BCD now has a WebSmart PHP product that generates PHP code, as versus
using CGI.

I really wanted to bring in the PHP product where I work, but the powers
that be nixed it for dot-NET :( :( :( Now there are other things that
have halted any such direction :( but I'm learning them both in the
meantime anyway.

Meaning learning dot-NET with C# and their web-friendly classes, but
more importantly in my view, PHP.

Mono notwithstanding (and I wish them well), the truly open technologies
are the safest. I don't mean safe in the sense of big long-lasting
vendor, obviously, I mean it's not beholden to hidden proprietary
technology with their own financial interests.

The "i" has proven itself as a proprietary technology, but complaints
over how it's been handled and marketed over the years says a lot.
That's because of first the interests of the company that owns it, and
then the internal politics and culture and philosophies and management
of that company. And even so, IBM has proven to have been a better
"parent" than Microsoft.


-----Original Message-----
From: midrange-l-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:midrange-l-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Jim Franz
Sent: Tuesday, September 02, 2008 9:08 PM
To: Midrange Systems Technical Discussion
Subject: Re: 4GL's

If I ever convince both myself and the powers that be here that we
must "webify" everything, I have no intention whatsoever of learning
the nitty gritty details of HTML, JSF, J2EE, etc. There will have to
be something that does for "webifying" that ProGen Plus did for
BCD (the same people who brought you ProGen) have Websmart - the same
concept - you work in a easy to learn psuedo code, and other than debug,
no need to ever look at the generated code. However, Websmart's
generated ile rpg is very readable & clear. They have many advanced
features inside the tool to build a fully functional web applications,
and connections to many other BCD tools (portal, analysis tool, etc),
plus a php option rather than rpgle.
I have no problem with 4gl tools that can build real business apps and
be manageable and maintainable.
Now they have a tool to pull your rpg & dds into their Websmart format.

Jim Franz
(using websmart at a customer for 9 years)

----- Original Message -----
From: "Jeff Crosby" <jlcrosby@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: "Midrange Systems Technical Discussion" <midrange-l@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Tuesday, September 02, 2008 5:09 PM
Subject: Re: 4GL's

I have to chime in a bit here. Many many years ago I went with ProGen
Plus from BCD for generating subfile programs. For a couple of years
after that, I was worried because I could no longer write a subfile
program from scratch. I got over that. I couldn't care less how to
one from scratch. ProGen Plus does everything I need in the way of
subfiles in literally 1/10 the time. I care not one whit for all that

If I ever convince both myself and the powers that be here that we
"webify" everything, I have no intention whatsoever of learning the
nitty gritty details of HTML, JSF, J2EE, etc. There will have to be
something that does for "webifying" that ProGen Plus did for subfile
programs. I am not a computer geek that works for a business, I am a
businessman who likes to use computers to solve business problems.

Last week and next week I am attending an online web class (free) put
by IBM about EGL I'm spending 6+ hours a day hands on finding
out/learning what I can about EGL. The depth and breadth of what EGL
does is astonishing and I've only scratched the surface. I don't even
know enough yet to be dangerous. The powerpoint for the first class
alone is over 1,000 pages.

Both Joe Pluta's ("international authority on System i technology and
EGL") and Pete Helgren's names are mentioned on the foils. I don't
if EGL will be for us, but it is indeed impressive.

Jeff Crosby
UniPro Foodservice/Dilgard
Opinions expressed are my own and not necessarily those of my company.

Unless I say so.

Joe Pluta wrote:
david gibbs wrote:

You're 80% of the way there.

You are correct ... I don't trust generated code any further than I
spit it. I far prefer to use code that I wrote or at least can
reasonably maintain myself (which is why I'm not adverse to using a
Wizard to create a starting point).

I understand this point. But I hope you agree this is purely a
stand - David Gibbs prefers rolling his own, although he will accept
help from the friendly Wizard <grin>. I understand that position,
even agree wherever practical. However, I hope you'll also agree
lots of shops don't have the time to address their application
much less rewrite existing plumbing code, and that there are valid
business situations to use proprietary and/or generated code. We all
rely on code we cannot maintain to one degree or another, especially
those of us who use Windows (much less those who program for it).

So, the idea that the code is generated shouldn't be a showstopper
everyone, even if it is for you. For people who don't have the time
reinvent or even reimplement the wheel, generated code can actually
be a
positive thing because it allows them to concentrate on the business
logic rather than the plumbing.

The rest of my dislike is half the quality of the code they generate
and half being tied to a single companies product to generate the
Heaven help the company who used a code generator to develop a major

application ... have the generator's author go out of business ...
then have something go wrong with the generator due to an OS
Yes, in the case of EGL, I know the likelihood of this happening is
vanishingly slim ... but not with other products.

So you agree that your other issue is one that really doesn't apply
much to EGL.

Let me pose a question: do you think there's a larger contingency
IBM backing EGL or RPG? I know it's not quite an apples-to-apples
comparison, since RPG is likely to be around as long as the platform,
but I'm just pointing out that EGL has as large a commitment from IBM
anything. Rational has its own conference, and it's a big one. EGL
prominent there, and getting moreso.

I guess I'm saying that while the idea of EGL (or indeed any
being orphaned is not a completely unjustifiable concern, it's harder
justify when your primary development choice is RPG and the i.


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