Hybrid cloud and IBM Z: An interview with Tina Tarquinio

By | 4 minute read | August 28, 2019

From time to time, we invite industry thought leaders to share their opinions and insights on current technology trends to the IBM Systems IT Infrastructure blog. The opinions in these posts are their own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of IBM.

I invited the director of IBM Z to share with me some of the challenges businesses encounter when deploying their mission-critical workloads between off-premises and on-premises hybrid cloud environments. We discuss the resiliency and security on IBM Z, scalability and multicloud trends.

Tina M. Tarquinio is the director of the IBM Z team, building the mainframe of the future. Currently, she leads a team of forward-thinking engineers building the z/OS Operating System, focused on enabling workloads to be flexible, and creating a true end to end DevOps experience.

In her time at IBM, she has held both technical and leadership roles, across multiple platforms (IBM Z, Power, Storage and x86) and disciplines. Her roles have always had close ties to where development teams and clients intersect, helping clients be successful while feeding back into development, and facilitating discussion around future product roadmaps. A certified IT specialist, she has written several IBM Redbooks around High Performance Computing, and has acquired both patents and publishes for her work. Currently, she is leading teams to develop and bring to market, technology for the next era of application agility for IBM Z workloads and driving the next generation of DevOps for z/OS – the operating system that powers the worlds business. Download the Clabby Analytics Research Report “IBM Z: Making Dev work with Ops”.

Since graduating from the University of Albany with B.S. degree in Mathematics and Computer Science, she has been active in local schools, encouraging students at all levels to study sciences. She enjoys mentoring many early tenure and women engineers at IBM, as well as being on the advisory board for CIS Programs at a local college. Her interviews with Amazing Women working on the mainframe, can be found here.

A New York Hudson Valley native, in her spare time she can be found hiking all over the Hudson Valley with her family.


[00:45] Avrohom: “What is IBM Z?“

Tina: “I get asked this question all the time, because I’m always talking about the mainframe and IBM Z, so of course, people always ask what is it? I like to say it’s really the world’s most scalable and powerful platform to run your business on. It’s more than just a server. It’s a truly integrated stack and architecture platform that you can trust your business to run on worldwide, 24/7.”

[01:20] Avrohom: “With the growing prevalence of cloud, companies are leveraging it for their mission-critical workloads. There is public cloud and private cloud, which many people are familiar with, and then there is the hybrid cloud. What does hybrid cloud actually mean?”

Tina: “Right! I think sometimes we through words around like that, and hybrid cloud or multicloud is a new term that’s really been talked about. To me it’s really a deployment methodology. It’s really looking at where workloads should run, according to their SLAs, and where they’re appropriate to run, and that can be in a public cloud. You can imagine that you have software that runs in a public cloud, as a service, but you need that information to connect back to your application that you have in your private cloud, on premises. And to me, hybrid cloud is that all those things run where they’re supposed to be, but they all work together as one, so that you still get the business outcome and the user experience that you’re looking for. You want to make sure that it’s scalable, and reliable, and provides the quick turnaround that you need for your business. To me, that’s really what hybrid cloud means. Making everything work together and having things where they belong.”

[02:39] IBM uses the term “five 9’s” with regards to the reliability of the IBM Z platform. Many companies use that term as well. What does it mean?

[04:17] In addition to availability, you also need scalability. Just because an app is available, doesn’t mean it has an acceptable response time.

[05:50] Uptime is extremely critical because 80 percent of the time, if your application doesn’t work people won’t come back. Of the 20 percent who do come back, if your app is still unresponsive, 100 percent of them won’t return a third time!

[06:46] It’s all about the User Experience. IBM Design Thinking is all about what is the true user experience.

[08:12] With social media platforms like Twitter, customer’s frequently share their feedback – positive and negative – with the world, instantaneously.

[08:39] Trends in the market are changing, and people need to respond to changes quicker.

[10:45] Software development in a hybrid cloud environment is a delicate balance between leveraging the flexibility of hybrid cloud and making sure that nothing goes wrong.

[11:00] How to manage the risks associated with cloud.

[11:30] What’s scaring people with regards to moving mission critical infrastructure to the cloud?

[12:12] The backbone of many hybrid clouds is IBM Z.

[13:05] How do people connect with you?

[13:42] Do you have any parting words of wisdom to share with the audience?