
>       ...
> To: address@hidden, address@hidden
> Message-ID: <address@hidden>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=windows-1252; format=flowed
> On 14-10-31 12:43 PM, Mayuresh Kathe wrote:
>> hello,
>> i am initiating a personal project to improve conditions in rural india
>> by effecting social change via technology.
>> for the same, i have chosen to go ahead with cobol-85 due to it's
>> impressive record-oriented data manipulation abilities.
>> it being a self-funded effort, i can't afford to go for big iron stuff
>> from ibm, etc.
>> hence, i would prefer to go with open-cobol running under a highly
>> modified linux system.
>> i have come to realize that open-cobol does not yet have full support
>> for the cobol-85 standard.
>> who be the right person to communicate with regarding raising a bounty
>> to bring in full cobol-85 support to open-cobol?
>> do write back at the earliest.
>> i am travelling and hence have intermittent network access, please do
>> not feel let down if i don't respond immediately, will do so as soon as
>> i get back to my operating base in bombay.
>> best regards,
>> ~mayuresh
>> ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> _______________________________________________
>> open-cobol-list mailing list
>> address@hidden
> Hi Mayuresh
> I think this is going to be tough. Brian Tiffin is our team leader and 
> Simon Sobisch is is our lead developer but I don't think either really 
> gets involved with money much. Perhaps you could explain what 85 
> features are missing and why they need to be implemented? If you were 
> able to fund the addition of these that would be great but maybe if you 
> could make a case for them they could be included without cost.
> Life is absolutely crushing me right now and I can't get this done but I 
> have been planning on driving down the street to IBM to ask if there was 
> a way for them to back our project. It looks like they try to get people 
> interested in microfocus which comes with about a $5K + price tag. Our 
> project could get people trained in Cobol much faster and if we agreed 
> to default to the IBM dialect maybe they would fund us.
> -Patrick
> P.S my wife is from the Philippines, I am curious how Cobol could be 
> used to improves lives in rural underdeveloped places
> P.P.S We have had a recent name change and now we are GnuCOBOL
> ------------------------------
> Message: 6
> Date: Wed, 5 Nov 2014 09:19:45 +0530
> From: Mayuresh Kathe <address@hidden>
> Subject: [open-cobol-list] newbie alert : cobol : 85 : data management
>       :       question
> To: address@hidden
> Message-ID: <address@hidden>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
> hello,
> how does cobol, and by virtue of it's standards adherence,
> open-cobol, manage data?
> as i'd mentioned in a previous email, i am working on a
> self-funded project to use modern computing systems for
> initiating and sustaining social change in rural india.
> i had been to one of the regions i intend to adopt for the
> pilot, and have found the following needs;
> 1. land record management,
> 2. population record management,
> 3. medical history management,
> 4. criminal record management,
> 5. produce transaction management.
> how would i be able to apply cobol-85 to bring this to
> fruition?
> i definitely do not wish to use an 'rdbms', and certainly
> cannot afford a mainframe.
> is there any mechanism within open-cobol which would
> facilitate record management using in-memory datasets,
> which i believe are more efficient than approaching the
> disk for every request.
> hope my questions are on target per the agenda of this list.
> else, i apologize for the deviation.
> best regards,
> ~mayuresh

Hi Mayuresh,

I think the first question would be what you need - GnuCOBOL implements
enough of COBOL 85 for most older sources and if you going to (re-)write
COBOL sources the newer elements from 2002 and 2014 would only do good.
GnuCOBOL supports ISAM file access (ORGANIZATION IS INDEXED) which is
quite fast, even with lots of data (GnuCOBOL 2.1 / 2.2 may get a new
ISAM: backend Lightning DB which likely makes it even faster) if you
give it the right key definitions (and use them).
If you want fast access and the data is not too big you could use OCCURS
and with 2002 features you can use SORT table and afterwards SEARCH ALL
- you can't access data much faster.

I'd suggest to just give GnuCOBOL a try as I'm sure there is no free
COBOL implementation with that big user base and that much support for
the different standards and dialects.
Try to use the discussion boards, too (if you don't need the mailing
list because of mail-only-access).

If you realize there's something missing you can always tweak
cobc/libcob and support patches that will likely be accepted (maybe with
some modification but you'll get what you need). If you cannot do this
on your own ask at the discussion boards / mailing list or get a
programmer doing this work.

*Someone* may be available to tweak cobc/libcob for hire from May 2015
on :-)
But as said before, you don't have to wait, just start and ask where
you're stuck.


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