IBM Systems Magazine, Power Systems - August 2018 - 16
Mike Skvarenina poses
for a photo in the server
room at Holy Name
application support and the
development of new PHP apps,
APIs and the eventual rewrite of
all of its RPG code. This approach
will allow the organization to
continue using its existing and
proven medical information
system while also setting itself up
for the future.
"Mode 1 will cover the RPG side
of things. I don't want to call it
'legacy,' because it's very mature,
seasoned and reliable, but it
needs to be maintained and even
enhanced. Hence why we began
our RPG internship program,"
Skvarenina remarks. "Mode 2
is more focused on what's new,
modern and mainstream."
Skvarenina envisions this on
a sliding scale. It would start at
95 percent Mode 1 and 5 percent
Mode 2. In two to three years,
slide those numbers to 30 percent
Mode 1 and 70 percent Mode 2.
In 10 years, the needle will have
completely flipped, with Mode
1 at 1 percent and Mode 2 at 99
percent. In keeping with this,
all existing RPG code would be
rewritten as PHP or another, more
He notes, however, that whatever
language is used, the application
would likely still run on the
Power Systems platform. "When
everything transitions to PHP, we
could switch to Linux* on PCs, but
why? The platform is incredible.
The OS is bulletproof. And the
database is fantastic," Skvarenina
says. "We like the reliability of our
Power Systems platform. We like
the performance it provides. We like
that it supports hundreds of users
with sub-second response times.
We just like it."
As the application-development
world trembles-no matter the OS
16 // AUGUST 2018 ibmsystemsmag.com
or hardware-it's important that
organizations flex with it. To its
considerable credit, Holy Name
has recognized and embraced this.
It's educating a new generation
of RPG programmers and
adopting new languages and
development techniques. It hasn't
forgotten its long-ago computing
roots, however-and nor has
"RPG is a very powerful
language, and many companies
are still using it for their
application development. I
mean, we even used it to jump
from the green-screen interface
to a web-based interface-and
early at that. And our core
medical information system is
still running without a hiccup,"
Jim Utsler, senior writer for IBM
Systems Magazine, has been covering
technology for more than 20 years.