Looking for an interesting way to introduce DB2 to new employees? Try a new approach to traditional learning with IBM DB2 Gaming. Take advantage of these new interactive self-study learning games to build your DB2 skills using real world problems and solutions. Play now and experience these games at no charge to you!
IBM DB2 Detective GameGetting started with DB2 9 and SQL can be easy with this new interactive game. Using an crime investigation theme, this introductory level game teaches relational database concepts and shows how technology can be applied to solving real-life problems.
IBM DB2 Business GamePut your DB2 and SQL skills to the test with this intermediate level game! Jump into a “run your own business” scenario, where your company’s future depends on a key report needed to secure funds for a critical upgrade. Play the game and you may be ready to transfer your skills into action!
Thanks to Pat and others for these learning assets!
Keep on Learning
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Most Canadians who browse in bookstores know that deep technical books are rarely found at Coles or Chapters stores. I presume that this is true in most countries.... regardless of the bookstore's name. So where do you find books that support IBM products and technology, such as DB2? Online bookstores, of course.
Canada has two primary choices: amazon.ca and chapters.indigo.ca. Both online stores offer discounted prices, free or low cost shipping, and a very wide selection. I want to tell you about something I learned about amazon.ca this morning.
Apparently for a large number of titles, amazon.ca... and perhaps other online sites, tend to list the title and its details, but will not have them in stock UNLESS there is an order. There will be a message saying that the book will ship in 4-6 weeks. I've had many people tell me that they want one of the books for DB2, but cannot wait 4-6 weeks for delivery, so they look for a different way to get the book. Sounds like CATCH-22... a book must be ordered before it is stocked, but listed as "out of stock", who will order the title?
I don't have confirmation that the same policy is in place for chapters.indigo.ca, but I suspect that it is. In a way I don't blame the buyers at these bookstores as there are thousands of new titles every month, so which books should you stock? Which ones will sell? Not an easy decision, I'm sure. I guess I could place an order at these sites just to get the books I care about stocked....
The other interesting thing happening in Canada right now is that our dollar is at par with the US dollar. Canadians are used to seeing two prices on the backs of all books... a Canadian price and an American price. These prices are set when the book is first published, but rarely change when the currency fluctuates. Again, a difficult thing to do. As an example, the Understanding DB2 9 Security book has a price of $49.99 US and $61.99 Canadian! What a huge difference! What to do???
Well, you could order the book from amazon.com, but I'm not sure what the shipping charges would be... or if this is even allowed given that there is a Canadian version of amazon. If you live near a border or plan to travel to the US, you could buy when you are there.... a minimum of a $12 difference can be worth it. Another idea that someone mentioned to me is to use US$ at a Canadian store. Most large stores here accept both currencies and offer an exchange depending on the current exchange rate. But... if we are in Canada, I think the store would still charge the Canadian price regardless of the currency used.... so you'd still be paying the inflated price.
Let me know if you have any experience with these dilemmas... I'd like to know what your suggestions are.
svisser1 2700018UK9 3,151 Views
I know that it is very difficult for some people to arrange to go to a conference at their company's expense. Even IBMers who are trying to attend an IBM conference, it can be challenging. It seems that the rule is to now have 2 presentations or more accepted at the conference. Maybe this is a requirement for many other companies as well. If it's tough to get approval if you volunteer to be a speaker at the conference, you can imagine how difficult it is to get approval to attend the conference to be educated.
A friend of mine suggested that we look into providing a scholarship to one or more people that would entail a free registration to the conference. I like the idea and will promote this idea for future conferences where I can. As I was thinking of this, I came across this news item:
Got 10 minutes? Enter the DB2 9 Compression ChallengeThe DB2 9 Compression Challenge is less than a month away from closing and we need your entry. There is no purchase necessary and it takes only 10 minutes to enter. You don’t need to be running any version of DB2 to participate. First Prize - Full-event registration to one of IDUG's 2008 events. Second Prize – Upgrade Membership for the same eventsIDUG 2008 - Australia (March 2008 in Sydney, Australia) IDUG 2008- North America (May 5-10, 2008, in Dallas, Texas) IDUG 2008 - Europe (Dates/Location TBD)
So a "scholarship" to attend an IDUG conference in 2008 is possible! All you have to do is to enter this challenge. My friend is working at a shop that isn't running DB2... yet, so I like the caveat that You don’t need to be running any version of DB2 to participate.
I hope this gives an opportunity to one or two people who have not been able to go to conferences... and would like to. Conferences are a great way to keep up to date on a large variety of related topics. It helps you network with people who can help you in many different ways. And, perhaps most obvious of all, going to a conference gives you an opportunity to earn several certifications.... normally the tests are $150 US, regardless if you pass or fail, so taking exams is a very easy way to justify attending a conference.
But, if you are still unable to go a conference, don't despair. IBM provides many learning opportunities that you can take part in, either for free or inexpensively. I'll use books as an example... see our Bookstore Page for links to excellent books that can be used for self-study.... and we try to point to the lowest cost provider of the books. The other book example is of course the IBM Redbooks. For free you can download PDF versions of technical books that are excellent references as well as self-study resources. DeveloperWorks is another example where you can find a variety of helpful technical documents... free of charge. As for classroom education, our new ILO offerings are an excellent way to take award-winning education, right at your desk.
svisser1 2700018UK9 2,790 Views
Building an Intelligent Web: Theory and Practice will be available in October. The book is intended to be a textbook, so the price is higher than other books that I mention.
Here are the details:
The World Wide Web has become an extremely popular way of publishing and distributing electronic resources. Though the Web is rich with information, collecting and making sense of this data is difficult because it is rather unorganized. Building an Intelligent Web introduces students and professionals to the state-of-the art development of Web Intelligence techniques and teaches how to apply these techniques to develop the next generation of intelligent Web sites. Each chapter contains theoretical bases, which are also illustrated with the help of simple numeric examples, followed by practical implementation. Students will find Building an Intelligent Web to be an active and exciting introduction to advanced Web mining topics.
Topics covered include Web Intelligence, Information Retrieval, Semantic Web, Classification and Association Rules, SQL, Database Theory, Applications to e-commerce and Bioinformatics, Clustering, Modeling Web Topology, and much more!
Includes IBM DB2 Express-C, a data server used in the development and deployment of applications including: XML, C/C++, Java, .NET, PHP, and more.
If you are a professor or curriculum developer, request a sample copy from the publisher. We're very pleased that the authors and publisher of this book decided to include DB2 Express-C on the CD that is shipped with the book. Most publishers are reluctant to ship CDs with their books any longer, but it can be very important, especially for students.
svisser1 2700018UK9 3,021 Views
I've recently read the following articles about the pressure IT people have to continuously upgrade their skills in order to remain employable and valuable to their employers:
IT Workers Battle to Keep Skills CurrentDATE: 04-SEP-2007By Deborah Perelman
Back To School: Funding An Ongoing EducationSeptember 2007 - Daniel Margolis New instructor-led online (ILO) training
My team, WW Data Servers Education & Enablement, is either directly or indirectly involved in the creation of many of the training resources that are available to you in the Data Servers area. Our mission is to establish Education as a business driver for our customer’s and partner’s success. We do this by offering you a variety of ways for you to develop your skills, either as a first time user of database products, or as an established expert who wishes to stay abreast of key changes. Here are some of the things that we offer:
* IBM Training- traditional classroom educationOur excellent instructors, high quality materials and hands-on labs combine for an experience that keeps students coming back. In fact, according to our after-class surveys 93% of our students say they will come back to IBM for more training and 97% are extremely satisfied with their instructor.
Here are some of the courses you may want to consider:DB2 9 for z/OS Application Performance and Tuning (CV960)DB2 9 for z/OS Transition Workshop (CV300)DB2 9 for LUW Advanced Database Recovery (CF492)DB2 9 for LUW Multiple Partition DBA Workshop (CF242)DB2 9 for LUW Multiple Partition Environment for Single Partition DBAs (CG242)
- instructor-led online (ILO) educationILO courses are taught by a live instructor on a specific date and time. These courses are exactly the same as their classroom equivalent, including the course length, content and student materials. Students receive their course materials in advance by mail. To participate on the day of the class, all you need is a high-speed Internet connection. This allows you to connect to a virtual classroom enabling you to interact directly with the instructor to ask questions or clarify material...just as you would in a physical classroom.
Here are some of the courses you may want to consider:DB2 9 Database Administration Workshop for UNIX - Instructor Led Online (3L210)DB2 9 Database Administration Workshop for Windows - Instructor Led Online (3L230)DB2 9 for LUW Quickstart for Experienced Relational DBAs - Instructor Led Online (3L480)DB2 for z/OS Data Sharing Implementation - Instructor Led Online (3V210)DB2 UDB for z/OS Data Sharing Recovery and Restart - Instructor Led Online (3V920)
* CertificationEarning a certification from IBM is a way for you to demonstrate your expertise to the world. It validates your skills and demonstrates your proficiency in the latest IBM technology and solutions. The certification requirements are tough, but it's not rocket science, either. It's a rigorous process that differentiates you from everyone else.
Here are some of the exams that you may want to consider:
Exam 730: DB2 9 FundamentalsExam 731: DB2 9 DBA for Linux UNIX and WindowsExam 732: DB2 9 DBA for z/OSExam 733: DB2 9 Application DeveloperExam 734: DB2 9 Advanced Database Administrator for Linux UNIX and WindowsExam 736: DB2 9 Database Administrator for Linux UNIX and Windows Upgrade
* BooksBooks are wonderful resources to both build and refresh skills. They provide a wonderful opportunity for self-paced learning while becoming a handy reference guide for use on-the-job. IBM offers many great resources to build your library of technical and business skills - two of which are IBM Retail Books and IBM Redbooks.
- Retail books about IBM products are technologies are growing in number. Hopefully you are able to find some in physical bookstores or when searching online bookstores. For a complete list of those available for Information Management, see Information Management Retail books.
Here are some you may want to consider:Understanding DB2 9 Security (IBM Press) by Rebecca Bond, Kevin Yeung-Kuen See (IBM), Carmen Ka Man Wong (IBM), Yuk-Kuen Henry Chan (IBM).
IBM DB2 9 New Features (McGraw-Hill) by Paul Zikopoulos, George Baklarz, Leon Katsnelson, Chris Eaton (all IBM)
DB2 9 Fundamentals Certification Study Guide (MC Press) by Roger Sanders
DB2 9 for Linux, Unix, and Windows: DBA Guide, Reference and Exam Prep (IBM Press) by George Baklarz (Author), Bill Wong (Author), Paul C. Zikopoulos (Author)- Sixth Edition of our most popular book EVER!
DB2 for Developers (MC Press) by Phil Gunning - expected in December.... SPECIAL 37% PRE-ORDER DISCOUNT!
DB2 9 for z/OS Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 732 (MC Press) by Susan Lawson and Dan Luksetich - October - SPECIAL 30% DISCOUNT ON PRE-ORDERS!
DB2 9 Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 731 (MC Press) by Roger Sanders - October
DB2 9 Database Administration Upgrade Certification Study Guide for Exam 736 (MC Press) by Roger Sanders
- IBM Redbooks are well-known to long time IBM customers, but if they are new to you, essential IBM Redbooks are developed and published by the IBM International Technical Support Organization, ITSO. The ITSO develops and delivers skills, technical know-how, and materials to IBM technical professionals, Business Partners, clients, and the marketplace in general. Most people read IBM Redbooks electronically or by printing out sections of the PDF files that may be downloaded, but did you know that you can also order a printed copy? It is called Print on Demand.
Some that you may want to consider: DB2 9 for z/OS Performance TopicsDatabase Partitioning, Table Partitioning, and MDC for DB2 9Oracle to DB2 Conversion Guide for Linux, UNIX, and Windows
* Tutorials and articlesAlthough you should be able to find tutorials and articles about DB2 in many locations, we focus on ensuring that the DB2 portal of developerWorks is kept up to date with a variety of learning materials.
Here are some you may want to consider:DB2 9 Fundamentals certification 730 prep seriesDB2 9 Database administration 731 certification prep seriesDB2 9 Application Development 733 certification prep series
If my team doesn't create it, we still try to promote it.... like conferences, newsletters, podcasts, etc. If you have some education that you'd like me to know about, make a comment.
I hope that you're able to find something in this list of options to help you keep your skills current!
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Every now and again, it is useful to have a list of valuable links..... Here is a list that I was quickly able to put together.
* IBM DB2 product support on-line
* For IBM DB2 Version 9 product documentation (HTML)
* For IBM DB2 Version 9 product documentation (PDF)
* DB2 9 Home Page
* Information Management Training and Certification – Certification, training, retail books, offers, and more
* DB2 9 Information Center
* DB2 9 Support Home Page
* DB2 9 Manuals and Documentation
* The DB2ZONE
* Blog on DB2 LUW
* IDUG DB2-L Listserver
* IBM developerWorks - DB2 portal
* LAZYDBA Listserver
* comp.databases.ibm-db2 Google Newsgroup
* IBM Redbooks
* Planet DB2 - a blog aggregator that combines DB2 blogs from around the world.
* IDUG – International DB2 User’s Group
* DB2 Magazine Online
I hope you find it useful. If there are other links that you'd like me to be aware of, make a comment. We often use these links as part of promoting our skills resources.
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The August edition of the DB2 Magazine Newsletter came out today and I learned about this challenge that IDUG is running... IBM is sponsoring:
Introducing the DB2 9 Deep Compression Challenge
Based on feedback from early users, Deep Compression is a hugely-popular feature of DB2 9 for Linux/UNIX/Windows, IBM's latest data server. To highlight this feature, the International DB2 Users Group (IDUG®) is pleased to announce the IDUG DB2 9 Deep Compression Challenge, a non-competitive industry-wide competition aimed at highlighting the storage optimization benefits - costs savings, in particular- users can achieve with the Deep Compression feature available in DB2 9 for Linux, UNIX and Windows.
For details see the August edition of the DB2 Magazine Newsletter and the description of the IDUG DB2 9 Deep Compression Challenge.
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I hope many of you are able to join us in Las Vegas this October for the second annual Information On Demand Global Conference. If you are able to come, remember that tomorrow is the deadline for the Early Bird Special where you can save $200 on registration.
I've been putting together a book signing schedule for some of the speakers who are also authors. Those who are confirmed for a signing:
1) Stephen Covey - The 8th Habit: From Effectiveness to Greatness2) Chris Anderson - The Long Tail3) Paul Zikopoulos - To be announced at the conference.4) Carlton Doe - IBM Informix Dynamic Server 11, The Next Generation of OLTP Data Server Technology5) Carl Kessler - Outside-in Software Development: A Practical Approach to Building Successful Stakeholder-based Products
In addition, here is what the team has planned for this year's conference:
* 7,000+ attendees * 200+ customer and Business Partner speakers* An Expo Solutions Center powered by 200 Business Partners* More compelling content: 589 total elective 1 hour sessions; 100 Business Leader sessions; 468 Technical Skill Building sessions* More technical opportunities* Enhanced community programs* And the list goes on . . .
I hope to see you there! Besides the book signings, you'll find me helping in the certification lounge.... were you there last year with all the decadent food and even better: the massages!
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Have you ever looked at the annual results of the Certification Magazine Salary Survey? This year, take part in the survey to see how your salary measures up to the others who answer the survey!
Here are the details:
On Aug. 7, 2007 Certification Magazine launched its 2007 Salary Survey, which compiles compensation, certification and education information for IT professionals. The Litchfield Group, an independent research company, will conduct the research and finalize the data. The survey will close Friday, Aug. 31. To participate in this year’s survey, visit www.certmag.com/salarysurvey.
Last year, 22 companies agreed to partner with Certification Magazine as Salary Survey sponsors. Their extensive promotional efforts via e-mail, newsletters and Web sites helped draw more than 35,000 respondents worldwide — given this participation level, it was truly an industry-wide survey. This year, 23 companies have agreed to partner with Certification Magazine as Salary Survey sponsors. Additionally, the survey has been revised to expand its scope to represent the industry as a whole. The survey results will be reported in the cover story of Certification Magazine’s December 2007 issue. Every year, this article provides vital analysis on the state of the certification industry and IT in general. To ensure delivery of the December issue, sign up for a FREE subscription to Certification Magazine at www.certmag.com/subscribe.
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Check out Daniel Krook's blog from Aug 3: "Thoughts on the DB2 9 Fundamentals exam" where he discusses his study strategy and experience in preparing for, and passing, Exam 730: DB2 9 Fundamentals. You can find Daniel's blog, plus many others on PlanetDB2.
Let me know if you want to share your thoughts as well....