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Breaking cover...

Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by small plastic bricks, Feb 29, 2008.

  1. small plastic bricks

    small plastic bricks New Member

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    Hi all, just thought it was about time I stopped lurking. I've been programming on mainframes since I started in IT in 1989, and was made redundant in January by a software house which folded within the following fortnight. Looking for a change of direction, since Cobol seems to be going the way of Latin...:dry

    I've now visited here quite often, usually as a result of Google searches on companies like Cerco. Gradually getting wise to them now. Latest experience was with a company calling themselves "I.T. Futures Online" - new name to me, same old story though.
     
    Certifications: Network+
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  2. hbroomhall

    hbroomhall Petabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Hi and welcome to CF!

    Harry.
     
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  3. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Welcome to CF! 8)

    All the best in the career change...
     
  4. wizard

    wizard Petabyte Poster

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    Hi there and welcome 8)
     
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  5. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Welcome!
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  6. sunn

    sunn Gigabyte Poster

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    Welcome to the forums...

    Cobol? Wow, I haven't even looked at Cobol code in the past 7-years (at least). Do any JCL too? If you want to continue using languages like Cobol, why not try companies that still have mainframes - like banks, insurance companies. There aren't many people that support the current 'old' infrastructure - or so I've read, so the competition should be light :) .
     
  7. onoski

    onoski Terabyte Poster

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    Welcome to CF:)
     
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  8. csx

    csx Megabyte Poster

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    Hi & Welcome. :)
     
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  9. Notes_Bloke

    Notes_Bloke Terabyte Poster

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    Hi & welcome to CF:D

    NB
     
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  10. UCHEEKYMONKEY
    Honorary Member

    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

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    Hello and welcome to CF:biggrin

    Well done on becoming a member:thumbleft
     
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  11. small plastic bricks

    small plastic bricks New Member

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    Thanks everyone for those warm welcomes! Always a pleasure to read.

    Hi Sunn. Yep, I've used JCL for almost as long as I've used Cobol. I don't necessarily want to continue using the legacy stuff, but any practical route to (say) Java, C#, or something in that vein seems to be to get employed by someone who's happy to cross train you, and gain the holy grail of experience that way. Therein lies the problem, especially when you're geographically isolated as I am - central Scotland is commutable (ie, Edinburgh/Glasgow/Stirling), and quite a few legacy systems still hold sway there, but competition for any available jobs certainly doesn't seem to be light. There still seem to be lots of dinosaurs like myself around, and a lot of the contract work in recent years seems to go offshore. Oddly enough, I've worked in Yorkshire about as much as I've worked in central Scotland...

    However, I'm still looking. And does anyone know of another way to crosstrain oneself and gain experience (and I don't mean answering Cerco ads!)? If so, I'd love to hear it.
     
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  12. hbroomhall

    hbroomhall Petabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Well - if you want to learn a more modern language there is no shortage of languages and books to go with them. And nearly all have versions available for free.

    Your biggest problem may be that the current trend for 'Object Orientated' languages will be a shock after Cobol!

    You *might* have a look at C - this isn't OO in style, but nearly all more recent languages have major imports from that. Then you might find it easier to go to C++, which is effectively C plus OO.

    But this depends on your learning style.

    Harry.
     
    Certifications: ECDL A+ Network+ i-Net+
    WIP: Server+
  13. sunn

    sunn Gigabyte Poster

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    A bit surprised that competition is as tough as it is, but I can’t disagree with what you’re seeing. Sorry that I can’t offer much advice. Hopefully Harry’s advice is useful; or that someone will come along and add more tidbits.

    Best of luck…
     
  14. small plastic bricks

    small plastic bricks New Member

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    Thanks Harry. I've already taken a look at C, C++, and VB, but haven't decided where to start yet. However, my main concern isn't so much which language is least daunting to me, as which would be the best to kick off with from a commercial point of view, given that I'm hoping to carry on working in programing for a few years yet! But it still comes down to "no experience = no job offer" in most cases, unless you believe you-know-who. That's still going to be my biggest problem, I'd think.
     
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  15. small plastic bricks

    small plastic bricks New Member

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    Thanks!

    Unfortunately, that's the UK situation, more or less. However, if Canada's looking for legacy programmers, I have an aunt in NB I've been meaning to visit for some time...:biggrin
     
    Certifications: Network+
    WIP: MCP
  16. S0l5

    S0l5 Bit Poster

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    Why not start with VB first im sure you wont struggle with it as you have previous experiance with Cobol then move your way up to C then go to C's brother (C++) and then finally C's hybrid cousin (C#) good luck! One you have learnt C/C++ the other languages will be ALOT easier for you.
     

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