25 March 2009

DB2 for COBOL-z/OS

There is much ado about the Sun/IBM marriage these days, and I have made my contributions elsewhere, so it is time to do so here.

The issue that concerns me is MySql. On the surface, Sun spending $1 billion for it made no sense at the time, and now we have the Drizzle-ing off of what makes a RDBMS worth having:

Aker has already selected particular functionality for removal: modes, views, triggers, prepared statements, stored procedures, query cache, data-conversion inserts, access control lists and some data types. (Chris Duckett on zdnet/24 jul 2008)

That report says InnoDB is/will be included. Hmmm.

What I see happening if this goes through, IBM will roll up the MySql name and ship DB2 for COBOL-z/OS. I don't see IBM shipping an Oracle bit of kit (InnoDB) with "it's" database. At the same time, conversions of COBOL/VSAM applications (I have been involved in a few) typically are done for the purpose of _looking_ like the new application is a database system, but all of the ACID remains in the COBOL (no reason to get rid of that, it works. riiiiiiiiiiiiiiight). Classic MySql (up through about 4.0) was just a sql parser in front of the file system.

This is really all that the COBOL coders want, anyway. They don't understand ACID or Normal Forms. For marketing purposes, the Pointy Haired Bosses need to say that their 40 year old code is really Brand New and Updated to Modern Technology (sql:92 is modern by this definition), so off to DB2 it goes. But no one wants to think relationally. Real DB2 for z/OS does included the proper kit to build a proper application, but I have never seen any of that used.

MySql gives them the perfect (or perverse, depending) answer: DB2 of COBOL-z/OS. Coming to a shop near you. Real soon now.

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