I had a talk today with Make Technologies, I’ve known them a long time and I have some shares. They’re doing a lot of work on legacy conversion, both methodology and technology; helping people who have mission-critical applications that they want to move to modern infrastructure, specifically J2EE. I knew that this was an interesting space (even post-Y2K) but I was flabbergasted when Mike Hagerman (Make’s CEO) told me two numbers: There are five billion new lines of COBOL getting created every year, and there are (wait for it) 220 billion lines of COBOL in production. (Holy cow, now that I think about it, I bet I wrote ten or twenty thousand of them). Mike got the numbers from Gartner. That’s... scary.