Here's an old computer science joke: What's the difference between hardware and software? If you use hardware long enough, it breaks. If you use software long enough, it works. The truth behind that is the reason that so much decades-old COBOL code is out there still driving crucial applications and banks and other huge companies. Many attempts to replace COBOL applications flopped in the 1980s and '90s, and we're stuck with them for the foreseeable future -- but the Baby Boomers who wrote all that code are now retiring en masse. So if you want a successful IT career, you should probably learn COBOL.