The very nature of our tax collection system means don’t touch, don’t change. Just updating Perl in our Red Hat Enterprise Linux system caused something to break.
Add that fragility to the fact that our tax collection system went from being an 8 AM – 4PM by five day a week system to a twenty-four hour by seven day a week system — because of on line bill payments — and you can appreciate there is little room to allow things to go wrong. For example, you cannot just change the fiscal year without taking on line bill payments into account. So. we have to synchronize changing the fiscal year with the apache web server.
The fiscal year change program could be written in Informix 4GL, but why not try writing it in Python? It seems nothing will ever move forward if new technologies ae not introduced, like Python. Python’s informixdb module is well written and will fill in well for 4GL. The job to be done is a small enough task to warrant Python’s introduction.
Just make sure informixdb is installed on the production system :-).