Eclipse and z13: the Innovation Combination

03.13.2013

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The rapid pace of change in IT is one of the biggest challenges confronting IT leaders in mainframe organizations. Recent innovative solutions supporting a changing IT landscape include a contemporary development framework called Eclipse and a ground-breaking flexible enterprise environment called z13. What are the advantages of using Eclipse and z13, and how can these enable organizations with maturing core systems to keep up, and embrace innovation?

Solving a familiar problem
One of the problems large development organizations face is a lack of communication between developers who know the original so-called “legacy” languages and those who are building other applications, using other languages on other environments. These two separate groups often use different tools, processes, skills and deadlines. The obvious solution to this problem is to use a development environment which caters for both communities.

Eclipse is the multi-language, industry standard Integrated Development Environment (IDE). It is used widely for developing applications in Java and a variety of other languages. Eclipse provides a familiar environment for developers used to modern usability and functionality, as it consists of the same tooling, functions and features as they are used to. It allows all languages to be “plugged” into its framework, so everyone can use the same tooling and environment, regardless of language choice. Eclipse promises to improve application development right across the enterprise.

Smart choice
IBM’s high performance mainframe, z13, offers a flexible choice of platforms enabling workload to be built and deployed according to a fit for purpose model. Customers can take advantage of the latest z/OS mainframe environment, or choose to exploit z/Linux, AIX and even Windows environments for certain tasks. Optimized processes and capacity will then allow for a better focus on developing new services to push growth and innovation. Offering a lower Total Cost of Ownership and faster performance, z13 is a platform which makes the most business sense for many enterprises today.

Bringing it all together
As the IT world is providing innovative technology that sets to unify both development processes on the one hand (Eclipse) and provides effective platform consolidation options on the other (z13), customers are now looking to ensure these environments support the continuation of existing, core applications.

To solve this, the requirement is for an Eclipse-based solution to allow you to build core z13 apps using the most prevalent and fit for purpose business language of all: COBOL.

Smarter teamwork
Micro Focus Enterprise Developer’s ability to work hand-in-hand with z13 to bring both mature and new languages together under one roof directly addresses the problematic gap in developer skills. This forms a strong bridge across all development teams and effectively widens the available resource pool.

The benefits of Enterprise Developer for the z13 environment are numerous. First it enables teams to develop directly on the mainframe through the Eclipse IDE. This allows for a fast adoption of the technology as it presents the mainframe and its processes in a contemporary view. However, the reliance on the mainframe and its heavily demanded resources can be removed by editing, compiling, debugging and running applications with zero waiting time, directly in Windows.

Mainframe-based application processes – such as Source Management systems, batch job queue, or output views – can be simply integrated into the Enterprise Developer Eclipse interface. Furthermore, the familiarity of the Eclipse development environment will allow Java programmers to readily contribute to COBOL application build and maintenance projects in a matter of hours. This fosters closer collaboration, yielding higher code quality and 40% faster delivery of robust, z13 applications.

The innovation path
Enterprise Developer’s contemporary, robust development environment for z13, enables costs to be driven down, bottlenecks to be removed and innovation accelerated, enabling customers to build truly fit for purpose z13 applications faster than ever before. It is this combination of strengths which may enable organizations with mature core systems to keep up with business demands and embrace innovation.

The latest update of Micro Focus Enterprise Developer for z13 will be available in spring 2013. For more information see www.microfocus.com

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