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Showing posts from September, 2007

The ebb and flow in technology deployments!

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Back home in Boulder again - and this is my Boulder office. For those of you who were present at the closing session of the ITUG 2005 Summit, you may recall the gift I received from Volker Dietz - a painting created for the Tandem Germany office. It's now framed and takes pride of place in my office.


I am pleasantly surprised with the readership this blog is receiving and with the number of good comments being posted. Just to let you know more about how this works, at the request of ITUG, all comments that are posted are sent my way before appearing on the blog – I can accept, or reject complete postings – but I cannot edit them. So what you see posted is what was submitted – in total.

I am also pleased with the marketing done by others – already the link to this blog is being promoted in other newsletters – electronic and printed. Watch for even more references in upcoming ITUG Connection issues. I have always been a fan of “guerilla marketing” and the support I am receiving is cle…

It's time to leave the Duke!

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Back in Boulder again for a few days, and then it’s back to Simi Valley next week. Later next week, it’s off to the Euro ITUG event in Brighton. So what I would like to do tonight is to pick up on one theme I have been covering – the Integrity NonStop platform itself.

It is clear to me that in the months to come, HP will be distancing itself from its competitors based on its roll-out, top to bottom, of blades packages. And nowhere will the impact on users be more visible than in the NonStop community. IBM has already made it clear that, for the time being, its mainframes will not be based on blades – the basic building block of “books” will continue for new product introductions for some time to come. This is not to say that IBM’s decision is wrong, and they are certainly enjoying an up-tick in mainframe usage of late, just that it will be pursuing a different path to HP.

As I flew to Denver I grabbed a couple of magazines and among them were a couple of recent ITUG Connection issues. I…

What did you have in mind, eh?

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With a dozen postings already up on the blog, I am beginning to enjoy the exchange that’s begun. However, among the postings and emails that have arrived, are some questions about the scope of my topics, the style of commentary I am providing, as well as some concerns about who exactly my audience is. So, I thought it is probably the right time to take this on and provide some feedback as to my views on all three of these issues. The picture I have included here is of me relaxed, looking out to sea, and I can't think of a better way to introduce the topic!

When it comes to the scope of topics I will cover, it was clearly outlined in my first Connection magazine column, the Real Time View, back in the July – August 2006 issue – when I said “I plan to focus exclusively on the data center, and to cover the many combinations of server platforms and infrastructure we all rely upon to support our business. This is not to dismiss other important areas within IT - but just reflects the are…

Service? I’ll give you service …

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I’m starting to put my things together and am getting ready to head up to the Bay area to drop in on Cupertino, as well as my own head office in San Francisco. I like my Simi Valley office – and here it is! After a few days in the Bay area, I will head back home to Boulder. I need to catch up with my good friend Lyman, one of my business partners, and I have to take our motorcycles in for service.

And as I was thinking about getting the bikes checked in for routine services, it occurred to me that service, any kind of service, is just going downhill. Like most of you, I have to believe there’s just not too many 1.800 numbers we care to call anymore. I find it so much easier today if I can just go online and punch a few keys on someone’s web site. This was brought home to me recently when, as a result of my own mistakes, I have to admit, I put myself into a situation that I am still trying to sort out.

As the Memorial Day weekend arrived (that’s back in late May, for my international re…

Brave new open world!

Back in my Simi Valley office, and once again knee deep in my day job. But there have been a number of exchanges and conference calls today where a common thread has emerged. While in Sydney I had the opportunity to catch up with old friends, some of them mentioned in previous blog postings, and the conversations turned to how cool development has become.

No matter the age – and yes, I talked with folks my own age as well as with those the age of my children – cutting code was what they really liked to do. Whether deep inside software development shops, or simply providing applications to their own organizations, the types of environments they worked with and the tools they used, began to look alike. I really saw for the first time the full impact of standards and an open development environment – and the flexibility and power that has come as a result.

As most of you know, I have a passion for user groups and for those folks who support user groups. It should come as no surprise to any…

Fast Forward! Transformation and Morphing!

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I have now returned to the US – after a short stop over in Boulder, I am back in my Simi Valley office and the picture I have included here is of me just off of Presidential Drive overlooking Simi Valley. It doesn’t matter how many times I make the trip to Sydney, I still come back whacked each time … there’s just no fun from those long-haul over-water trips.

But now that I am back at work, with access to my system, I have gone back and added a few comments to earlier postings. I won’t cover them all here, I promise! I have to admit though that I am pretty pleased with the level of response I have seen so far.

The blog postings “Is 30 Minutes too Long?”, “Got Security?”, and “Whereto CTO?” all generated comments that I felt are worth revisiting. A steady trickle of postings is beginning to appear. Clearly, this isn’t the only dialogue taking place across the ITUG Community – a number of online discussion forums are supported by ITUG and can be easily accessed from the ITUG web site – ht…

A Taste for Virtualization

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I am still in Sydney but getting close to leaving – and what a change this second week has seen. The high-powered leaders of many nations have now left, and the city is beginning to look a lot better. The security fences are coming down and access to the city is returning to normal.

Following a couple of positive comments over my use of a picture last week to show the extremes of Sydney’s security measures, I couldn’t help myself when I saw a city bus go by with this plastered across its side – and I just couldn’t come up with a better word to describe the transformation of Sydney as it was locked-down.

I have caught up with a couple of old friends from my time at Nixdorf back in the early ‘80s. David Miller, Kim Brebach, Rolf Jester, Kevin McCormack – all folks I worked closely with for many years at a time when Nixdorf made a very serious push into the IBM Plug Compatible Mainframe marketplace – the 8890 product family.

But it wasn’t about the past we spent time on – but the future. An…

Glitches, the norm?

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Still in Sydney – but the headlines of the past few weeks have been bothering me somewhat. Have you seen all of them – it looks like computer glitches are hitting us hard! I have included a picture of Sydney in case you aren't sure what it looks like!

In my August 27th blog posting – Is 30 mins too long? – I remarked that “I have little patience for any retailer of financial institution that skips on their infrastructure”. But now I am seeing whole sectors of the community being affected. I have to start wondering – are we becoming desensitized to all of this?

What caught my attention was the headlines here last week – well, actually, a small article in one of the financial papers – “Glitch shuts out Westpac online customers”! It turned out that about 30 percent of the bank’s 400,000 internet banking customer could not access the (online banking) service. The paper I was reading went on to add that according to Westpac, “it appears to be related to an internal systems error which we…

Whereto, CTO?

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In Sydney, I have had the opportunity to catch up with a couple of former Insession colleagues. It’s been a year now since I left Insession / ACI and went over to GoldenGate, but I still enjoy a discussion with the lads.

Peter Shell, who used to manage the Sydney development team has now moved on to a new job as the boss of IT across AsiaPac. This is bringing him face to face with many of the issues many IT exec face today – dealing with an ever-demanding user community while navigating the vagaries of regulation and compliance. I often loose site of the fact that ISV development shops share many of the same issues as the corporate world and where any outage at all can put a project at risk as valuable time is lost.

Peter is known to many of us as the former leader of OzTUG and spent many years associated with the event I always looked forward to – in a few weeks time there will be another OzTUG event that will take on a different look as at aligns with other HP activities within the re…

Got Security?

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After a couple of good days in Boulder, I am now down in Sydney – and what a change! Not just in terms of the weather, as Sydney is coming out of Winter and the first days of Spring are pushing up the thermometer whereas Boulder continue to bake in some of the hottest weather it’s experienced all year.

The real shock has come in arriving in "Fortress Sydney"! For the week we are here there is the APEC conference – a meeting involving the heads of state of the US, Russia, China, Japan and many other countries that ring the Pacific. Concerned over the potential of demonstrations and even terrorist actions, the CBD has been surrounded in concrete and 10 foot high fences.
I have included a picture (above) here to give you a feeling for what it’s like – the perimeter goes for miles as it fences in most of the North Eastern corner of the city including the Opera House, the residence of the Governor, and most of the major hotels.
Gates have been set up to control access into the res…

BLOG Launch ...

This week, ITUG will begin active promotion of this blog and I will be very interested to see how many in the community begin to read my entries and the comments these generate. I am keeping my fingers crossed here and am hopeful that a good number of you will turn to the blog from time to time.

In my upcoming ITUG Connection columns I will be talking about the NS1000 and asking the question about its role in a distributed environment - will the NS1000 generate new opportunities to offload other platforms, and not just existing NonStop servers. Would it be good business to offload other Unix applications, and perhaps even IBM mainframe applications, onto this family of NonStop servers? Could you take advantage of NS SQL on the NS1000 to create small EDW systems - one's where much less than 10's of Terabytes were needed?

I elected to adddress these possibilities for the NS1000 as I see this as a transitional architecture - it takes advantage of a building block that just costs so…