Monday, November 13, 2006

Review: Cobol (first quiz)

I took the first Brainbench refresher quiz Friday (Nov. 10) on COBOL II and scored in the 98 percentile. The quiz has 20 questions. For the refresher quiz, there is considerable time.

Just a few topics came up. I won't give away any test material, but I'll continue some review topics.

One idea is that the EVALUATE and WHEN structure can execute only one WHEN clause. It then stops. So the order of the clauses matters if more than one can be true (Murach p 198). This structure is often simpler and more elegant than the equivalent "Nested IF" structure. Professional consultants on contracts would probably be expected to code with this technique when possible.

If you want a program to abend automatically if it goes out of range on an array, you should use the SSRANGE compiler option.

It is common in replication programming or in COBOL programs that access older files with bit coded fields (life CFO masters in life insurance) to access specific fields with a starting position (colon :) character count.

COMP-1 (single precision floating point, 4 bytes) and COMP-2 (double precision floating point) do not have picture clauses.

The maximum size of an 01 level in COBOL II is 16777215

A good link for COBOL interview questions is here.

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