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Back in the late 70's I once knew someone who knew someone who knew someone, who shall remain nameless, who was a fairly senior programmer for a large bank. On certain occasions, this person was able to bring home thick printouts of the actual COBOL code that ran in the bank's mainframes. Probably one of my first exposures to source code. The lines would alternate between a green and white paper color. Along both the left and right edges were rows of holes, needed by the printer mechanism. The code itself was highly highly verbose plus was probably >50% comments, both inline and in section delimiting blocks. I later got into BASIC programming myself as my first language, then 6502 Assembly, then C. Though I appreciate Java's strengths, I totally understand why some folks call Java the New COBOL: it's pretty verbose, full of ritual, and it's used everywhere now in large corporations and government. (Not sure if used in banks heavily, but would not be surprised. Though I know COBOL is still running in many banks as well.)

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