Thanks Sarah and Joe.  I think you suggestion of using string might work
for me.  I plan to try below to handle to column data conversion to RPG

In java class:
- public String getColumn(int x) 
- public String getColumn(String columnName)  

In RPG service program:
- Because RPG has build in functions that can easily convert a string
into a float data type, date, time, or timeStamp, all I need is to
create 5 different getColumnInXXXXX that call the jave getColumn method
and convert string data into these 5 different types: 
1) Float data (for numeric field)
2) Varying Length Charater field
3) Date
4) Time
5) TimeStamp
- This way caller will only need to do this: 
  ZoneField = getColumnInFloat(1)  // RPG assign float data to a decimal
  DateField = getColumnInDate(2)  
  TimeField = getColumnInDate(2)  
  CharField = getColumnInDate(2) 
  TimeStampField = getColumnInDate(2)  
- If data conversion field, the method will send an *escape message and
caller will need to handle this error.

Thanks for all your help

-----Original Message-----
From: java400-l-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:java400-l-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Sarah Poger
Sent: Friday, December 30, 2005 1:22 PM
To: Java Programming on and around the iSeries / AS400
Subject: Re: Generic java class that will allow RPG/RPGSQLE program
toaccessnon-iSeries Data

Joe- Perhaps an approach that combines your idea and mine. The
getColumn() method returns an Object, then another program takes the
object and calls the "instanceOf()" method to find out the actual class,
then it fills in the data structure that you proposed. Then passes a
pointer to the populated datastructure back.
Using this combined approach, the "getColumn()" method doesn't have to
deal with populating the datastructure.

It would also simplify error handling. If the "instanceOf" method
returns something that is not usable from RPG, then the Java program can
throw/log an exception.

-Sarah Poger Gladstone

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