Programming


TechTip: Discovering Bluemix PDF Print E-mail
Programming - Dev Tools
Written by Ashok Iyengar   
Friday, 19 August 2016 00:00

The fastest way to discover Bluemix is to sign up for a free trial and start using it.

Ashok IyengarWritten by Ashok K. Iyengar

Editor’s note: This article is an excerpt from the book IBM Cloud Platform Primer.

 

Bluemix is IBM’s enterprise-grade cloud development and deployment platform—in other words, Platform as a Service (PaaS). It is hosted on SoftLayer, which is IBM’s Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). What makes Bluemix “open” is the fact that it’s built on top of and is an extension of the Cloud Foundry open-source development and deployment cloud platform. Combining the strength of IBM’s software with third-party technologies while using Cloud Foundry to keep it open, Bluemix offers an integrated development experience in the cloud. It helps both born-on-the-cloud and enterprise developers build applications with their choice of tools and languages. Bluemix features cloud integration services that enable a secure connection between an organization’s public apps and its private assets.

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Last Updated on Thursday, 18 August 2016 10:16
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Using Scope in Linear-Main Programs to Create More Stable Applications PDF Print E-mail
Programming - RPG
Written by Brian May   
Wednesday, 17 August 2016 00:00

Linear-main RPG programs eliminate the RPG logic cycle and add new levels of variable scoping to protect your code from bugs down the road.

brian mayWritten by Brian May

While I am no expert in the RPG logic cycle, I have had to deal with it in older applications over the years. Most RPG developers have dealt with a logic cycle program at least once. I can honestly say I have never written a new logic cycle program, but I have seen others in the community doing it. This article is not intended to start a religious war about cycle programming. There are some who will never give it up. Instead, this article will demonstrate how to create a program without the logic cycle and concentrate on what I think is a very useful benefit to using linear-main procedures in program.

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 17 August 2016 00:00
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SQL 101: Date-Related Functions, Part 3 - Extracting Information from Dates PDF Print E-mail
Programming - SQL
Written by Rafael Victoria-Pereira   
Wednesday, 17 August 2016 00:00

This article continues the date-related functions discussion, introducing a few more simple but extremely useful SQL functions: DAYOFWEEK, WEEK, QUARTER, DAYOFYEAR, and MIDNIGHT_SECONDS. Do you have time for some date fun?

rafael victoria preiraWritten by Rafael Victória-Pereira

Let me start with a quick flashback: an RPG Academy TechTip published in October 2015, explaining how to create an RPG function to calculate the day of the week of a given date stirred things up quite a bit. Some readers complained this kind of function was totally unnecessary, because SQL is better equipped to do this type of thing and so on. My reply was that I’d get to a point in the SQL 101 series in which I’d cover the “SQL version” of that particular function, named Clc_DayOfWeek.

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 August 2016 15:02
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Practical RPG: Managing Copy Files PDF Print E-mail
Programming - RPG
Written by Joe Pluta   
Wednesday, 03 August 2016 00:00

The more you use APIs, the more you need copy files, and this article shows you how to manage them.

joe plutaWritten by Joe Pluta

One of the greatest strengths of the IBM i is its ever-expanding collection of APIs. These APIs provide everything from system function access to database access to programming to utility functions used by other functions. Pretty much anything you can do from a command line or a menu you can do from an API, which allows you to embed those features into your ILE programs. However, in order to access all of those functions, you need to define the interface to each one, and that is best done through the use of copy files. The problem is that copy files can quickly get out of hand; this article presents a framework to keep them under control.

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 August 2016 00:00
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RPG Academy: Write Better Code — Choosing Appropriate Names for Variables, Procedures, and Functions PDF Print E-mail
Programming - RPG
Written by Rafael Victoria-Pereira   
Wednesday, 03 August 2016 00:00

While the previous two TechTips focused on the prefixes for different types of variables, this one is about the name itself. Here I explain why using simple names is of paramount importance to writing better code.

rafael victoria preiraWritten by Rafael Victória-Pereira

Choosing appropriate names for variables is as critical as correctly using the prefixes. Check out the previous two TechTips (1 and 2) for a quick refresh on prefixes. For instance, W_DF is not very informative, but W_DeliveryFee or W_Delivery_Fee is. Choosing appropriate, meaningful names for variables makes your code more efficient in the sense that you’ll waste less time understanding and maintaining it later.

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 August 2016 00:00
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SQL 101: Date-Related Functions, Part 2—Time-Saving Functions PDF Print E-mail
Programming - SQL
Written by Rafael Victoria-Pereira   
Wednesday, 20 July 2016 00:00

The functions discussed in this article won’t save time in the literal sense; mankind has yet to invent a time machine. However, these functions will surely cut down on the time it takes an RPG programmer to perform complicated “date math.”

rafael victoria preiraWritten by Rafael Victória-Pereira

As I mentioned in the previous article, there’s no BIF to return the day of the week, for instance. SQL provides several simple-to-use scalar functions that do that and more, as you’ll see later in this article.

 

Before getting to that, let me take a moment to address some readers’ remarks regarding the functions I presented in the previous article.

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 July 2016 00:00
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Practical RPG: Processing an IFS Directory PDF Print E-mail
Programming - RPG
Written by Joe Pluta   
Wednesday, 06 July 2016 00:00

The IFS is an integral part of the today's modern IT infrastructure; this article shows you how to use it as a powerful data input device.

joe plutaWritten by Joe Pluta

When the IFS was first introduced, it seemed to be almost an afterthought designed primarily to support UNIX and Java development. Sure, you could map drives to it, but the support wasn't exactly robust and you were actually better off using FTP if you wanted to drop something into an IFS folder. Fast-forward to today's IBM i, and the IFS can be easily accessed from just about anywhere, Windows to Linux, making it a simple way for people to communicate with the system using something other than a green-screen.

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 06 July 2016 00:00
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RPG Academy: Write Better Code—A Few More Naming Variables Guidelines PDF Print E-mail
Programming - RPG
Written by Rafael Victoria-Pereira   
Wednesday, 06 July 2016 00:00

It’s time to discuss a few more variable prefixes and a technique you can resort to when you’re forced by the circumstances to use indicators, namely when you manipulate display and printer files.

rafael victoria preiraWritten by Rafael Victória-Pereira

The last installment of this series covered parameter and work variable prefixes, which are arguably the most-used variables in a typical RPG program. However, I recommend taking a few more steps and using separate variables for key fields and constants as well. Keep reading to find out why.

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 06 July 2016 00:00
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