Innovate 2012 - Next Now!
timhahn 100000F0AC Comment (1) Visits (3981)
After a shortened week in the office, I packed my bags again and headed off to Orlando, FL for the annual Innovate 2012 conference. I arrived late Saturday night in order to be here for a full day of customer meetings on Sunday.
Today, Monday 4 June, marked the official opening keynote address for Innovate 2012, led by Gina Poole and Kristof Kloeckner. The theme for this year's conference is "Next Now" - the implication being that software development teams are ready and able to create next generation software now, with no barriers to innovation across whatever platforms the teams are working on.
I had the pleasure of leading a Birds-of-a-Feather (BoF) session today titled "Agile on the Mainframe - Oxymoron or not?". Thanks to a packed room of attendees, we had a lively discussion debunking this false thought. The group agreed that it is possible, and in most cases desirable, to employ agile practices regardless of target platform for the software being created. Further, the group indicated that tools are not the biggest issue to overcome in transforming a team to using agile practices. Rather, it is getting the teams to embrace changes in process. This aspect of rolling out agile development practices is best addressed through careful introduction of agile methods - which methods to start with depends on the team itself.
The group also acknowledged that several recent capabilities from IBM, notably Rational Development and Test Environment for System z and Rational Team Concert, both with specific features for mainframe development and employing agile development practices, can help teams adopt agile methods.
Later in the day, I participated on a panel of experts, answering questions from the audience related to IBM's Enterprise Modernization tools. There were many great questions posed to the panel which consisted of experts from across IBM SWG with an emphasis on z/OS middleware, compilers, and development tools. Continuous integration, "DevOps", and applying new tools to existing applications were top of mind for people in the audience for this session.
I'm looking forward to Day 2 of the conference tomorrow - more product announcements, a speaker slot for myself, and hosting another experts panel discussion are on my agenda.