** This thread discusses the article: The Midrange Manager: Names Are Important **
Actually, we never used field names in form of xxyyyy. For RPG projects, years ago, we used xxxxxx, using a field reference file. With FRF, item number (to continue your example) has the same name in every file that uses it. It could be ITEMNO, or ITMNBR, or even ITEM#, but whichever one was chosen, it's the same everywhere. For anything developed since RPG IV (ILE), we switched to using ten character names. We are still careful, however, to avoid # and other non-alphabetics, because we also have to live with COBOL. Perhaps the prevalence of xxyyyy in some shops was due to influence of Synon/2E (now COOL:2E). But COOL:2E is a code generator, so names were formatted that way for a very specific reason.