I've been focused lately on helping kids learn to code, guiding grade-school students in coding activities at schools and public libraries, as I believe coding skills and experience, as well as an understanding of general computer science concepts, is critical to the success and competitiveness of tomorrow's young professionals. Not just future developers and IT professionals, but nearly all professionals benefit from understanding how technology works and can be applied to given challenges and opportunities. Those who learn to code also build self-confidence and enhance key traits such as persistence and problem-solving skills, and develop computational thinking skills.
“Computational thinking involves solving problems, designing systems, and understanding human behavior,” notes Jeannette Wing, who popularized the term “computational thinking” in part with her 2006 article in the journal Communications of the ACM. Computational thinking, Wing wrote, "represents a universally applicable attitude and skill set everyone, not just computer scientists, would be eager to learn and use." In other words, Wing wrote, "the use of computational concepts, methods and tools would transform the very conduct of every discipline, profession and sector. Someone with the ability to use computation effectively would have an edge over someone without."
I'd imagine most developerWorks community members already recognize that the value of learning coding, computer science, and computational thinking transcends professions well beyond software developers and even IT professionals. What's encouraging is how this perspective has spread broadly to the general population. Increasingly, parents want -- even demand -- that their children learn such things, and K-12 teachers seek to provide their students with opportunities to learn such things (often despite challenges that mandated curriculum can create, making it difficult to find time amidst all the required lessons and tests to insert coding and computer science learning). As I've proposed launching activities with public and private grade schools and public libraries, I've been met with strong and growing support and appreciation. Just one example: When launching a new coding club this spring at one local school, I received 50% more registration requests than I could accept.
For those of you who want to help kids learn coding and computer science (or help others including teachers and parents do so) -- and for any youngsters who may be reading this themselves, I encourage you to use the following helpful resources:
Scratch-- While Code.org emphasizes learning coding concepts, Scatch focuses on creativity and advancing technology as something kids learn to use as a tool of active creation rather than primarily a means of passive consumption or entertainment. This emphasis is reflected in the Scratch slogan: "“Create stories, games, and animations. Share with others around the world.” In some ways -- the drag-and-drop development environment, as well as some tutorials -- Scratch is similar to Code.org. But Scratch provides more of a free-form, wide open environment vs. a highly structured set of tasks and puzzles, fostering creativity and encourages users to share their creations with others, who can then "remix" the shared apps, modifying, extending, and customizing them as they like. Scratch also lets users download and install an editor so they can work on projects without an internet connection (and whenever site maintenance issues cause the online Scratch editor to be unavailable).
I look forward to sharing more resources and experiences that I hope will help more kids learn to code. Whether they become IT professionals or not, our next generation will benefit greatly from the experience.
This week developerWorks turns 12 years old. As we consider our future and how to best serve our ever-growing community, it also is helpful to take a moment to reflect on the past, and no better time than an anniversary or birthday.
IBM had a much bigger milestone this year -- its 100th birthday. Last week, alluding to the importance of evolution and change, IBM Chairman and CEO Sam Palmisano quoted Tom Watson, Jr., who, when asked a half a century ago how a company can live 50 years, said, "I believe that if an organization is to meet the challenges of a changing world, it must be prepared to change everything about itself but its core beliefs."
In many ways developerWorks has been prepared to change everything, all the while retaining its core beliefs. Changes have included a dramatic broadening and evolving of our topics, the transformation into a social business with an increasingly engaged community members who form groups, share comments and questions, blog, and otherwise interact and communicate, complementing our many how-to articles and tutorials, code, downloads, and other technical resources. We've expanded well beyond text and images to include demos, podcasts, video, and other new media. And at the same time we have reaffirmed our already strong focus on the fundamentals, the core beliefs that remain as critical to our success today as they were 12 years ago: The wants and needs of developers and IT professionals. In short, we know relevance is key. It is a prerequisite to our success in reaching and serving our community.
To help us become even more relevant, we look to guidance from industry analysts, community surveys, trends and web traffic. We talk continuously with our subject matter experts both inside and outside of IBM. We attend conferences and other industry events and talk to more experts. We talk with students and faculty. And we pore over your comments and suggestions on developerWorks.
That's already a robust set of input. Yet, as we consider which topics and technologies to prioritize, I believe we would benefit from even more input from some of you. That's why today I'm inviting you to join a new developerWorks community advisory panel. This is your opportunity to help shape developerWorks and help us be more relevant and valuable for you -- and for millions of your peers in the developer and IT professional community. Panelists will be sent occasional questions and have opportunities to participate in surveys and share your input. Interested? Send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org with answers to the following questions:
How does developerWorks help you today? Specific examples are encouraged.
How can developerWorks become even more valuable and relevant for you?
What makes you particularly qualified to be an opinion leader panelist for developerWorks?
What is your developerWorks display name?
I look forward to another year -- and also to your participation in shaping our future.
The opportunity to celebrate a 100-year anniversary doesn't come often. IBM strives to celebrate its 100 years in business (official birthday is today, June 16) properly -- not with lavish parties, but with a focus on IBM giving back to and serving the communities across the globe. Read more about the IBM celebration of service and how IBMers are joining clients, partners and friends to improve communities worldwide.
As I consider this celebration from the perspective of my role as Editor in Chief of developerWorks, I can't help but think about what's technically cool and impressive from IBM that also serves not only the business or the Smarter Planet campaign but also improves communities worldwide, and one thing jumps to my mind: The World Community Grid, whose mission is "to create the world's largest public computing grid to tackle projects that benefit humanity"; it "depends upon individuals collectively contributing their unused computer time to change the world for the better." IBM supports this effort with hardware, software, and technical services. It's a terrific example of how technology supports such key goals as clean water, clean energy, and cures for diseases such as cancer and AIDS. And they're looking for new research projects that can use grid technology to benefit humanity -- so if you have an idea, submit a proposal.
The World Community Grid is but one example of IBM's impressive technology and its efforts to benefit communities worldwide. Beyond the contributions of individuals (such as the developerWorks team members pictured here who were helping feed the hungry yesterday; see also the local press coverage showing how hundreds of IBMers packed 100,000 meals in under two hours), IBM's products and technologies show that the Smarter Planet initiative is more than mere marketing. We're showcasing some of IBM's noteworthy products and activities over the last 100 years as "Icons of Progress." developerWorks newsletter editor John Swanson calls out a few icons that may be particularly of interest to the developerWorks community in his new blog. (Thanks to Daryl Pereira for helping cull that list -- and also thanks to Daryl for his blog encouraging others to share stories and activities from the IBM Centennial.)
Here's to making the next 100 years worth celebrating even more than the first 100.
More than 7,000 of your peers are attending this week's big IBM event: Pulse 2011, a service management conference and expo dedicated to showing how Integrated Service Management (ISM) can help organizations design, deliver, and manage innovative services across business and IT boundaries. The focus includes analytics, systems management, sensors and security -- and how you can use software, hardware and services to integrate your data and systems, automate IT for greater productivity and secure your intelligent IT infrastructures. In other words, it's about helping you adopt, and benefit from, Smarter Computing (Indeed, Smarter Computing is a topic of substantial discussion during Pulse).
Whether you're attending or not, you can tap a wealth of Pulse event resources -- and also join the new developerWorks community dedicated to integrated service management, Service Management Connect, which was announced at Pulse.
For starters, take a look at our collection of live streaming and just-recorded videos from Pulse -- including keynote sessions as well as interviews with IBM leaders, partners and IT experts live from the show floor with Scott Laningham, Producer and Host of the developerWorks podcast show:
SunBay won based on its multifaceted use of developerWorks to improve collaboration with 30 people across IBM Switzerland and IBM France, keeping everyone in the loop to streamline Service Provider Delivery Environment (SPDE) Framework validation. SunBay tapped the broad array of community social features in dW, including message boards, activities, blogs, files, bookmarks, and the iPhone app to support their business. The results included not only being quickly verified as meeting the IBM SPDE Framework requirements, but also a strong pipeline of joint IBM-SunBay customers.
IBM partners -- and all IT businesses and individuals -- can benefit from developerWorks and our community by using our social business tools to better communicate and collaborate, privately as well as publicly. We offer not only a rich collection of how-to articles and tutorials, not only answers to your questions and input from experts via our blogs and discussion forums. Our broad set of community features let you create, communicate, collaborate, innovate -- in short, developerWorks community features are ready to help you embrace social business -- and thus help individuals, groups and partners alike drive business results.
Today developerWorks unveils an update to our design. Key features include a simplified site navigation, via a new masthead and footer on nearly every developerWorks page as well as a much improved search engine -- so that you'll now more easily find all developerWorks materials, including our community materials as well as our professionally developed, award-winning how-to articles and tutorials.
While the masthead and footer stand out as most visible change, the update is much richer, and based on substantial user research.
Now you can also:
Sign in to developerWorks from the masthead on any developerWorks page, and quickly access your personalized dashboard from the masthead menu. (Select your display name and expand to reveal shortcuts to your profile, personalized community homepage, and a summary of any pending colleague requests or recently received notifications.)
Syndicate your favorite developerWorks content or URLs more easily, via persistent share tools in the footer.
Easily follow developerWorks on Facebook or Twitter. (These options are also available in the footer of every page now.)
You'll also see many improvements to some of your favorite developerWorks destinations, such as a simplified developerWorks home page and updates to developerWorks Events, Evaluation software, and Community main pages. We've updated the information in About developerWorks, New to Community, Feeds and syndication and more, and even added a brand new Technical topics landing page to get more info on the IBM product families, IBM solutions and open standards we cover on developerWorks.
With this design, developerWorks also becomes among the first sites within IBM to incorporate elements of the new ibm.com design that marks the company's Centennial anniversary. (To learn more about IBM's 100-year history, see the related IBM Centennial Press kit and the IBM100 site.)
Take a moment to explore our updated web site design -- and please share your feedback via a comment below.
The editors at developerWorks reflected on their work over the past 12 months and selected some of their favorite, most noteworthy content. This small sample of our 2010 how-to content showcases the variety of technical topics and disciplines we cover week after week, as well as the quality of our professionally developed articles and tutorials. Happy Holidays!
Java technology zone technical podcast series, launched this year, lets you listen to insightful conversations with technical experts. Taking the time to read an in-depth, code-heavy article can be difficult, even if it's about a topic that's critical to your day job. This podcast series provides a new way to get information from the sources you trust most.
Build a digital book with EPUB has consistently been among our most popular articles, month after month, and employs an effective step-by-step approach for automating EPUB creation using DocBook and Python.
My sincerest thanks to a great extended team, including the expert authors both inside and outside of IBM -- and including you, the community of millions of developers and IT professionals who rely on developerWorks each month. A special thanks to those who participate in the developerWorks community by posting to our technical discussion forums, rate and comment on articles, bookmarking and tagging content, and using our other community tools.
As noted in the official press release from AMI, the awards were designed "to recognize social media efforts that result in tangible, measurable business value." Winners are chosen according to a systematic methodology that involved analyst reviews, interviews, primary research, optimization surveys and user experience.
These recent social media awards reflect how developerWorks has effectively grown and evolved over our 11-year history to incorporate new technologies and tools so that we can best serve your evolving wants and needs. Whether you're new to developerWorks or a longtime visitor, I encourage all developers and IT professionals who haven't already done so to join and participate in the developerWorks community to tap our rich set forums, blogs, wikis, groups, and more -- and see firsthand why we won the two recent social media awards, as well the many other awards detailed in our virtual trophy case.
Late last week, Forrester announced that developerWorks won its Groundswell 2010 award in the business-to-business "supporting" category. As noted in the official press release from Forrester Research, winners were honored "for excellence in effective use of social technologies to advance an organizational or business goal."
Commenting about the awards, Josh Bernoff, senior vice president of idea development at Forrester and co-author of Groundswell and Empowered, said, "Once again, the entrants and winners for this year's Forrester Groundswell Awards amazed us. We were particularly impressed with the diverse and effective social and mobile strategies that organizations are now using to reach consumers, business companies, and their own employees."
Today at developerWorks we were introduced to our new Director, Alice Chou. Alice is a terrific fit for us, with extensive experience in the industry. Most recently she was the Director of WebSphere Development for Extreme Transaction Processing (XTP), Cloud & Open Source, responsible for bringing emerging technologies to market, including WebSphere Cloudburst Appliance and dynamic caching products. She previously spent time in Silicon Valley working with software companies, including startups, and is no stranger to SOA and open source. Welcome, Alice!
Today developerWorks turns 11 years old. We've matured quite a bit since our launch in September of 1999. But as recent activity suggests, we don't rest on our laurels.
In the past year we've launched new sections dedicated to Cloud computing and Industries, and we've greatly enhanced or online community offerings to provide more of the sorts of tools for professional collaboration and communication among developers and IT professionals. We continue to evolve to best serve our community. In fact, we're getting ready to share some finding from our latest survey of developers and IT professionals, which affirms many of our recent activities as well as offering added insight regarding future direction and priorities. (Stay tuned for details.) Ultimately, while our fundamental focus on our community's wants and needs and on open standards and open technologies remains constant, we continue to innovate, to become smarter and to help our community become smarter as we all, ideally, work together to develop a smarter planet.
For our 10-year anniversary we went all out. Perhaps will do the same for year 15 or 20. Meantime, if you missed the celebration last year, take a peek at our big 10-year birthday splash including lists of top content from our first decade, interviews with dW's creators, a timeline of milestones, and more.
Personally, I get a real boost every time I hear a story about how developerWorks has helped the community of developers and IT professionals. I'm also regularly striving to better understand what works best and is most valued among the many things developerWorks does (so that we know what to do more of).
For example, dW community member "Boon amal (Boona)" writes, "WOW, I'm so glad I found your tutorial; it's made my life so much easier! ODFpy tutorials are scarce, and great ones are non-existent. Thank you for taking the time to create this, you really saved the day."
Another example: dW community member "Martin Kirouac (MartinKirouac-IMConsultant)" says the article "DB2 for Linux, UNIX, and Windows database administration" (authored by Samuel Poon, Fraser McArthur and Priti Desai) is "Great! A really nice goto article in my everyday job," and adds, "Thanks a lot for publishing this."
Feedback like this inspires me (and I bet many others on the developerWorks team, and of course our authors). It's great to know that our content and resources are not only helping solve a fleeting problem on occasion, but also providing significant and ongoing value, day in and day out. This sort of input -- received just recently about content last updated in 2009 and 2008, respectively -- also reflects the merit to retaining not-so-new content, which can be quite useful even months or years after publication. And comments such as these help guide our teams: We seek to replicate successes like this to better serve your wants and needs. So input like this really helps us help you.
Speaking of you: What about you? You're in the trenches, coding, architecting, debugging, upgrading, administering, designing, troubleshooting, deploying, and otherwise working on today's real-world projects. You're a representative of the developerWorks community whom we strive to serve. You know the answers. So please: Share your story. Tell us how developerWorks has helped you--whether it led to a new job, solved a simple problem, or taught you something you wanted or needed to learn. Heck, even if you simply have a favorite article or tutorial, you're regularly checking a dW group or discussion forum, or want to praise a particular author whom you appreciate, we'd much welcome your comments.
So post a comment below. We look forward to hearing from you. In fact, we may follow up to get more details about the most interesting stories: You may even be interviewed by developerWorks podcast host Scott Laningham! He loves a good story.
developerWorks editors have assembled, collectively, the Top 100 articles and other items from 2009. While it may not be the traditional "12 Days of Christmas" gift list, we think our collection is quite impressive (as well as greater in number). You'll find nearly all of our top 100 highlighted in various places on our final home page update of 2009, but to make sure you don't overlook any (and to round out the list), I've collected them all here. Without further ado:
On the 12th month of '09, developerWorks gave to us...
But wait -- there's more! Not being able to leave well enough alone, I bump the tally up to a prime 107 by adding my personal bonus list of 7 top developerWorks items -- including some significant accomplishments and milestones -- from 2009:
The update of our entire developerWorks articles collection -- more than 11,000 articles -- to employ a more dynamic, interactive design.
The steady and strong set of new materials week after week again this year, with more than 1,000 new resources -- including more than 800 technical how-to articles and tutorials, 150 trials and demos, and dozens of podcasts and videos.
My personal milestone of 10 years with IBM developerWorks -- and the privilege and honor of working with such a talented and dedicated professional team throughout the 10 years.
The fact that most developerWorks team members can take a well-deserved break during the last days of the year, reflect on 2009's accomplishments and highlight some of our best content and resources, and recharge and plan for 2010 and beyond.
Thanks to everyone who helps make our hard work worthwhile -- whether by reading one or many of our how-to articles, commenting or asking questions in our discussion forums and blogs and elsewhere on My developerWorks, rating our tutorials and content, downloading a trial or trying a demo, or otherwise. We're happy to have helped serve your wants and needs in 2009 -- and will continue to do so in 2010 and beyond.
As developerWorks celebrates 10 years, I reflect on how things have changed ... and how they will continue to change. At the same time, I see as clearly now as 10 years ago that our imperative focus on our community's wants and needs and on open standards and open technologies remains constant, and as important as ever.
In my personal life, in the past ten years I have moved to a different hometown three times. I started, and at last completed, a master's degree. I taught a university course. I got married. I become a father. No doubt I've grown and evolved personally and professionally. Yet all along, I've remained the same person, and all along I've kept the same job at developerWorks.
Similarly, developerWorks during the same 10 years has evolved and changed quite a bit, too. Throughout all the changes, including the incredible growth of technologies we cover, the ways in which we cover them, and the number and variety of people we reach, we have kept the same fundamental goals of serving the wants and needs of developers and IT professionals with a focus on open standards and open technologies.
I've relied in part on this blog as a way to connect and communicate, so it seems fitting to look back at what I've posted here. Reviewing all of my blog entries to date, I quickly notice that the most notable entries also happen to be those that prompted the most comments. Based on that, here are my favorites:
Remembering Heidi Carson This tribute to one of our editors, who'd like many of us originally worked as a technology journalist before joining dW. We miss you, Heidi.
As I've said before, I'm honored to continue to be a part of this terrific team of dW colleagues and this thriving community as we celebrate our 10th birthday -- and pleased to see us extend our efforts with My developerWorks to more fully embrace the power of social computing and online communities, and with content that will help us make this planet smarter (including more content and resources focused on key open technologies such as cloud computing).
Be sure to take a look at the various "Top 10"-type lists from various developerWorks editors, and the various interviews with the people who created and launched and supported developerWorks from the beginning. And as always -- just as we stated when we launched even the beta of developerWorks a few months before Sept 1999: We welcome your thoughts and ideas. Please, don't be shy.
For example, developerWorks has dedicated significant attention and resources this year to key tools and technologies that enable a smarter planet -- technologies such as Cloud computing (this week alone we're publishing several new articles on Cloud computing), Social Tools, Green IT, and more.
And perhaps as substantial as any offering from developerWorks to date is the new My developerWorks, a.k.a. "the world's geekiest social network" -- a place where developers and IT professionals help one another become smarter. After all, no single person or company has all the answers, and smarter people will go a long way toward creating a smarter planet. With My developerWorks, IBM strives to connect the global community of software developers and make it easier for them to create new technologies based on open standards such as Java technology, Linux and XML.
IBM maintains a significant investment in developerWorks because we recognize the critical role developers and IT professionals play in business, and more broadly, in shaping our planet. Whatever the challenge -- reducing the time and fuel wasted in traffic; providing cleaner water and more efficient food supplies; establishing more intelligent and optimized energy grids; you name it -- IT professionals are bound to play a key role in transforming technologies, businesses, cities and governments, homes and farms, cars, planes and trains to address each challenge and thus make the world a better place. Clearly, one way to work smarter is to more effectively tap into the collective intelligence of your peers, and to collaborate to solve common problems. My developerWorks helps you collaborate and learn from each other. And more broadly, developerWorks continues to add to its collection of thousands of professionally developed how-to articles and tutorials (with recent emphasis on key topics such as Cloud computing) to help you build your skills, work smarter, and master the open, standards-based technologies and products that you employ as you help make the world smarter.
Today is my 10-year anniversary as an IBMer. I can't say I predicted this day 10 years ago. When I joined IBM in 1999 to help launch developerWorks as founding Editor-in-Chief, my skills and experience (an English major and Journalism minor, with years of experience not in engineering, but with print technology magazines and then pioneering in Web publishing with IDG's SunWorld Online and JavaWorld) hardly fit the mold of most IBM hires. But 10 years later, I am pleased to be able to celebrate this milestone -- and all the more pleased to do so via the new blogging environment in our just-launched My developerWorks -- what ReadWriteWeb calls the world's geekiest social network.
I'm also happy to see developerWorks now approaching its 10-year anniversary. (Look for more regarding developerWorks' 10th birthday in a few months.) I'm honored to continue to be a part of this terrific team of dW colleagues and this thriving community -- and pleased to see us extend our efforts again in 2009 with My developerWorks to more fully embrace the power of social computing and online communities.
One of the great things about the IBM Rational Software Conference (formerly the Rational Software Development Conference, or RSDC) is the fact that you can get the equivalent of an entire year's worth of training, all in one week. Plus catch up with colleagues and peers across the globe whom you otherwise rarely get to see -- and meet new people who may prove valuable (whether for solving technical problems or being a key contact who helps with your career or becoming a lifelong friend).
The teams putting together this year's Rational Software Conference (May 31-June 4 at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin resort in Orlando, FL) recently shared with me an impressive list of new reasons to attend this year. Among them: a new "Application Security and Compliance" track, new "Enterprise architecture and SOA content," a new "Software Lifecycle Integration and Governance" track, and the addition of "Innovation 2009: Telelogic User Group Conference" -- which means you get the benefits of two conferences for the price of one.
Whatever your goal may be (successfully navigating a global economic downturn, making a smarter planet ... you name it), one key ingredient is communications, which can include many components: The flow and distribution of information. Establishing and nurturing connections with others. Collaboration. Today you have more resources than ever to help. And today your customers, partners, clients -- everyone -- expects more than ever in terms of what you offer to help them. That's why developerWorks is putting so much focus lately on social tools and technologies. Check out our Social Tools space to see our latest collection of social tools content and resources -- and find out how you can employ social tools and technologies to be more successful in your software development and IT projects. We strive to help you make wise and effective use of social tools.
We view social tools as one of this year's major developerWorks themes -- and one that ties into the "My developerWorks" efforts currently underway (for more details, listen to recent podcast on the topic of My dW). But truth be told, developerWorks has always been focused on serving the wants and needs of developers and IT professionals, and thus we always focused on community and sharing vs. talking "at" you. From the beginning, we recognized the importance of having experts in the broad IT community (not just IBM) contribute how-to articles and tutorials, and it meant providing ways for you to communicate with us -- and with each other: social tools and technologies such as discussion forums, feedback emails and forms, focus groups, live events. In April 2004 we at developerWorks helped lead IBM into the realm of blogs, and shortly afterward began offering podcasts that include discussions not just with the authors of our featured content (both IBMers and non-IBMers) and IBM leaders and experts (Steve Mills, Danny Sabbah, Grady Booch, Scott Ambler, ...), but also with experts outside of IBM, such as Tim Berners-Lee, John Maddog Hall, Chris Anderson, Jimmy Wales, and Tim O'Reilly. We continue to look for more ways to extend communications among all parties. We have always wanted you to communicate to us -- and to one another, too. Today we are focused on the social tools and collaboration and community more than ever, and that's reflected by our rich collection of related content and resources (again, check out the related Social Tools space, and keep coming back to the dW home page for new content and resources). And look for a major "My developerWorks" update in the coming weeks![Read More]
Congratulations to the entire developerWorks Japan team, including Koh'ichi Miyagawa, developerWorks Japan Managing Editor, as well as to the worldwide developerWorks team members who have supported dW Japan.[Read More]
But despite all of our growth and evolution, our core developerWorks mission still remains the same: To serve the wants and needs of developers and IT professionals.
We could not be successful without support from many many individuals and groups, including the dedicated staff of developerWorks; IBM management and executives, who provide strong leadership and commitment, and recognize the key role developerWorks plays for the company as well as for the community; and perhaps most of all, the millions of developers and IT professionals across the globe, both outside and inside IBM -- who not only visit the dW site and read articles and tutorials and download trial code, but also write articles and tutorials and tips, develop and share sample code, post questions and answers to our forums and comments to our blogs, create and manage community spaces on specific technical topics, and in large part make developerWorks an award-winning community that is so valuable to so many people, and in so many ways. Thanks to you all.[Read More]
We've had quite a few questions submitted already for our upcoming podcast interviews with VIPs such as Steve Mills, Grady Booch, and Danny Sabbah. I'll be interviewing Danny, Grady, and Steve (and quite a few others too) at the Rational Software Development Conference June 1-5.
If you have a question you'd like one or more of these interviewees to answer, it's not too late! Please submit your questions for Steve, Grady, and Danny, as well as other executives and technology leaders -- including (as of today): Buell Duncan, Beth Friday, Scott Hebner, Hayden Lindsey, Stephanie Martin, Martin Nally, Walker Royce.
I'm excited to see my lineup of podcast interviews during the Rational Software Development Conference June 1-5. I'm also happy to offer the dW community (that's you, dear reader) the opportunity to submit questions for me to ask of these VIPs, who'll be sitting down with me for interviews during RSDC.
developerWorks will again be at the Rational Software Development Conference this year -- June 1-5 in Orlando, Florida. I again have the honor of doing a presentation about developerWorks, this year joined by dW Rational Community Manager Marc Siegel. I'll also again be conducting interviews at the conference. This year I've scheduled interviews with some VIPs at IBM -- and I invite you to suggest questions!
This week I'm focusing on gathering questions for Steve Mills. Many of you already know Steve runs IBM's Software Group -- he's the Senior Vice President and Group Executive of IBM Software Group. What you may not realize is that he is the leader of the world's largest software development organization, with some 24,000 developers, widely distributed across the globe. Sounds like someone worth talking to, eh? We plan to do just that, and we want to ask him the best of your questions. Have any? Please post your questions for Steve Mills here -- simply follow this link to the related dW forum thread (and perhaps read the questions others have posted), then click on "Reply to this thread" (upper left of page) to submit your own question(s). I'll ask as many of your good questions as I can when I talk to him at RSDC.
Also, if you haven't already heard it, check out our new developerWorks podcast about RSDC, in which dW's own Scott Laningham interviews Scott Hebner, Rational VP of Marketing and Strategy, for a quick preview of this year's conference. After listening and hearing more about this year's highlights (including big keynotes from folks like Steve Mills, Danny Sabbah and Grady Booch, guest speaker William Shatner, comedian Mitch Fatel, and Grammy-winning rock band The Wallflowers ... more than 300 technical sessions ... hands-on technical workshops ... complimentary IBM certification classes ... technology demonstrations ...) I'll bet you'll want to register now -- and see these execs (as well as many technical experts, and peers) in person.[Read More]
Out of the box, this community area enables better transparency about the evolution of Rational products, what's coming next and current priorities, and also will help us more quickly identify and address product enhancements that you and your peers submit.
The developerWorks team was pleased to be able to help when Rational came to us with this request, recognizing the experience and expertise dW has in building community and our being the primary IBM place for developers and IT professionals. I view this as a strong example of how the developerWorks community works well: Members learning the latest about key products and technologies, while at the same time sharing input and requests that enhance the products that the community uses, giving IBM (and each other) another way to listen to and better understand and respond to the community and your wants and needs. We hope to extend and improve upon this model in the coming months.[Read More]
This week developerWorks employed a new, interactive "mouseover" design treatment on the developerWorks home page. This enhancement displays the descriptions of each week's featured content when you point your mouse at a title (rather than showing all descriptions simultaneously).
As reported in Computerworld this morning, "IBM today opened its Jazz.net open-source community to anyone who wants to provide feedback on the technology, which is intended to help improve collaboration among software development teams." This welcome news is something I'd encouraged (though I'm not naive enough to think my input had much to do with it). Glad to see it has now happened, and kudos to all who've helped make this happen, including Bill Higgins, who is now managing the Jazz.net community site.
Also of particular interest in the Computerworld article are the two concluding paragraphs:
IBM on Monday also announced that the second beta version of the first Jazz-based product -- called IBM Rational Team Concert Express -- is now available. The product, expected to be generally available later this year, is aimed at helping small and midsize development teams improve productivity through collaboration, IBM said. It includes Web dashboards to help users see real-time status data including the status of work items and project health.
Finally, IBM announced that IBM Research is working on a new projects called Bluegrass, which is aimed at using virtual worlds such as Second Life to help software developers work and brainstorm with one another using interactive visual representations of ideas, data from the Web and Jazz-based sources.
Check out the complete article for more details, including perspective from Scott Hebner, IBM Rational VP of marketing and strategy, about how IBM will "build our products in a completely transparent and collaborative fashion with our customers."
I read today about Matthew Szulik stepping down as CEO and president of Red Hat (though he will remain a key part of Red Hat, serving as Chairman of the Board). You can read his personal account of the news here.
I applaud Matthew's passion and success leading Red Hat and helping champion open source and Linux over the past decade. I also applaud his dedication to his family, which led to his transition. As reported by CNet, Matthew explains, "For the last nine months, I've struggled with health issues in my family. ... This job requires a 7x24, 110 percent commitment." Ultimately, Matthew prioritized his family -- a decision I appreciate all the more as my wife and I prepare for the birth of our first child. I wish him and his family the best.
Here's wishing everyone more time to share with their loved ones. Especially over the holidays, but also year-round. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year, everyone.[Read More]
As some of you may have already learned (as CNet, ZDNet, and others have reported, and as we've mentioned elsewhere), earlier this month, developerWorks made it much easier for you to search our rich collection of code with help from both Krugle and Koders. Special thanks to our own David Salinas, who worked through many issues (technical, legal, and otherwise) to help make this happen.
I expect many of you will find this enhancement of developerWorks most useful. The indexed code includes:
code from more than 1,400 articles (and we plan to expand code search to our full collection of articles)
more than 33,000 individual source code files
more than 4.6 million lines of code
One nifty element of the search function: Not only can you quickly search, find and view code on developerWorks to help your with your projects, you can also annotate source code with your own comments and create direct bookmarks to a single or group of individual files. And search results also incorporate the context of the article, as well as a link back to the article that explains and employs the code, vs. simply the code in isolation.
Bottom line: You'll now find developerWorks code via your searches whether you use Koders or Krugle. And if you want to search developerWorks code specifically, you can easily do so on the developerWorks site: Simply use the standard dW search and then, on the results page, click on "Sample Code results (hosted by Krugle)." Alternatively, you can bookmark this example results page (in which I searched for "open"and found 4440 matching files) and modify the search term there.
We formally launched on Sept. 28, 1999 (after a few months as a public beta site). Eight years later, the fundamental developerWorks mission remains the same: To serve the wants and needs of developers and technical professionals. Our unwavering focus on this goal has helped grow the IBM developer community, which now boasts more than 5.7 million members. It has led to numerous awards, including the elite Jolt Hall of Fame award we received earlier this year. And it has helped us continue to distinguish ourselves from other vendor-sponsored developer sites, with our focus extending beyond our own company's products and services to include content and resources dedicated to open standards and product- and platform-independent content. (For more historical context, see this JavaWorld article and the related IBM press release.)
Whatever your reason, whatever your path, we're glad you've found us. And to help us celebrate our birthday, we welcome your personal story: What brought you to developerWorks, and when? What do you value about developerWorks? Let us know -- simply post a brief comment to this blog entry.
P.S. Today I coincidentally learned that developerWorks' birthday falls on the same date as the birthday of Confucius. As one source notes:
In Taiwan, [Confucius] is honored on the anniversary of his birth - September 28th. His birthday is a legal holiday in Taiwan. It is referred to as Teacher's Day since Confucius is considered the greatest teacher in Chinese history.
Like Confucius, dW strives to teach (though I suppose Confucius did not focus particularly on IT professionals). I'm happy to see dW share a birthday with such a respected teacher. Who knows? Perhaps in a few thousand years, developerWorks' birthday will become an official holiday among IT companies, just as Confucius's birthday is a legal holiday in Taiwan. ;-)[Read More]