COBOL is a compiled English-like computer programming language designed for business use. It is imperative, procedural and, since 2002, object-oriented. Primarily used in business, finance, and administrative systems for companies and governments. This still widely used in legacy applications deployed on mainframe computers, such as large-scale batch and transaction processing jobs. However, due to its declining popularity and the retirement of experienced COBOL programmers, programs being migrated to new platforms, rewritten in modern languages or replaced with software packages. Most programming in language is now purely to maintain existing applications.
Academic computer scientists generally uninterested in business applications when COBOL created and not involved in its design; it designed from the ground up as a computer language for business, with an emphasis on inputs and outputs, whose only data types were numbers and strings of text. However, for its verbosity, design process and reduced support for structured programming. These weaknesses resulted inconsistently and, though intended to be English-like, mostly incomprehensible programs with high redundancy.
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