IT Evolution Chicago Style
August 25, 2014 Dan Burger
To successfully take on the challenges of building a modern, high-efficiency digital enterprise, IBM midrange organizations should be re-energizing their in-house IT staff for roles that are the natural evolution of enterprise computing. Not making the effort to do so is a missed opportunity. In most IBM i shops the IT personnel have deep experience with the IT infrastructure as well as intimate knowledge of your business and your industry niche. This isn’t the kind of knowledge you can acquire from outside your organizations.
Developing the talent to manage the modernization of IT starts with the value accrued in your existing IT staff. And improving the overall talent and capabilities of that staff should be at the top of your list of business initiatives.
IBM i shops in the greater Chicago area can take a step in the right direction by getting some of their key people to the Omni User Technical Conference, a two-day event scheduled for September 5 and 6 at Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills, Illinois.
The MVCC location is a new venue for the Omni Tech Conference and so is the two-day format. For quite a few years, the conference was held at the Chicago area IBM offices. The college classrooms will allow the gathering to spread out a bit and take advantage of the facilities that can accommodate a crowd of 150 people or more (counting registered attendees, instructors, vendors, and volunteers). The estimated number of registered attendees is 100.
Moraine Valley Community College is a member of the IBM Power Systems Academic Initiative program. Michelle August, executive director of the COMMON Education Foundation, is the department head for the Information Management Systems program. Hosting the Omni User Technical Conference serves as means to bring students and IBM i professionals together in a learning and networking opportunity. And the two days of education–with one day being Saturday–provides an opportunity for IBM i advocates who can’t miss a day at work, which is often a reason for not attending and conference anywhere.
Day one (Friday) features four, all-day workshops. The topics are PHP, taught by Mike Pavlak; Rational Developer for i, taught by Charles Guarino; system administration and performance, taught by Pete Massiello; and Web services for RPGers, taught by Scott Klement. These are in-depth workshops presented by experienced subject matter experts.
The second day of the conference (Saturday) includes 30 sessions covering a broad range of topics including RPG application development, system administration, mobile device management, and network troubleshooting. The instructor lineup includes they guys from the day one workshops plus other well-known subject matter experts such as Susan Gantner, Jon Paris, Larry Bolhuis, and Yvonne Enselman.
There will be a keynote address on the impacts and implications of technology on day two with Pete Massiello at the podium.
A vendor expo area will be set up Saturday and vendor-specific sessions are scheduled during the lunch break.
Session abstracts for both days can be found at this link.
Registration for the two-day event is $250. Registration for the Friday workshops only is $100 and it’s $150 to attend the Saturday-only sessions.