Meet Your Mainframe Staff, 2020

credit: reynermedia

Every site that depends on a mainframe is at a slightly different stage in dealing with the retiring work force. All of these sites would agree that the layout of their mainframe staff in the future may bear little resemblance to the way it looks today. Meet your mainframe staff, 2020: Your systems programmer came in with a liberal arts degree but impressed everyone with her natural curiosity and intelligence during the interview process. Once … [Read more...]

Yes, Your Mainframe’s Future Is That Important to Us

COM and logo

On September 2, we announced our acquisition by the private equity firm Thoma Bravo. We also now announced that we plan to operationally separate our mainframe and APM businesses—and that the resulting mainframe-dedicated company will carry the Compuware name. As the new president of Compuware’s mainframe business, I wanted to share my thoughts about how these two moves will impact our customers. What Your Mainframe Means to Us Many view your … [Read more...]

Applications: What To Keep, What To Replace?

Credit: Joe + Jeanette Archie

I was affected by the flooding that hit the Detroit area recently.  While cleaning out my basement I was struck by the amount of things I had—for no good reason. Let me explain. Many things I had, I had because they were given to me, or someone wanted me to have it, or it was free.  But I didn't seek them out. I didn't identify a need and then fill it.  I just had them.  Sure, some things I found I could use, but others... not so much. This made … [Read more...]

Do You Put Cheap Oil in Your Corvette?


Sometimes shaving costs makes sense.  Other times, it can be extremely short-sighted. If you own a classic Corvette, for example, you shouldn’t feed it cheap oil.  That’s because the pennies you save in the short term are outweighed by the potential damage you’ll do to your vehicle in the long term. The same is true of the mainframe.  Yes, it’s important to control mainframe-related costs.  But the worst way to do that is to simply downgrade to … [Read more...]

Should I Be Committed?


While most people have congratulated me on my new position as leader of Compuware’s mainframe business, some folks think I should be committed.  To them, the mainframe is moribund—so they think I’m crazy for taking this job. Well, I agree.  I should be committed.  And I am.  I am committed to the mainframe and to Compuware’s leadership of the mainframe market. But it’s not because I’m crazy.  It’s because the mainframe has been around for 50 … [Read more...]

Going Au Naturel: Comments as a Complexity Metric


I’ve written a lot about metrics as a means to gauge the complexity of a program including SLOC and the Halstead and McCabe metrics. An often over looked metric – and one I haven’t touched on before – is one that’s in plain sight: comments Comments are added to programs presumably to explain things that aren't clear. And sometimes they’re enough just to get the gist of how complex it might be. While you could start with a simple count of the … [Read more...]

Why You Need Current DB2 RUNSTATS


Not surprisingly, one of the questions I get asked most often asked by customers is how much CPU could they be saving – and how do they pinpoint the not-so-obvious sources of inefficiencies that might be using excess CPU. I tell them for DB2 applications, executing RUNSTATS is a good place to start. RUNSTATS is a DB2 utility that captures detailed information about the DB2 objects, tables, indexes, etc. and stores that information in the DB2 … [Read more...]

How to Know When Code is Complex, Part 3: Using the McCabe Complexity Metric


The McCabe Complexity Metric, as discussed in my last post, relates to the number of decision points (points where the logic path splits) in a section of code.  When used along with the Halstead Metric, the McCabe Metric can help you objectively assess and compare the complexity of new programs and applications. By using a threshold you can focus on the areas of greatest complexity, which you can then break into smaller, more manageable, logical … [Read more...]

Three quick steps to prepare for the mainframe retiring work force


The retiring mainframe work force issue has proven to be a slow erosion over time rather than some type of drastic drop off. No matter where your company sits in that continuum, here are three simple steps you can take to help reduce the impact moving forward: 1. Get Current “When is the best time to buy a Kirby vacuum cleaner? When the Kirby vacuum cleaner salesman is here!” That was the last ditch effort sales line of a door-to-door salesman to … [Read more...]

The Impact of a Mobile First World on Modern IT Infrastructure


Everyone from early educators, bloggers, and even President Obama himself, is encouraging the general public to “write an app”. While there are an abundance of tools and interfaces at our disposal, even for the rookie programmer, an important factor to consider is determining requirements on the back-end infrastructure. The general populace expects a certain level of app speeds and functionality; what kind of new or changed infrastructure will be … [Read more...]