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Martin (Carlisle) said:

"but no self-respecting Comp Sci department I know teaches COBOL anymore. .
."

and then goes on to refine his meaning of "respect".

I don't agree.  Now I don't like COBOL any better than the next guy, but I
respect its place in
the world -- and not only historically.  Some respectable (in my mind)
Computer Science
departments teach File Processing using COBOL.  Others encourage their
students to take
COBOL courses taught in other curricula.

The company I work for still does an enormous amount of its business-world
work in COBOL,
as well as C, C++, Java, and whatever else is appropriate for the job
(including Ada).

I DO agree with his assessment that it's cost-effective to retrain a good
software engineer in Ada.
Back in the late 80's, when very few schools were teaching Ada, I really
didn't care whether a
recent graduate (for example) already knew the language.  I only cared that
they knew how to
work hard and learn quickly -- and it paid off.

Philip W. Brashear
EDS Conformance Testing Center
4646 Needmore Road, Bin 46
P.O. Box 24593
Dayton, OH  45424-0593
(937) 237-4510
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http://www.eds-conform.com