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<p>A case study examines how fourth-generation languages do well and how they come up short compared to their predecessors. Two fourth-generation tools dBase III and PC/Focus were used, and a solution in Cobol was developed to use as a benchmark for third-generation-language performance. For each solution, development effort, code size, and performance characteristics were examined. It was found that even though the code sizes were smaller with both fourth-generation tools, Cobol was clearly superior in performance. It took longer to develop the solution in Cobol than in dBase III but less time than in PC/Focus.</p>
fourth-generation software development; fourth-generation languages; fourth-generation tools; dBase III; PC/Focus; Cobol; benchmark; third-generation-language performance; development effort; code size; performance characteristics; high level languages; software engineering

P. J. Jalics and S. K. Misra, "Third-Generation Versus Fourth-Generation Software Development," in IEEE Software, vol. 5, no. , pp. 8-14, 1988.
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