The Perl Conference 2018

A Punch Card Ate My Program!

Walt Mankowski | Mon, 6/18 at 5:10 pm | 50 minutes | Ballroom A

COBOL is the Rodney Dangerfield of programming languages — it doesn’t get any respect. COBOL is routinely denigrated for its verbosity and dismissed as archaic, and for good reason: COBOL bears little to no resemblance to modern programming languages. Yet COBOL is far from a dead language. It processes an estimated 85% of all business transactions, and 5 billion lines of new COBOL code are written every year!

At a past YAPC I argued that COBOL isn’t such a bad language. This year it’s time for an opposing point of view. We’ll journey deep into the past to recreate a retro bug that could only happen in COBOL! Our travels will include:

syntactic white space!
scotch tape!
dueling compiler options!
virtual punch cards!
code blocks!

No punch cards were harmed in the creation of this talk.

Audience: Everyone
Track: Development