It's called Database Independence. The logical view of the data is different than the physical view which is exactly what a relational database does.

The weird thing to me is that Dbase did exactly that for years and IBM couldn't do it. The one issue that I can see is that RPG maintains a single copy of a variable and moves the database fields from the buffer to single variable so if you added a new field and you had two tables with the same name how would RPG know which table changed.

One way to deal with the issue is to externalize the I/O. Put your database I/O in an external service program but know days why bother. SQL does everything plus a thousand times more.

I think shops should do this always, at least with new stuff. Just one place to change things, no level check worries, or even recompiling a hundred programs, all that. I've got most of my I/O in my most recent project encapsulated into a service program. In fact somebody did a utility program once, if I remember correctly (a Joey?), that generated a service program with procedures for each field.


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