IBM Watson Code Assistant to translate COBOL to Java

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IBM is expanding the capabilities of its generative AI-based Watson Code Assistant to include COBOL code translation into Java.

he new product, dubbed Watsonx Code Assistant for Z, will use Watsonx.ai’s code foundational model to generate new Java code to run on the Z operating system. The introduction of the new capability is expected to counter the dwindling numbers of COBOL-proficient developers and challenges faced in the accelerated development of applications for mainframe systems.

Watsonx Code Assistant for Z will feature automated code refactoring capabilities that can extract business services from a monolithic COBOL application. Code refactoring is the process of converting code into a new programming language without changing its nature, behavior, or output.

Developers will use the ADDI tool to understand app dependencies, generate metadata. Another IBM tool will then extract the COBOL code, and convert it to Java.

Watsonx Code Assistant prototype analyzes COBOL and data structures, compares Java output with COBOL before deploying, and makes Java classes.

The sources for this piece include an article in InfoWorld.

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