MacKinney Systems, Inc.

SimpList is a productivity tool that vastly improves the traditional ISPF mainframe interface. Instead of constantly moving between many different panels and vendor products, tasks are completed in one location using simple point-and-shoot selection. Remembering and re-keying object names is a thing of the past, and selecting objects and executing commands is as easy as clicking a mouse. As a mainframe application, the look and feel of SimpList is immediately understood by ISPF users. At the same time, the point-and-shoot workstation concepts used by SimpList are instantly recognized by PC users. For example:

  • Thousands of objects can be bookmarked in lists of favorites so they never have to be remembered or retyped.
  • Any bookmarked object can be selected for any function without having to navigate to different ISPF options.
  • A mouse can be used to perform every type of action; e.g. scrolling, executing commands, selecting objects (etc).
  • Data set names appearing anywhere on any panel can be used as hyperlinks to open the data set for any function.

SimpList combines the power of the mainframe with easy-to-use PC/workstation concepts to create an environment where productivity is unsurpassed. The massive reduction in keystrokes, navigation time, and system interaction time makes SimpList a must-have product for every mainframe site.

 

What sets SimpList apart from other productivity tools

The feature-rich and highly intuitive SimpList interface offers power and functionality beyond anything found in other productivity tools. For example:

Ease of use
No interference with regular ISPF
The most powerful point-and-shoot facility
The most powerful labeling facility
Much more than just a data set organizer
Permanently stores more than 2,500 object names, patterns, and commands
Allows 'surfing the mainframe'
Supports cross-platform development
Low cost
Integration

 

Ease of use
SimpList has an extremely intuitive point-and-shoot interface that requires no cryptic commands and no previous knowledge of ISPF menus. All SimpList panels have field-level-help and context sensitive tutorials, to make them extremely easy to learn and use with no required formal training.

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No interference with regular ISPF
SimpList requires no customization to any existing ISPF panels, and does not interfere with or change the use of regular ISPF in any way. Instead, SimpList has its own unique set of stand-alone panels that users transition to as their time and schedules permit.

 

The most powerful point-and-shoot facility
SimpList is the only product on the market that can do all of the following:

  • Supports point-and-shoot selection of data set names shown anywhere on a panel, including those in ISPF messages.
  • Supports point-and-shoot selection of newly entered names; i.e. names that don't exist in the ISPF screen buffer.
  • Supports point-and-shoot selection of members whose names appear in other members; e.g. programs and copybooks called by other programs (etc). This works even if the calling and called members exist in different libraries.
  • Supports both nested and newly started sessions. For example, entering ED and pointing the cursor at an object name edits the object in a nested session (i.e. one that runs on top of the current session), while EDS edits the object in a newly started session (i.e. one that supports swapping between the original and newly started session).

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The most powerful labeling facility
Some productivity tools allow assigning objects 'alias'. This allows opening objects by using the alias name instead of the object name. For example, 'USER01.DEVELOP.CNT' is given an alias called DEVCNTL or JCL or just J (etc). In SimpList terminology an alias is called a 'label', SimpList differentiates itself from other productivity tools in several major ways:

  1. SimpList imposes no limit on the number of assigned alias names. 
  2. SimpList is the only productivity tool allowing alias names assigned to any type of object; e.g. data sets, BookManager bookshelves, DB2 tables, IMS databases, PC/workstation files, VSAM files (etc).
  3. SimpList is the only productivity tool allowing labeled objects to include any combination of wild cards and/or symbolics.
  4. SimpList is the only productivity tool allowing a list of labels to browse, edit, print or view from any command line, anywhere in ISPF. For example, open a list of labels in a standard ISPF edit session and add, updat or delete labels using regular ISPF edit commands.

 

Much more than just a data set organizer
Some productivity tools only support data sets. In contrast, SimpList supports many additional objects including BookManager Bookshelves and Books, DB2 tables, DB2 commands, Generation Data Groups, IMS databases, IMS commands, ISPF commands, PC/workstation files, PC/workstation commands, TSO commands, Unix files, VSAM files, Web sites, and much more. During every step of a process, SimpList adds many functions and enhancements that are not available in regular ISPF or in any other productivity tool.

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Permanently stores more than 2,500 object names, patterns, and commands
Unlike other productivity tools, each SimpList user can permanently store more than two and a half thousand object names. Each object (not just data sets) can include system and user-defined symbolics. Optional comments can be entered after any object. Wild cards can be used in objects to generate unlimited lists of additional objects. Different types of objects can be categorized and grouped in different lists, e.g. JCL data sets grouped in one list and DB2 tables grouped in another list (etc). Any list can be opened from any ISPF command line. If the location of an object is forgotten, use FIND to search every list for any part of an object name or comment. Labels can be used to select objects from any ISPF command line.

 

Allows 'surfing the mainframe''
SimpList heavily exploits the use of point-and-shoot fields and host emulation software to allow each user to 'surf' through all SimpList panels using a mouse. Scrolling, executing commands, navigating tutorials (etc) can all be accomplished by simply clicking a mouse.

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Supports cross-platform development
SimpList has extensive cross-platform support, allowing mainframe files to be viewed, edited, printed (etc) on a PC/workstation, and PC/workstation files to be viewed, edited, printed (etc) on a mainframe. If a selected file has a proprietary PC/workstation format (such as a Word document or PDF file etc), the selected file opens in the appropriate application on the PC/workstation.

If a PC/workstation file has a wild card in the name, a list of all files matching the pattern displays on the mainframe. From the list, files can be selected for many different functions including transfer to or from a mainframe and PC/workstation.

In addition to files, many other types of PC/workstation objects are supported. This includes PC/workstation commands executed in a command window (e.g. IPCONFIG), commands executed at a Run prompt (e.g. WINVER), applications that run on a PC/workstation (e.g. Notepad), web sites (e.g. HTTP and HTTPS), and much more.

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Low cost
SimpList is licensed by physical CPU serial number at a flat annual cost. There are no limits on the number of concurrent users and no additional charges for installing on or upgrading to bigger/faster mainframes. Because of the extremely low and attractive pricing, return on investment usually occurs with a single user.

 

Integration
The SimpList workbench is a fully-integrated environment where multiple objects can be selected for multiple functions. For example, SimpList removes the need to navigate between all of the following options:


-ISPF option 1 (browse/view)
-ISPF option 2 (edit)
-ISPF option 3.1 (library compress, delete, rename etc)
-ISPF option 3.2 (data set allocate, delete, rename etc)
-ISPF option 3.3 (copy/move)
-ISPF option 3.4 (DSLIST)
-ISPF option 3.5 (reset statistics)
-ISPF option 3.6 (hardcopy print)
-ISPF option 3.7.2 (file transfer)
-ISPF option 3.14 (search)
-ISPF option 6 (TSO command)
-ISPF option 11 (object/action workplace)


In addition to the above, SimpList interfaces with tools and utilities such as AMBLIST, BookManager, DB2, DSNTIAUL, HSM, IMS, SuperC, the ISPF Workstation Agent, and many different third-party vendor products; e.g. products that handle DB2 tables, IMS databases, VSAM files, and more. For example, if a DB2 table is selected for edit, SimpList automatically launches whichever third-party vendor product is used at the site for editing DB2 tables.

User Defined Functions further extend the capabilities of SimpList, allowing it to seamlessly interface with site-specific objects and products such as change management utilities and in-house tools and procedures.

By eliminating the need to navigate between many different tools and utilities, SimpList creates an enormously productive environment where tasks are completed far more quickly using much less effort.