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David Mount Owner, texAS400 Computer Consulting

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Presentation on theme: "David Mount Owner, texAS400 Computer Consulting"— Presentation transcript:

1 David Mount Owner, texAS400 Computer Consulting

2  Normal presenter at MMSA is an expert on the subject matter  I was lucky winner of MMSA trip to Common Conference May 6-9, 2012 in Anaheim, CA at the Disneyland Resort  Cost of a conference is around $1,300  My first Common Conference  4 days of presentations  A dozen or so concurrent presentations  Some presentations in ballrooms, some in small classrooms  Vendor exhibition hall with all the usual suspects  Free lunch (cocktail party food) in exhibition hall as a way to see vendors and mingle with attendees  Final evening included an outdoor Bar-B-Q with C&W band  Middle aged geeks everywhere  Note – about 35 slides in this presentation  Will try to demo the Wikis and SoapUI

3  Spend 4 days with AS/400 users and experts  See presentations on topics near and dear to you  See presentations on topics that you have a casual curiosity about (but no time to learn about)  Like going to 20 MMSA meetings in a row (but in a good way)  For me, the worst presentation usually has a couple of ideas that make it worth hearing  Most of these presentations have lots of really good information  Get to see the movers and shakers of the AS/400 world

4  In Grand Ballroom  About 2 hours  Common President, Pete Massiello  Welcome presentation by Pete  Pete is in NY area  Slide presentation by IBM  Presentation by Disney  One hour business motivational speech  Topic was “why Disney is successful”

5  Mentioned Often  php  Functions that use Java objects  Open source (php and Java)  IBM i  Mobile Apps  “Modernize” your system  Aaron Bartell and Scott Klement Not mentioned  EGL  Cobol

6  Scott Klement  Jon Paris and Susan Ganter (Partner400)  Richard J Schoen (RJS Software)  David Gibbs (Host of  Trevor Perry (Former president of MMSA)  Charles Guarino (Central Park Data Systems)  Bruce Vining (API expert and author)

7  Paul Tuohy’s presentation to MMSA  He referred to OPO rather than OOP  Other People’s Objects vs Object Oriented Programming  I’ve spent 12 years avoiding Java  ILE gives up ability to call Java objects  Opens door to using Open Source code  for Excel Spreadsheets  JDBC drivers to talk to databases  Jasper reports to mimic Crystal Reports  Ruby on Rails

8  Accessing IFS from RPG  Consuming Web Services  Excel Spreadsheets  External Databases  RPG Does TCP/IP  RPG User Defined Functions

9  How to use API’s to:  Open IFS file  Read IFS file  Write to IFS file  Get directory of IFS folder  Check for object

10  Most exciting concept at conference for me  More on this later  Free access to Scott’s HTTPAPI program  Use RPG to retrieve information using web services  UPS Tracking Info program included (requires free UPS user ID from UPS web site)  At Klement Sausage, green screen login screen includes the 5 day weather forecast  SOAPUI overview  Free tool for working with WSDL and SOAP  A “key to the kingdom” of Web Services

11  Examples of how to create Excel spreadsheets using RPG  Fairly long (40 slide) presentation on using  Not related to apache server  This topic also covered in Partner400 (Jon Paris and Susan Ganter) presentation at MMSA  Another example of using ILE to call Java objects (OPO – other people’s objects)

12  Database manufacturers make drivers for Java  JDBC connection  Oracle, MY SQL, Microsoft SQL  JDBCR4 – RPG wrapper to call JDBC  Includes instructions for installing the Java.jar which has the JDBC drivers  39 slides including samples of how to use JDBCR4 to insert, select, update and delete records

13  41 slides on how to use OS/400 API’s to create socket connections  Read and Write to almost any device that can make a socket connection  Scott uses it to program the display sign in front of the Klement Sausage Factory

14 Presented by IBM’r Jesse Gorzinski  It’s free, no strings attached.  Fully supported by IBM Service. –User forum on Web is monitored by IBM developers.  Lets any Java app, anywhere on your LAN, –Access and exploit your IBM i resources.  Thoroughly documented on the Web.  In use by IBM and customers since V4R2 (1998). –Used under-the-covers in many other IBM products.

15  Jasper Reports  Open source, java equivalent to Crystal Reports  “Modernize” your reports  Green bar print outs as old fashioned as green screen  PC Based IDE with graphic designer  A lot of work but very attractive reports  Various distribution options:  PDF  HTML  Text  RTF (Rich Text Format)

16  Another open source, java option  Ruby is an open source, object oriented language  Similar to Perl, Smalltalk, Python  Ruby on Rails (sometimes called Rails) is a web application framework of Ruby  Groupon and Hulu are Rails applications  Tons of open source and templates  About 1/3 as popular as php  Good example of something I was interested in but don’t have time to learn (yet)

17  Bruce Vining – former IBM’r who wrote many of the API’s  Author of API book  changed  250 changed  changed

18  V5R4  Message Watch  A little like reply list entries  STRWCH, ENDWCH, WRKWCH  Includes sample code for exit programs

19  V6  Call Job Interrupt Program (QWCJBITP)  Allows you to run an exit program in the initial thread of another job  See what’s in the QTEMP library  Update objects such as a *DTAARA in QTEMP  Basically run whatever the current caller of the API is authorized to  Can be very dangerous when in the wrong hands woo-hoo!

20  User Customized Options for WRKOUTQ, WRKSPLF  Lets you define options for WRKSPLF similar to the way you add user options to PDM  You could make option “EM” to the spool file

21  Older but clever tips and techniques  Using prestart jobs to run monitor type jobs  User cannot end job  They can end it but it starts up again  Use Database trigger to populate last date and time changed  Also mentioned a trick to write a message and then read it as a way of determining program that changes data  See slide 28

22  Includes short overview of journaling  Random WRKSPLF fun fact  V5R4 adds filter to select by date range  Update data area with each step of nightly job  If job abends, data area has last successful step  Create QSYSMSG message queue  Only serious messages get written to QSYSMSG  Lots more clever tips

23  Wiki comes from Hawaiian word for fast  Web pages that can be updated by users  Everyone knows what Wikipedia is  Pages can be changed by users  Audit trails are kept and changes can be reversed  Wikipedia runs a php application “MediaWiki”  Open source  Lots of forums  A bit complicated  Simple enough that I could do it

24  Drew works for an Alaskan Railroad  His company is not Sarbanes Oxley compliant  He recognized that their company documentation was in hard copy in a storage room  Inaccessible and obsolete  He replaced the company documentation with MediaWiki  Users enter and modify documentation constantly  Software allows users to upload documents and images  Written in php  Could run it on your AS/400, PC (WAMP or LAMP)

25  More on MediaWiki  It uses a markup language that it very simple ▪ = Heading 1 = ▪ == Heading 2 == ▪ === Heading 3 === ▪ Automatically builds clickable table of contents at top of page ▪ [[ links to another wiki page ]] ▪ [[http:// links to internet page ]] ▪ Lots of other simple formatting rules ▪ Also supports html  Go to to see the one running on my

26  Wiki on a Stick  Very small  The idea is that you can keep all of your info on a USB flash drive  It is really just an updatable html document  I used it for 3 days  It self destructed – it cleared the document

27  I am using ZimWiki  It is really just a note taker  Even simpler formatting rules  Not intended as a group product ▪ It’s for me only  I am creating a knowledge base so I can be replaced by a machine ▪ Phone #’s ▪ AS/400 tips ▪ Copy and paste articles and source code ▪ Projects I’m working on ▪ Testing tips (use Invoice # 5564 to test) ▪ Easy to search complete database ▪ Working well for me to organize information especially when I an interrupted

28  My thought is that the AS/400 is capable of doing almost all “modern” things but often requires bolt-on software  Consume web services with Klement’s HTTPAPI  Parse XML with XML-SAX  Run php with free Zend software  Things to consider:  Php server with open source applications like MediaWiki, help desk software (Mantis400 or osTicket), or SugarCRM  Consume web services – I’ve added Scott Klements UPS Tracking application to one of my clients system in 4 hours  Magento Web Services  Mobile Apps – I’ve written a demo mobile app for Order Entry  Web development – I’ve written a demo shopping cart application that included learning why CSS is so cool

29  Help start a movement to re-re-re-rename the i  i sounds like an Apple product  Android OS is named ios  Can’t be googled  Hated by everyone I’ve ever met  Encourages people to believe that AS/400 is no longer produced  In fact, the AS/400 is no longer produced  AS/400 Version 7.1  AS/400 Generation 2012  Trevor Perry has URL  Maybe start a site

30  Select some high profile reports and “modernize” them  For example ▪ Take daily sales report ▪ Rewrite as a pretty report (use AFPDS or Jasper or Excel) ▪ Convert it to pdf and it to CFO every morning ▪ Or rewrite it to output to a static html file so CFO can view the report online  Use CGIDEV2 or php to rewrite a screen or two as a browser page  You do not need to convert everything, only a few things

31  Add things to your system that will make upper management afraid to migrate away  “you mean your PC system doesn’t even include the 5 day forecast on the login screen?!?”

32  As a Common attendee, I have a user ID to download presentations from the conference I attended  I could see topics from previous conferences but could not download them  Many of the presentations are re-runs  I contacted Common to see if it was OK to share the downloads with MMSA  They had never been asked about this  They said that they were merely providing access to the presentations and that I could do whatever I liked with the material. Copyright issues were up to me.  I took the view that almost all of the presenters would be flattered.  I did not include Partner400 presentations since Jon and Susan make a living out of their presentations.  Go to  Click on last link on left side of home page labeled MMSA  Download about 78mb that includes 44 pdf’s

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