Enterprise Class Innovation: System z Perspectives
Looking through the current issue of Mainframe Executive, (you are subscribed, right?) and saw a nice interview with some of the Academic Initiative students. I also noted that there will be university program representatives at Share this year to talk with mainframe shop managers in August in Boston (see z Events ). The theme continues in IBM Systems Magazine for the Mainframe
with the article: Educated for Success.
These items made me nostalgic, thinking of Dr. Seuss and "all the wonderful things they'll see!" We old fog-gees saw virtual storage, MVT, SVS, MVS, and up to z/OS and they may see operating systems so many levels of complexity and abstraction above what we have watched it boggles the mind. We abstracted platforms with middleware running anywhere and then raising the bar by abstracting run-times with the evolutionary result of early CSP and VA/GEN to the current Enterprise Generation Language: EGL.
We watched virtualization from basic storage to VM, server consolidation, and federation, and they start by taking steps on the cloud!
On the note of systems evolving, it seems I am hearing about more enterprises looking hard at long term systems that were build over decades to perform incredibly efficiently but, alas, in many cases (since they are rigid and tightly coupled), when it is time to introduce the change monster, the prospect of 'different' overwhelms them. Projected costs, time, & risks start to look pretty scary. Hey, just remember that the remodeling industry is bigger than new housing construction, and build that value case regardless of how large the 'maintenance' is to your application or infrastructure base.
And don't forget, there are many more options with componentization, messaging, event-based architectures, SOA and web services; not to mentionand modernization transformation strategies and tooling that weren't there just a few years ago. Remember VSE to MVS migrations? How about Y2K? The longer you go without changing, the bigger the bump --whatever the system.
Just remember: start small (skunk works and prototypes) , draw some good pictures (architectural models), bring extra sandwinches (resources)....maintain your perspective (humor).
Or maybe, wait for some magic that we have yet to see!!
As fall starts showing some early signs here in the Midwest, I took a few days last week for cleanup chores. Today’s entry will be kind of like that, with a couple of quick notes or tidbits.
First, while I have mentioned the Academic Initiative IBM has in relation to System z, I don’t think I included any relevant pointers, so for this program that now has 500 schools participating worldwide:
Oh, and to engage with folks from IBM regarding System z skills, just send a note to: email@example.com.
Next, did anyone see the browser announcement of 'Chrome' by Google? I’ve played with it a little bit and two things pop out at me; besides the obvious business implications of stepping in this space of browser and client interfaces. First, it is kind of nice to have a quickstart icon for certain sites, but also, the idea of not having a browser task that is having problems bring down all of your sessions says some positive things about their possible awareness of an old System z design concept! Something stumbles but it doesn’t bring anyone else down with it… sound familiar?
Finally, I heard a couple of items related to System z in the last couple of weeks that you umight want to put in your virtual pocket. Did you know there are more CICS transactions every day than searches on the web? (I know, still true!) Another fun fact I heard in a customer teleconference referenced the mechanism of System z hardware executing instructions in parallel and then comparing them to make sure they come out the same. That is a great example of an availability mechanism that came from a time where they were flipping those little ferrite cores of memory and is so deep in the design we take if for granted if we stop to think about it at all. It’s a detail, but as great coaches say, details build champions. Think of John Wooden starting the first practice by teaching his players how to put on their socks and tie their shoes correctly to avoid blisters. .. and win basketball championships.[Read More]