New IBM i User Group For The US Midwest Formed
September 13, 2023 Timothy Prickett Morgan
Here is something that we don’t see every day in IBM i Land: The formation of a new user group. But that is what Briteskies, an IBM i consultancy and application development and modernization firm based in Cleveland, Ohio, has done by launching the IBM i Mid-West User Group, or iMWUG for short.
“We founded this group to help fill a gap that we noticed in the geographical locations of IBM i user groups,” Leah Avner, IBM i coordinator at Briteskies, tells The Four Hundred. “While Ohio seems to have once had a user group, it doesn’t seem to still be functioning. My plan is to do quarterly informational sessions, whether that be round table discussions, webinars, or use cases and will depend on our audience and the will of participants.”
As is the case with all user groups that either hold events or do presentations virtually, there is a geographic element to the base that iMWUG is trying to serve, but there are no hard and fast rules about where you have to live or work to participate in iMWUG. Avner says that the group is open to anyone who wants to participate.
To start off, all of iMWUG’s webinars and other events will be held online, but the goal is to eventually have a proper in-person event. For the moment, Briteskies is taking on the responsibility of finding speakers, promoting events, building up a user group base, and maintaining the contact list, but the company wants to make it very clear that everything about iMWUG – importantly its user list – is kept separate from Briteskies.
“We’re looking for a place to educate the community as well as ourselves,” adds Avner. “iMWUG is not a place for our own self-promotion, that’s why we are keeping membership free and why when choosing speakers, we are looking for people who can share expert knowledge. We are dedicated to the iMWUG platform being for education, not sales.”
The inaugural event for iMWUG will be held online on October 16 at 6 p.m. Eastern standard time, and it will feature three-time IBM Champion for Power and IBM i developer Simon Hutchinson, who among other things hosts the RPGPGM site. The topic is: “Simon’s Top 10 SQL Favorites.”