For The Love Of Frank
September 29, 2014 Dan Burger
Everyone knows the name Frank Soltis. He’s an IBM certified legend and even though he retired in 2008, his footprints have not faded away. For years after his retirement, the one-time chief scientist remained a highly visible world traveler and platform advocate. He was a keynote speaker at IBM i conferences, including the RPG & DB2 Summit in 2011 and the series of iBelieve events sponsored by looksoftware during 2012 and 2013. More recently, his IBM stump speech campaign has slowed.
But it’s good to see him back again. Soltis is IBM i comfort food. Like a good roadside diner draws truckers, Soltis is a magnet for IBM i users. Along with the rest of us–and the system he played a big part in creating–he’s aged chronologically, but the dreams of the future still dance in his head.
It’s a bit ironic that Soltis connects us with yesterday while at the same time he is encouraging the IBM i community to plan for tomorrow.
So Dr. Frank, as many of his friends call him, will be handed the microphone again on Thursday. He’s been selected as the lead-off speaker in a series of webcasts hosted by HelpSystems and designed to discuss and examine the future of IBM i data centers.
“The Evolution of the IBM i in the Data Center” is the theme for webcast number one. Soltis will be joined by Tom Huntington, vice president of technical services at HelpSystems. The webcast is scheduled to kick off at 9 a.m. Central Time. Use this link to register.
It doesn’t take the whispered words of a fortune teller or the new found realization brought on by airport lounge margaritas to grasp the concept that past accomplishments do not guarantee future success. I think we all understand that, even though there may be some in the room (take a quick look around) who are content to coast a bit.
But a little advice on what we might expect next can come in handy, especially when it comes from Soltis, a guy who does not dwell on the past or lean on the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” crutch.
Here’s a glimpse of the topics you can expect to hear about:
Ever the optimist, Soltis is as reliable and dependable as the midrange servers he helped develop. You might hear about the platform’s design philosophy that is considered “legacy” by its competitors while they also copy many of its innovations and claim them as something new for themselves. More people need to be aware of that.
Wherever he goes, people will congregate. And whenever he speaks, people listen. He still has the ability to energize the IBM i community.