Keep on Learning


DB2 9 is a leading-edge hybrid data server that offers optimum storage, scalability, and availability. DB2 pureScale is a new technology primarily optimized for scale-out transactional processing clusters in an active-active manner. This succinct guide will show you how DB2 with pureScale can provide you transparent application scalability, the ability to deliver agile-like computing to your transaction systems, and extreme availability.


Want even more information about DB2 pureScale?  See the blog entry I wrote in August: More on DB2 pureScale.



IBM SPSS Modeler Cookbook

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Another great book that will be featured at the IBM Insight conference this year is:

IBM SPSS Modeler Cookbook

By Keith McCormick, Scott Mutchler, Dean Abbott, Meta Brown, and Tom Khabaza

At IBM Insight:

If you are attending the IBM Insights Conference, you can purchase this book and have Keith and Scott sign your copy.  They will be available for signing on Monday, October 27 from 12:00 – 1:00 pm. 

About the book:

IBM SPSS Modeler is a data mining workbench that enables you to explore data, identify important relationships that you can leverage, and build predictive models quickly allowing your organization to base its decisions on hard data not hunches or guesswork.

IBM SPSS Modeler Cookbook takes you beyond the basics and shares the tips, the timesavers, and the workarounds that experts use to increase productivity and extract maximum value from data. The authors of this book are among the very best of these exponents, gurus who, in their brilliant and imaginative use of the tool, have pushed back the boundaries of applied analytics. By reading this book, you are learning from practitioners who have helped define the state of the art.

Follow the industry standard data mining process, gaining new skills at each stage, from loading data to integrating results into everyday business practices. Get a handle on the most efficient ways of extracting data from your own sources, preparing it for exploration and modeling. Master the best methods for building models that will perform well in the workplace.

Go beyond the basics and get the full power of your data mining workbench with this practical guide.


What you will learn from this book:

  • Use and understand the industry standard CRISP_DM process for data mining.
  • Assemble data simply, quickly, and correctly using the full power of extraction, transformation, and loading (ETL) tools.
  • Control the amount of time you spend organizing and formatting your data.
  • Develop predictive models that stand up to the demands of real-life applications.
  • Take your modeling to the next level beyond default settings and learn the tips that the experts use.
  • Learn why the best model is not always the most accurate one.
  • Master deployment techniques that put your discoveries to work making the most of your business’ most critical resources.


About the Authors:

Keith McCormick is an independent data mining consultant, trainer, and author. He has a wealth of consulting experience in statistics, predictive analytics, and data mining. For many years, he has worked in the SPSS community, first as an External Trainer and Consultant for SPSS Inc., and then in a similar role with IBM. He possesses a BS in Computer Science and Psychology from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. He is an expert in IBM's SPSS software suite including IBM SPSS Statistics, IBM SPSS Modeler, AMOS, and Text Mining. He is active as a moderator and participant in statistics groups online including LinkedIn's Statistics and Analytics Consultants Groups. He also blogs and reviews related books at


Scott Mutchler is the Vice President of Advanced Analytics Services. Scott has a long track record of delivering enterprise class Advanced Analytics solutions that drive massive customer value. Scott is equally proficient at building high-performing teams, where ever team member focuses on their individual strengths. This approach has resulted in a team this is passionate about Advanced Analytics. That passion for Advanced Analytics is reflected in every client engagement.



For a full list of the book signing events at the conference, see



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Certification Offer: Assess & Save, until Dec 14, 2012

svisser1 Tags:  db2 certification offer 5 Comments 9,357 Views
Back by popular demand: Assess & Save: Advance your career - Save 50% on IBM Professional Certification for Information Management Professionals

Gauge your readiness for certification by purchasing and completing an online assessment test. Pass an Information Management Online Assessment Test from November 1, 2012 through December 14, 2012 to qualify for the 50 percent certification savings voucher.

If you pass the test, you'll automatically receive an electronic 50 percent savings voucher good toward the corresponding certification exam between November 1, 2012 through January 31, 2013.  Details.

Here some exams that you may consider taking with this offer:

Exam 610 - DB2 10.1 Fundamentals
Exam 611: DB2 10.1 DBA for Linux, UNIX, and Windows
Exam 614:  DB210.1 Advanced DBA for Linux, UNIX, and Windows

More blog posts about Certification:

A new way to study for DB2 Certifications
DB2 10 Certification Tutorials
Cert 101
How to Prepare to Pass a DB2 Certification Exam?
DB2 10 for z/OS Certification Roles, Exams and Study Materials
Certification Study Guides for DB2 LUW Exams
DB2 9.7 for Linux, UNIX and Windows: Certification Roles and Exams
Certifications: Beyond DB2
Certification Tips on the DB2Night Show
Web-based Training Courses to Consider

Good luck on your exam!


All about IDUG DB2 Tech Conference - Anaheim

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Friday on the DB2Night Show, host Scott Hayes invited Bryan Paulsen and Paul Turpin to talk about the upcoming IDUG conference:

  • Bryan Paulson, John Deere, Volunteer of IDUG – current chair
  • Paul Turpin – S1, Volunteer of IDUG - past chair

First thing to notice is that the name of the conference has changed.  It is now the IDUG DB2 Tech Conference.  They made the name change to help people get funding to attend the conference. 

The conference takes place May 2-6, in Anaheim California.  This is the first time an IDUG conference has taken place in Anaheim.  I attended IBM conferences there a few times and quite enjoyed the lovely weather and restaurants… as well as the nearby Disney Park.  (It is the best Disney park, in my opinion.)

Monday May 2 is a full day of education that costs an extra fee.  The idea is to have in depth education that will go to a much deeper level than is normal during the much shorter conference sessions.  There is the extra fee, but it is well worth the price.  There are 6 classes available for you to choose from:


The next four days, May 3-6 are for the 105 technical sessions.  The sessions are split across 7 tracks including: DB2 LUW, DB2 z/OS, and Application Development.  Speakers are in three categories: Users, Consultants, and IBM experts:

  • Users are DB2 professionals working in the field on DB2 on a daily basis.  This includes  DBAs, Application Developers, and more.  Some of the notable speakers this year include: Bryan Paulson, Alexander Kopac, Tony Andrews, and Suresh Sane.
  • Consultants are in the field selling education and services to the customers using DB2 and include Susan Lawson, David Buelke, Sheryl Larsen, and Fred Sobotka.
  • IBM experts are people from various roles in IBM including the Development Lab, Product Management, Education, and more: Terry Purcell, Matt Huras, Roger Miller, Matthias Nicola, Paul Zikopoulos, Melanie Stopfer, Kate Kurtz, and Leon Katsnelson.

I recognize every name listed above.  I think just about each of them has at one time or another earned Best Speaker awards.  I don’t think people will be nodding off in any of these sessions!

Jeff Jonas is this year’s keynote speaker.   His topic: “Sensemaking on Streams and What Makes Smart Systems Smart!”.  Jeff is one of the most interesting people who I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in the past few years.  He has much energy, enthusiasm and charisma all on top of his very high intelligence!  IBM bought the company that Jeff founded that helped casinos reduce fraud and Jeff decided to stay with IBM.  He travels the world talking to people including many very influential people.  You’ll be very energized after hearing Jeff speak and believe me, you’ll be searching the web to find out more about this fascinating person!

There are three spotlight sessions led by Jeff Josten, Berni Schiefer, and Curt Cotner.  Spotlight sessions are highlights of key technologies that will be discussed in depth throughout the week.

  • Jeff Josten - DB2 10 Technical Overview
  • Berni Schiefer – Saving Your Company Money with DB2 LUW
  • Curt Cotner – Application Development

As usual, there are also free certification exams.  This is how I first got to know IDUG, when I ran the certification program.  This year each attendee is allowed to take 3 exams for free.  That is a $600 value!  Make sure you study before you go to get the best value.  See an older blog entry I wrote for some Guidance: Certification 101.  For the exams that are available, see this website.

The Vendor Exhibit has more than 20 vendors that you can explore.  A fun event IDUG is doing to help you meet the vendors is the “Passport to Prizes”.  You need to visit certain vendors to get a stamp on your card.  The completed card is your ticket to a draw where you could win some cool prizes.  Believe me, the prizes are much better than the free stuff you may pick up!  One year a friend of mine won a Wii!   I don’t know what the prizes are this year, but it is fun to get the stamps and even more fun to win.  Good luck!

Vendor Solution Presentations (VSPs) are where vendors can showcase their suite of products.  Don’t think of VSPs as marketing pitches… but rather in depth talks about the solutions being offered by the vendor.  I see 16 sessions listed on the website!

Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are user community meetings where you can take part in discussions about successes, tips, and more with other users and subject matter experts. There are 10 SIGs scheduled.  See the website.


Besides what was mentioned already, there are four networking events set up:

  • Exhibit Hall Welcome.  This year the sponsor is DBI.
  • Networking Event

Dine Around sessions where you can have dinner with popular speakers at an interesting local restaurant  You pay for your own meal.  Know that this has become a very popluar event, so you should sign up as soon as you can.    Dine Around – look for the signup sheet immediately so you can get with your favourite speaker or restaurant OR signup on the web at this page.  The spots get filled really fast!

  • Bubba Gump Shrimp:
    • Group 1: Terry Purcell and Daniel Luksetich 
    • Group 2: Burt Vialpando and Rebecca Bond
  • California Pizza Kitchen:
    • Group 1: Judy Ruby Brown and Phil Grainger
    • Group 2: Chris Eaton and Scott Hayes
  • P.F. Chang’s:
    • Group 1: Bonnie Baker and Sheryl Larsen
    • Group 2: Roger Miller and John Campbell
  • Roy’s Hawaiian:
    • David Beulke and Craig Mullins

There are a few offers that you should be aware of.  

IDUG Mentor Program

If you’ve attended 3 or more conferences, you can sign up as a mentor and bring a new attendee at an 80% discount.


DB2Night show special offer $50 off conference fee for show attendees.  Listen to the replay of today’s show to get the details on how to get a discount.


Moderators are needed, so if you are interested in volunteering, your efforts will be very appreciated.


See some of my previous posts about IDUG, most notably the two guest entries by Rebecca Bond:

Rebecca Bond: IDUG NA – The Geeky Vacation!

Budgeting for IDUG North America conference as viewed by the DB2 Locksmith

IDUG = International DB2 User Group


I think tomorrow I’ll have a guest blog by a DB2 for z/OS DBA to help you choose appropriate sessions.



There won’t be a bookstore on site at this event.  Instead, order the books you need directly from the publisher at a discount.  Members of IDUG get 45% off IBM Press books.


I’m trying to work out a special deal with MC Press on their collection of Certification Guides as well.  We’ll be launching two new titles at the conference, so watch here for details.



IBM InterConnect 2015 from a Data Perspective

svisser1 Tags:  analytics mobile conference cloud ibminterconnect books bigdata 9,298 Views
Another great IBM conference is around the corner.  This one is called InterConnect and is focused on cloud and mobile technologies.  Since data and analytics play in both areas, you'll find great sessions to increase your skills and knowledge by attending.
The conference takes place in Las Vegas, February 22-26.  I think most of us in the north east are already tired of winter, so a conference in a warmer climate is very welcome this time of year!

The Premier Cloud & Mobile Conference
February 22-26, 2015
Las Vegas NV

In today's digital economy, the impact of Cloud, Mobile, DevOps and Security on business is pervasive. Cloud, the great equalizer. Mobile, the activation point. DevOps, the culmination of innovation. All underpinned by Security.

From a data perspective, you'll find many options available:
Speakers: Beth Smith from IBM and Jeff Charette from Menuat
Organizations are looking for new ways to hone their engagement with clients through compelling web and mobile apps, and anticipate their clients‘ next move and optimize their operations with big data and analytics. Come join us for an evening of entertainment with a celebrity host to learn how data, when infused into all interactions and decision making, provides us all with new ways to create value and transform experiences. Sit back and have a drink, meet someone new and learn something unexpected. 
KEY-6441: The New z13: Redefining Digital Business Through Integration of Cloud, Mobile, and Analytics
Speakers: Beth Smith and others.
Learn how the next generation of IBM z Systems is architected to meet the needs of your digital business. While operational excellence is still a focus, IT investment is shifting to value creation, service excellence and better client experience required in this digital era. Digital business fuels enterprise growth, and is vital for engaging clients and new prospects in new and better ways – empowering them through data and information, personalization and 24x7 access. New technology, innovations and solutions will be introduced that build on the strengths and core values of the IBM Mainframe platform and provide new opportunities and possibilities for growth and progress. 


In the Expo, you'll find the IBM Analytics Zone.  Here you will find the following pedestals: 
  • Manage and analyze Data - in the cloud and on premises 
    • Featured products: IBM dashDB, DB2 with BLU Acceleration, Informix, PureData
  • Integrate and govern data – for increased data confidence
    • Featured products: IBM InfoSphere Optim, Guardium, MDM, information integration
  • Refine data in the cloud – for data-aware applications
    • Featured product:  IBM DataWorks data refinery  
  • Analyze big data – at rest and in motion
    • Featured products:  IBM InfoSphere Streams, BigInsights–enterprise-grade Hadoop
  • Leverage NoSQL database-as-a-service – in the cloud, always on  
    • Featured product:  IBM Cloudant
  • Build data-driven apps – in the cloud and on premises
    • Featured product:  IBM Cloud data services

Attend an Expo Theatre Session to learn the latest from an expert:

Breakout Sessions 
Book Signings
There are a few books that have just published that are launching at this conference.  Be the first to get a copy of the book and have it signed by the author!

Cognitive Computing and Big Data Analytics

by Judith Hurwitz, Marcia Kauffman, and Adrian Bowles.

You can pick up this book at the IBM InterConnect Conference.  Also, be sure to attend Judith's talk and have her sign your copy of the book.  She'll be speaking at the Expo Cloud Theatre on Tuesday, February 24 from 6-6:30 pm (Vegas time).  

Big Data Revolution: What farmers, doctors and insurance agents teach us about discovering big data patterns

Rob will be at the IBM InterConnect bookstore on Wednesday February 25 from 10:30 – 11am (Vegas time).


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Flashbook: IBM Cognos Analytics and Cloud Computing

svisser1 Tags:  cloud book signing iod2010 iodgc cognos 3 Comments 9,270 Views
IBM Cognos Analytics and Cloud Computing: Best Practices for Deploying Cognos Business Intelligence to the IBM Cloud

by Anant Jhingran, Stephan Jou, William Lee, Thanh Pham, Biraj Saha


This book introduces cloud computing, workloads in cloud computing, analytics as a service, and its implementation using Cognos Software and provides guidance and considerations for your cloud solution, such as “Where should the data be located” and “How many images should I create?”  Step-by-step instructions on how to install, configure, secure and test a Cognos Business Intelligence deployment in the IBM Cloud are provided to help you get to a point where you have a saved private instance to an image that you can then deploy in minutes on demand.

Learn how to graduate from single images to multiple images and more complicated topologies that are better suited for production workloads and how to secure your Cognos cloud solution.

More advanced topics include moving from a single image to multiple images, scalability and performance, and how to plan for scaling to ensure a high performing solution.  Finally, tip are provided to ensure that your Cognos BI cloud solution is highly available and handles failover scenarios.


The Best of the Best Bundle

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Discover the best of the best with this collection of top-selling books from IBM Press.

New to DB2? IBM Press has an easy, visual guide to introduce you to every concept behind DB2, step-by-step, including installation, configuration, objects, database instances, storage, connectivity, security, performance, backup and recovery, SQL fundamentals, and much more: Understanding DB2: Learning Visually with Examples
By Raul Chong, Clara Liu, Sylvia Qi, Dwaine Snow
Full price: $59.99

Loving Linux? Here's your indispensable guide to maximizing Linux system and application performance, with easy-to-understand examples based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server: Performance Tuning for Linux Servers
By Sandra Johnson, Gerrit Huizenga, Badari Pulavarty
Full price: 54.99

Bundle information and price: ISBN: 0132227673; $78.30

If you become an IBM Press member, your price is $73.95. This is a savings of $41.03 if you buy the bundle rather than each book individually.

If this bundle doesn't appeal to you, check out one of these:

The Foundation for Certification Bundle

Essentials for DBAs Bundle

z/OS and Loving It Bundle

I haven't yet figured out whether these bundles and their prices will disappear at some point or not. I'm checking into it and will update this post.

Susan[Read More]

Big Data Revolution: What farmers, doctors and insurance agents teach us about discovering big data patterns

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If you are attending the IBM InterConnect Conference this month, you can pick up this book at a discount and have it signed by the author:

Big Data Revolution: What farmers, doctors and insurance agents teach us about discovering big data patterns

This is a collaborative work by IBM Vice President of Big Data Products, Rob Thomas and Oxford Research Fellow, Patrick McSharry.  
They wrote the book in a story format that demonstrates the power and potential of Big Data within the business realm.  Research has shown that stories are one of the best ways to connect with readers.  I've heard a few of Rob's stories and can tell you that months later I still remember them.
Big Data has been mentioned more often than any other technical term in the past 5 years,  but what does it actually mean?  By reading this book, you'll be guided through tried-and-true methodologies for getting more out of data, and will learn how to use it to your utmost advantage. 
Big Data keeps evolving, and this book also describes the major trends emerging in the area.  You'll hear about the pitfalls and triumphs being experienced, and will learn the many considerations surrounding Big Data, and how you can make better decisions by analyzing your own data.
Rob will be at the IBM InterConnect bookstore on Wednesday February 25 from 10:30 – 11am (Vegas time).  
Read more about this book directly from Rob via his blog entries:
Congratulations on your book Rob!  I'm looking forward to reading it once I get my hands on it!!


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