Modernization Lessons: FTP & the Mainframe

Clayton Neff Consulting, Java, Problem Solving, Programming, Spring Batch, Technology Snapshot Leave a Comment

One of my most recent projects involved helping a client move many decades of code from a mainframe environment to a distributed Java web environment. The client had engaged another company to actually transform the mainframe code to Java, and our team was tasked with making it all actually work.

One of the major areas we had to deal with was the transition of all of the batch processes. Of course, Spring Batch came to our rescue for most of the work, and was an easy choice as we were already using Spring Boot to wrapper the converted applications.

The most challenging part of the entire project was that the client did not want to move everything at once in a Big Bang, but rather a few programs as a time. This meant that some programs would be running in the Java environment while others remained on the mainframe.

In this blog, I discuss three data challenges we encountered in the transition of an enterprise mainframe to Java web application with Spring Batch, how we overcame them, and tips to keep in mind going forward when in similar migration situations.



Web Development Business

Programming Ponderings

Ryan LaRue Consulting, Opinion, Programming 1 Comment

Editor’s Note: After nearly 20 years in software development, Ryan LaRue introduces three lessons he has learned in his programming career with takeaways that apply to all levels of experience.

Open Door Policy
One of the reasons I’ve always loved Software Development is its open door policy to new entrants. No MBA, PhD or, heck, degree required.

If you’re smart, like to solve problems, and get things done, then you will be welcomed with open arms.

At a recent client, one of the company’s permanent developers was, in her near-term past, a police officer. At some point, she decided she didn’t want that lifestyle anymore and worked her way into a nice position with a company that valued her work ethic and programming skills….



A Conversation About Conversations

David Pitt JavaScript, Keyhole Creations, Mobile, Node.js, React, Technology Snapshot Leave a Comment

We created a platform that supports developing a “conversational” type application through SMS. The user experience between a user and an SMS application can be thought of as a conversation. A user texts a question or topic, and a reply is returned, then another question and reply is performed until a desired result is accomplished.

Now, this is not a universal user experience, but for many use cases it can provide an easy to deliver users functionality quickly and conveniently. There is no need to install or download apps, or pop open a browser and type in a URL; just have a conversation through your texting app.

In this blog: Why conversational applications are handy, examples of conversational applications we have created, and a walkthrough of the application architecture used to develop those SMS applications. Includes how to make texting a richer experience, state, and session handling insights.



React NowPlaying Educational Application

Lauren Fournier AngularJS, Company News, JavaScript, Keyhole Creations, React, Single-Page Application, Technology Snapshot Leave a Comment

We at Keyhole have been helping our clients adopt JavaScript-based single-page applications for over five years. We have been impressed with the adoption and advancement of the ever-changing JavaScript ecosystem.

React is a JavaScript technology that our teams enjoy working with. However, React differs from the other frameworks we’ve worked with in a handful of ways.

The best way to learn a new technology is to actually do something with it, as opposed to simply reading about it. So, we created a tangible React learning application to help our team get up-to-speed. The application repository has now been released publicly to help others learn.

Pull down the repo & try out React!



Creating a Slack Bot

Brice McIver JavaScript, Node.js, Technology Snapshot Leave a Comment

If you have ever worked on a team project, then you’ve needed some way to communicate with your team. For a very small team with all of its members based in one place, face-to-face communication might be your go-to method of handling project conversations.

However, once your project size progresses past that point, there’s a good chance that you’ll at least evaluate using a collaborative software package to help manage your project. Slack is a popular option for this.

In this blog, I’ll show the basic steps you can take to integrate Slack with your existing tools and workflows. In particular, we will set up Slack for incoming webhooks and event subscriptions, showing how to program a Slack bot to say personalized “Welcome to the channel” and a “Goodbye” messages.

Let’s get started…