IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe - January/February 2018 - SE10
ARTICLE: APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT
Increase Demand for
he rapidly changing marketplace requires nimble developers
to meet evolving customer demand and maintain market
share. Developers are building innovative applications using
the latest languages.
A recent survey by IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe edition
found that 32 percent of respondents spend 30 to 60 percent
of their IT budget on application development or maintenance.
Another 17 percent spend 15 to 30 percent of their budget for
those essential tasks, while 9 percent spend more than 60 percent
to keep up with demand. (See "Magazine Reader Survey Reveals
Top Concerns Among Mainframe Users," bit.ly/2z60HPq.)
Developers rely on scalable architecture like IBM Z* and
modern tools to enable those applications to reach the market.
With the introduction of IBM LinuxONE*, clients serving cloud
deployments and mobile apps have a dedicated Linux* platform
with hardware, software and services.
"It's Linux but more flexible, scalable and secure," notes Karen
Hunt, IBM Z director of offering management, development
and support for compilers and enterprise products. (See "IBM
z Systems Supports Modern Languages, Tools, Optimization and
Application development has spurred the creation of many
programming languages. Java*, one of the most popular, is a
workhorse when it comes to solving business problems. With
Java on Z, "clients have the freedom to solve business problems
with the tools they think are best and most appropriate," says
Marcel Mitran, IBM Distinguished Engineer and CTO of LinuxONE.
(See "Java on z Systems Delivers Portability, Security and Other
Java is enabled for batch and online transaction processing
in traditional data-serving and transaction processing
environments such as CICS*, Db2*, IMS*
and WebSphere*. Newer workloads in
analytics, cognitive and cloud are written
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in Java, such as IBM zAware, IBM Machine Learning for z/OS*
and Apache Spark. A 2016 survey of 95 Z clients found that 68
percent use Java. More than 80 percent of these users find Java
production to be successful or very successful.
More recent languages, such as Go and Swift, are also
supported by Z. Part of the open-source universe, Go is enabling
applications such as IBM Blockchain. In addition, Go allows
developers to build mobile apps, giving them a scalable platform
that can handle demand spikes with ease.
IBM has worked to develop Swift as a server-side language.
By doing so, IBM has enabled developers to do back-end
programming as well as front-end development using a single
language. "By putting Swift on the mainframe, we're lowering
the barrier to entry for programming on the back end and giving
customers the option to have a single language from device level
to the system of record," Hunt says.
The runtime environment, where an application is run, tested
and deployed, is a key part of application development.
Linux, is now enabled for Z. Developers can use a common
and server-side applications. As both server and client can
begin communications in real time using Node.js, it's a good
environment for live chat, data streaming, APIs that sit on object
databases and queued inputs.
Recognizing the growing use of Node.js, IBM introduced IBM
SDK for Node.js on z/OS in 2017. IBM SDK is based on Node.js V6
and runs on z/OS V2.2 and V2.3. It also includes a C/C++ compiler.
IBM SDK for Node.js lets users co-locate Node.js applications
with applications and data assets on IBM Z. This co-location
reduces response time for data access and boosts transaction
processing. (See "IBM SDK for Node.js -
z/OS Offers Co-Location and Technology