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Re: [open-cobol-list] Bug Report

From: John R. Culleton
Subject: Re: [open-cobol-list] Bug Report
Date: Thu Oct 6 13:18:43 2005
User-agent: KMail/1.7.2

On Thursday 06 October 2005 07:15 pm, Robert Sherry wrote:
> John,
>     You are right. I meant to say: DATE-MODIFIED. Sorry. In any event, I
> believe it should work in MVS compatible mode. Do you disagree with that?
> Bob Sherry
If you put an asterisk in column 7 it will work just fine.

IMO strict compatibility with MVS in the IDENTIFICATION DIVISION
is a minor goal, compared to implementation of such things as the 
SCREEN SECTION and the extended DISPLAY statements. 

As I said before I have seen and written hundreds of COBOL
programs and I never recall seeing the DATE-MODIFIED paragraph
used. I have however seen such things as abbreviating
IDENTIFICATION to ID (allowable under COBOL F as I recall) which
caused no end of cross-platform problems. 

Part of the art of COBOL is to write as nearly as possible to the
standard, and within that universe to avoid constructs which are
rarely used.  DATE-MODIFIED fails both tests. I prefer the
features of the earlier standards to the later ones, but that is
a function of starting out in 1968. 

And yes I met Lt. Cdr. Grace Murray Hopper twice and still have
some programs written in the Navy Programming Languages Division
which she headed for so many years. So I tend to be a

John Culleton

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