COmmon Business Oriented Language

<language, business> /koh'bol/ (COBOL) A programming language for simple computations on large amounts of data, designed by the CODASYL Committee in April 1960.

COBOL's natural language style is intended to be largely self-documenting. It introduced the record structure.

COBOL was probably the most widely used programming language during the 1960s and 1970s.

Many of the major programs that required repair or replacement due to Year 2000 software rot issues were originally written in COBOL, and this was responsible for a short-lived demand for programmers fluent in this "dead language".

Even in 2002 though, new COBOL programs are still being written in some organisations and many old COBOL programs are still running in dinosaur shops.

Major revisions in 1968 (ANS X3.23-1968), 1974 (ANS X3.23-1974) and 1985.

Many hackers regard COBOL with fear and loathing for being an evil, weak, verbose, and flabby language used by card wallopers to do boring mindless things on dinosaur mainframes.

Many believe that all COBOL programmers are suits or code grinders, and would deny all knowledge of the language.

Usenet newsgroup: news:comp.lang.cobol.

["Initial Specifications for a Common Business Oriented Language" DoD, US GPO, Apr 1960].

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