In the realm of technology, where innovation moves ahead at breakneck speeds, there exists the persistent challenge of companies relying on old software systems. In fact, US businesses waste $1.8 trillion annually due to obsolete technology.
This is where Heirloom Computing comes in. The award-winning US-based mainframe modernization provider is on a mission to help companies escape their legacy system stranglehold and move to an agile cloud solution. Since partnering with Dreamix, Heirloom has developed several critical migration tools, significantly expanded its service offering, and reduced expenses thanks to new proprietary software solutions.
Heirloom computing: modernization pioneers
Heirloom Computing was founded in California, United States. Its inception was driven by a clear-cut mission: to untangle the complexities a business encounters when trying to move on from outdated software systems.
The company’s high-speed, low-risk approach to mainframe migration quickly gained traction in the industry. In 2023, Heirloom was named a Leader in the ISG Provider Lens™ Mainframe Services & Solutions Quadrant Report – a designation given to service providers with industry-leading impact and strength for innovation.
Heirloom Computing has delivered mainframe to cloud migrations for some of the world’s top companies. Today, Heirloom Computing is recgonized as the leading multi-cloud solution provider, partnering with select Global Systems Integrators and hyperscalers to facilitate legacy modernization for its clients.
Heirloom Computing’s transformation strategy revolves around transpiler-centric migration that puts the client in complete control of their modernization journey. As the company’s COBOL business expanded, they identified an opportunity to meet the needs of more clients by enhancing integration with their JES/JCL engine for batch processing and the development of a next-generation transpiler for refactoring PL/1 applications to Java.
Such pioneering software upgrades, however, require a lot of technical manpower and niche expertise – more than Heirloom’s in-house team could offer at the time. They recognized they needed external help in order to maximize their service offering.
The Dreamix solution
Heirloom wanted to go with a Bulgaria-based company because of their high opinion of the region’s software providers. They picked Dreamix based on their demonstrated modernization expertise, world-class technical ability, and team-oriented culture.
Graham Cunningham, Heirloom Computing’s CTO, sums up the partnership, saying:
Dreamix is our strategic near-shore software development partner. They are incredibly easy to work with and provide us with an unmatched software engineering capability. Their teams have been instrumental to Heirloom’s growth & success.”
The first thing the team started to work on was a compiler, refactoring COBOL – a programming language dating back to 1959 – into modernized object-oriented Java that can be deployed to any cloud. Dreamix also got to work integrating Heirloom’s JES/JCL batch processing engine into the solution stack.
At the same time, a combined team worked on creating a different compiler from scratch – one that could transpile PL/I code into Java source. The technology stack used by Dreamix for these two projects was very similar:
- Java serves as the main language for both transpilers, providing a foundation for their core logic.
- ANTLR4 was used to create parsers and lexers for both languages, enabling efficient parsing of COBOL and PL/I source code for subsequent compilation
- Java was employed as the common runtime environment for both transpilers.
- ReactJS helped develop an intuitive, user-friendly user-interface for managing JCL jobs
Dreamix also co-developed other innovative high-value components, including a Python-based mainframe workload analyzer called Probe, and a multi-threaded high-performance mainframe-compatible SORT utility in Java called h/SORT.
The ongoing partnership between Dreamix and Heirloom Computing has been beneficial for both parties, in more ways than one. Both companies share a commitment to software innovation and bringing technological improvement to the world. We at Dreamix are proud to be part of such a collaboration and look forward to continuing to deliver value to our partner.