IBM Systems Magazine, Power Systems - February 2018 - 37
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Generation Language Edition.
Diephuis says he uses RDi on
his own systems, adding that it
always makes an impression when
he demonstrates it to clients.
"With RDi and some of the other
conversion tools that are available,
there's no reason you can't convert
to modern RPG," he says.
And yet, Diephuis characterizes many IBM i clients as still
unwilling to move forward. They
feel a modernization project
would take too long and prove
too costly. They don't see the
long-term benefits, or how all
of that old code-so much of
which remains vital to their
businesses-could possibly be
A New Pitch
In addition to reimagining RPG
and wide-ranging innovations
with Rational software tools,
IBM has done something else to
convince clients to modernize:
changing its messaging.
For several years, IBM went
about it in this fashion: Its
consultants would painstakingly
outline the task at hand. They'd
take an inventory of a client's
programs and their complexity.
They'd calculate the lines of
code, which could run into the
millions. Then they'd provide a
project timeline-often in years
rather than months. Finally came
the cost estimate, which would
often reach six figures.
In retrospect, Diephuis says it
isn't surprising that most clients
weren't receptive. "We got that
wrong," he says.
To be sure, a modernization
project isn't a small job. But let's
return to our home maintenance
analogy: If IBM Power Systems
hardware is the underpinning of
your IT infrastructure and your
critical application has served
your business for 20-plus years,
you have a strong foundation.
That's important because it
makes the job ahead easier.
While it will take much more
than a fresh coat of paint, you
don't need to tear everything
down and start over.
Diephuis says that IBM's message has become more nuanced.
A Step-Wise Approach
to IBM i Application
Ask 25 managers what IBM i application modernization means to
them and you'll get 25 different
of application modernization is:
The ongoing process of keeping
your IBM i line-of-business applications effective and useful in an
ever-changing business environment.
The competitive pressures, the
and the demand to continually
improve return-on-investment never
stop. Ever. Something is always
changing, something is always
throwing up a new challenge.
Application modernization isn't
something you ever stop doing.
Modernization may include
refreshing your RPG app's UI, but
it may also encompass creating
mobile apps, adjunct IBM i web
components, building web services,
third-party apps and other platform
integration-all done without business disruption.
Don't be paralyzed by fear of
failure when it comes to making
application modernization decisions. Take small steps to achieve
success quickly and then build on
that success for bigger projects. This
minimizes your risk and substantially
increases chances for your ongoing
application modernization success.
Your Modernization Toolbox
Ease the modernization process with these resources:
"Seven Keys to Future-Proofing Your RPG Applications"-
RPG experts Jon Paris and Susan Gantner share their tips
and tricks for ensuring that your mission-critical applications
stay resilient for years to come. bit.ly/2qfEr4V
"Keeping up With RDi Enhancements"-Learn how the latest
enhancements to Rational* Developer for i can help your
modernization efforts. bit.ly/2lNaeom
"Getting Started With Agile Principles"-A quick guide
to implementing Agile methodology in your application
development process. ibm.co/2EPaH2d
Product specialist, ASNA
He's been involved with the IBM
midrange community for years
and vividly remembers listening to
the They Might Be Giants "Lincoln"
ibmsystemsmag.com FEBRUARY 2018 // 37