What is CICS?

Here's an important thing to remember about big businesses: when downtime occurs, it impacts them in a big way. Downtime is, quite simply, an absolute disaster. And when we talk about "big business" we're not just talking about your run-of-the-mill corporation, either. We're talking about Fortune 500 -- the largest corporations in the world. Now, because they cannot afford downtime, these mega corporations require "mission-critical" transaction systems to run on powerful mainframes. This is where Customer Information Control System (CICS) comes in. Many of these companies -- up to 90 per cent of the world's Fortune 500 companies, it has been estimated -- use CICS for their rapid, high-volume online processing needs, with the help of terminal emulation software to access the CICS servers.

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What is a Thin Client?

A thin client is a type of computer or piece of software that relies on another more powerful computer to do most of its work. Connected to a network, the thin client computer or software provides an interface through which the user communicates with a network server computer. Because the thin computer is not powerful, it is virtually useless on its own; however, when connected to a centralised network server computer, it is capable of displaying all the information that a user requires. Powerful mainframe computers, for example, can be accessed through thin client terminal emulation.

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What is Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID)?

Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) refers to a type of system that uses radio waves to wirelessly transmit data. It falls into the same "automatic identification technology" category as the bar codes you'll find on supermarket products and the magnetic strips you'll find on the back of credit cards. Just like a bar code or magnetic strip needs to be scanned in order to get the required information, an RFID device must be scanned to retrieve information as well. With the help of terminal emulation software, RFID systems are able to access powerful host computers while "out in the field".

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5 Reasons Mainframes are Here to Stay

For decades now, many in the computing industry have been sounding the death knell of the mainframe. The emergence of cloud computing has been seen as a reason that mainframes won't survive much further into the 21st century. But just like email hasn't spelt the death of snail mail, cloud computing most certainly hasn't meant the death of the mainframe. Terminal emulation software continues to be made in order to access mainframes from modern computers. And so, in this article, we look at six reasons why the mainframe is here to stay.

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