Chapter 1. An Introduction to Structured Program Design in COBOL


To familiarize you with

  1. Why COBOL is such a popular business-oriented language.

  2. Programming practices and techniques.

  3. A history of how COBOL evolved and the use of the current ANS standard versions of COBOL.

  4. An overview of the four divisions of a COBOL program.


Types of Computer Programs

A program is a set of instructions that enable a computer to process data. There are two types of computer programs: operating system programs, which control the overall operations of the computer, and applications programs, which actually perform tasks required by users. The term used to describe all types of programs is called software.

An applications program operates on input data and converts it to meaningful output information. The following is an illustration of how a computer processes data:

Types of Computer Programs

A computer can process data only as efficiently and effectively as it is programmed.

The set of instructions in an applications program is written by a computer professional called an applications programmer or software developer.

Applications Programs

As noted, an applications program is written by an applications programmer or software developer to provide users with the information they need. Some applications programs are written to obtain a quick solution to a one-time problem; others are written to be ...

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