re: What was your first 'big' programming project? VIEW POST

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Nothing 'big' in my personal space, but at work, back in '89, job #1 was writing the system software for a distributed, MS-DOS & OS/2 based telephone banking platform. Front-end was multiple racks of custom hardware: pairs of networked x86 CPU boards and our proprietary speech recognition/telephone interface cards - running MS-DOS on the x86, these handled user interaction by voice or DTMF. Middleware was written on OS/2 by a team in Belfast, to provide a gateway into the bank's mainframes (hence OS/2 apparently), and manage the front-end configurations. Back end was on the bank's IBM CICS system. In addition we held shared files on a Netware server which also provided network boot for the front ends. All networking was IPX/SPX.

15 person-years of effort went into this thing, and we installed the platform into a <popular Scottish bank>'s data centre around '92. Their data centre was awesome - several football fields of mainframes, many varieties (IBM, Stratos, ICL, ...), follow lighting, halon fire protection, copper bus bars along the wall for low voltage power.. cool stuff :)

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