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December 8, 2013: Volume 15, Number 49|
November 30, 2013: Volume 15, Number 48
November 23, 2013: Volume 15, Number 47
November 16, 2013: Volume 15, Number 46
November 9, 2013: Volume 15, Number 45
November 2, 2013: Volume 15, Number 44
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If the IBM i-Power Systems platform was up for an award for longevity, it would actually have to be given two awards. One trophy would be for persevering as the last platform standing from the Minicomputer Revolution back in the late 1970s and throughout the 1980s. And the second medal would be for machines that stay in the field for an incredibly, almost unbelievably, long time.
Business Computer Design Int'l. last week unveiled the latest version of its flagship Web application development and runtime environment for IBM i servers. A big part of the WebSmart 10 launch is WebSmart Mobile PHP, a new component that combines server-side PHP code generation with new Mobile jQuery templates to speed the creation of Web-based mobile apps on IBM i. The company also took a big step toward object-oriented PHP development.
The IT director of an IBM i shop somewhere in the Midwest was walking down the street wondering about where he was going to get several programmers with modern RPG skills along with Web and mobile skills. He walks by an employment agency with a sign in the window that says "brains for sale." So he goes inside. The first thing he sees is another sign that says "CEO brains $8 per pound." Next to that what he sees . . .
Mobile applications are proving themselves to be useful tools for businesses. But they often don't work when disconnected from the server running the ERP systems and databases. IBM i development tool maker LANSA is addressing this shortcoming with a new release of its LongRange mobile application framework that allows RPG- or COBOL-based mobile apps to continue working even when the user is outside of cell or WiFi coverage.
Have you noticed IBM i executives are everywhere you look these days? I haven't seen any of them on magazine covers at the grocery store checkout area, but it won't surprise me when it happens. Steve Will, Alison Butterill, Tim Rowe, Barbara Morris and others seem to be more actively evangelizing. Conferences and local user group meetings are benefiting, many of them are blogging, but where it has picked up even more is their participation in vendor webinars.
Help/Systems last week announced it formed a partnership with Dynamic Solutions International to sell DSI's virtual tape libraries (VTLs) into Help/Systems' huge IBM i customer base. In addition to partnering on sales leads, the partnership includes a technical component that involves Help/Systems' backup software for IBM i.
The figures are out for server shipments and revenues for the third quarter from Gartner, and they shed a little more light on what is going on in the IBM customer base and in the market at large. A number of different factors are making it tough on Big Blue and these have short-term and long-term ramifications for IBM i shops and indeed any customers who are deploying Power-based systems.
Venyu, a cloud backup and recovery provider, and IBM business partner and midrange server reseller CMA Technology Solutions last week announced the formation of a partnership aimed at providing cloud backup and recovery solutions for IBM i shops.
IBM last month unveiled a refresh of its high-end DS8870 SAN disk array that features the latest Power7+ processors, which Big Blue says will deliver a 15 percent increase in data throughput for transactional workloads. The refreshed SAN also features a pair of new hard drive options, new security features, and new optimizations for Flash drives.
The growth of big data systems is driving big demand these days for HiT Software, the BackOffice Associates subsidiary that has made a living making database access products. Last month, HiT bolstered its data replication tool, DBMoto, with the capability to move data into SAP HANA.
IBM has promised Wall Street that it will have a $7 billion cloud business by the end of 2015, and it has gotten out the checkbook once again to help it along its way to that goal.
I hope 2013 was a good year for you. It was my best year in a while. I left a dysfunctional bureaucracy for a company where I can make a difference. I renewed several old acquaintances. And I found out from LinkedIn that I know someone who knows someone who knows Haynes Brooke, the guy who plays the sun in the Jimmy Dean sausage commercials. Let's close out the year with some of the feedback you've been kind enough to send to me.
When it came time for a financial system upgrade, DecoPac, the world's largest provider of cake decorations, selected UNIT4's Coda package running on IBM i over an upgrade of Oracle's PeopleSoft, the software vendor announced last week.
Louisa May Alcott said, "I like good strong words that mean something." So do I, especially when they're good strong SQL words. It gives me great pleasure today to share three powerful SQL words with you.
The inability to afford many of the new information technologies and lacking the skills to implement those they can afford is a tightening rope around the neck of many small to midsize companies. It certainly contributes to the lack of application modernization projects that are discussed in two other articles I've written in this issue.
I'm currently working with a client to migrate three IBM i partitions to new Power 7+ machines located in two data centers in different states. While there are several ways to approach migration, over the next two issues I'll discuss four specific techniques for moving an IBM i partition to a new location and the different tasks you have to perform for each technique.