Looking back over my career

Looking back over my time at IBM somethings changed, some things have not changed much.

One of my first jobs was CICS build. These were the days when Systems Test took a year – and we had one build a month. My job was to compile all of the modules, print the listings, put the clean compiles in the rack, and take the failing listings to the developer. DASD was expensive, and I remember going to see the new double density 3340s with their 70MBs capacity! It was a big leap to be able to store listings on DASD when DASD was “cheap” – and spinning platters 2 foot across!

We ran the ( the original DOS, later renamed as VSE) and VS1under VM/360. If you wanted a new instance of DOS, you created the paging packs etc, and changed the VM exec, and started it.

We would put fixes onto the SYSRES, and give the developers a choice of the ‘old’ or ‘new’ SYSRES. it is strange that this quick deploy is now one of the “latest developments” in “cloud”.

The pendulum swings too and fro.

  •  We had green screens. If it broke, you went to a different one and logged on – easy.
  • We then had PCs, and a host emulator. If your PC had problems, you took it to someone to fix – and had to wait till it was fixed. Not easy.
  •  We then moved all of the technology down to the PC, for example Eclipse. At one point I had more than 5 versions of Eclipse on my laptop, all at different versions, and fix levels. This was hard, as you were not allowed to logon to someone else machine. Upgrading these systems was fraught with danger – in case it did not restart – or the changes you just made were incompatible.
  • We now have a web browser interface and all of the driving power is done in the back end systems – just like a green screen!