Great articles by amazing contributors. Make sure you read every article in the latest edition of the DM Magazine. I’ve read the article about Roger Sander’s contribution to the DB2 Certification Exam Development team and the announcement of his latest certification guide, which is a supplement. I’ve bookmarked many of the other articles so I can read them over the coming week. I hope you find something interesting and useful in this edition!
Taming Big Data - The realm of huge information flows is governed by new rules. What changes in the multi-petabyte, microsecond response, multimedia world? And how will Big Data change your job?
by Lisa Stapleton
It’s not just huge volumes. It’s not just microsecond response times, it’s not just incredible variety. It’s all three. Dealing with “nice” data, stored in well-defined data warehouse structures and handled sometimes months or years after it is first collected, is an increasingly smaller part of the job of data management. Here’s how folks are learning to handle the rest of it—the unstructured data, and the data that constantly changes as customers take actions and applications process input.
Tuning SQL at the Senate: E Pluribus Unum - When the SQL flow in the United States Senate went from static to dynamic, the database team had to see many queries, but tune them as one.
by Ives Brant
“High-performance government” may sound like an oxymoron, but for the teams that monitor and tune databases for the U.S. Senate, high performance is absolutely necessary to handle the huge number of queries that hit the Senate’s financial management system. InfoSphere Optim Query Workload Tuner software running on IBM DB2 z/OS helps the U.S. Senate DBAs and software specialists reduce query response time from 20 to 30 seconds to less than 2 seconds when they generate new statistics for a workload of SQL queries.
The Man to See About Certification - The guru of DB2 certification tests talks about how he puts them together—and how they can help your career
by Howard Baldwin
Q&A with Roger Sanders who has helped IBM develop 17 DB2 certification exams, more than any other individual. Want to know why certification is important? Roger Sanders is the man to ask. We talked to him about how the tests are put together, how they can help a DBA’s career, and—oh yes—about the certification test he failed.
Get Your Head in the Clouds - Data Pros are adopting cloud computing concepts to offer databases as a service - easing management burdens and sending users to cloud nine.
by Jin Zhang
Tactics and strategies for moving away from traditional provisioning models in which DBAs function solely in reactive mode—responding to user requests in nonstop “database, clone, database, clone” activities—towards a database-as-a-service, or DBaaS (pronounced as “D-Baa-S”), model employing cloud computing practices.
To offer DBaaS on the cloud, enterprise IT departments must undergo a process of constructing and managing a private enterprise “data cloud”—a platform consisting of storage hardware, virtual images, database schemas and more—and making that cloud available to users through a services interface.
Smarter is… Making Watson Smarter…Faster
by Howard Baldwin
A deeper look at the Jeopardy-winning system and the technology that enables it to process information in near real-time.
IBM Information Governance Council - Information Governance Community growing worldwide - IGC draws 1500 members, solicits best practices ideas
by the Magazine Team
The wisdom of crowds isn't an oxymoron. Large groups have an uncanny ability to get the right answer - just see James Surowiecki's book on the subject for proof. So it's not unreasonable to say that the Information Governance Council (IGC) is getting smarter with each passing month.
Data Architect - Securing DB2 Data - Grant privileges to a what, not a who
by Robert Catterall
These days executives are more concerned than ever about unauthorized access to data entrusted to their organization. Their fears are justified: a recent study showed that a third of those polled would quit doing business with a company they perceived to be guilty of a data security breach.
Distributed DBA - Using the DB2 Problem Determination Tool
by Roger E. Sanders
Sooner or later, every DBA encounters problems. Consequently, a skill that every DBA must possess is the ability to perform a logical, systematic search of a database system for the source of any problems that might arise. The DB2 Problem Determination Tool can help.
Programmers Only - New Order by Information: Part 2. The Impact of using the RANDOM index option on ORDER BY sort avoidance
by Bonnie Baker
In the last issue, Bonnie Baker began a series of columns concerning new aspects of ORDER BY. This column - Part 2 - covers the impact of using the CREATE / ALTER INDEX RANDOM order option on sort avoidance.
Performance tuning on Informix - Fastest Informix DBA Contest III - Performance tuning an OLTP system
by Lester Knutsen
Performance tuning is a continuous process for every DBA. Advanced DataTools Corporation conducted three fastest Informix DBA contests to highlight and learn what goes on in this process.
Imagine What You Could Do - Free your mind, and your business will follow
by David Buelke
Big Data, Big Time - Series data, warehouse acceleration, and 4GLs
by Stuart Litel
Last week I blogged about some of the excellent training resources that you can get for free. Today I’ll tell you about some of the deals you can get to bring down the price of a resource to something closer to free:
- DB2University.com – Some of the courses are free, but not all. The idea behind DB2University is to offer you very low cost training opportunities.
- Membership to IDUG is free. If you are a member, you can get 45% off the retail price of any of the IBM Press books. Go to IDUG’s home page and click on the icon on the bottom right corner. This will give you the instructions needed to get your discount. See a previous blog entry for more information on IDUG: IDUG = International DB2 User Group
- If you’re not a member of IDUG and don’t wish to join, you can take advantage of the following offer: New and Best-Selling Information Management Books at 35% off; Enter coupon code INFOMGMT during checkout to receive discount.
- Looking for an ebook? Get 40% off IBM Press titles. See “eBooks from IBM Press “ for details.
- Buy your DB2 Certification Guides directly from MC Press’ Online bookstore to save as much as 54% on a book.
- Best book about how you can improve and thrive in your career: Making it Big in Software. Still 35% off at amazon.com.
- Save $100 and refresh your skills with Assess and Save – Take a sample test and get $100 off the normal price of an exam.
I’ll keep looking for offers to share with you that are free or nearly free… so keep coming back for more information.
Monday April 25 is the Kickoff
for DB2 for z/OS
shows on the DB2Night Show. As a reader of my blog, by now you know the DB2Night Show and Scott Hayes
very well. Just to be sure, here’s what you need to know about the DB2Night Show:
Scott Hayes of DBI started a series of free webinars in September 2009 with the goals to: Educate, Entertain, and Inform. There have been 48 shows already and 98% of the attendees said that they learned something new from the show. I’ve personally been involved in the past few months as part of the “DB2’s Got Talent” competition and I must say that I was blown away with the quality, variety, and depth of the education provided.
Each episode has a DB2 educational theme and speakers have been IBM experts, top consultants, IBM DB2 Gold Consultants, IBM Information Management Champions, and experienced users.
Klaas Brant of KBCE and organizer of DB2 Symposium Education has decided to turn Mondays into a must attend learning session for people who work with DB2 for z/OS. There are already 5 amazing shows on the schedule with more to come.
Remember, the DB2Night Show is completely free for participants, but there is a limit to how many attendees can attend. Make sure you register immediately so you don’t miss out. Replays will be available following each show.
Here is the current schedule:
The History of DB2
Monday April 25, 2011, 11EDT
The kickoff of the DB2Night Show z/OS Edition features legendary Roger Miller. This event shows much of the history of DB2 with milestones of new versions, new inventions, and showcases some of the people who contributed key inventions and innovations in DB2.
The Future of DB2
Monday May 9, 2011, 11 EDT
Edition #1 was a look at the history of DB2, so it is fitting to have the second show centered around the future of DB2 z/OS. Special guest Jeff Josten will share the latest new with DB2 V10 and will offer his insights into what may be coming in future releases.
DB2 10 Performance
Monday May 16, 2011, 11 EDT
This episode will look at performance in DB2 10. Special guest Cristian Molaro was recently a co-author on a new IBM Redbook about DB2 performance that will publish soon. Cristian will share his hands-on experience with DB2 10 performance during the show.
DB2 10 SQL Enhancements
Monday, May 23, 2011, 11EDT
DB2 10 is packed with new SQL features like temporal data and many others. Join special guest Terry Purcell as he walks us through these great new features and explains how to get the best from them.
DB2 10 Customer Experiences
Monday, June 6, 2011, 11EDT
Many customers are already using DB2 10 in production. Special guest John Campbell will talk about migration planning and share lessons learned from people who have already migrated.
Are you looking for more quality educational ideas? See my previous blog entries:
- FREE – Flashbook “DB2 10 for z/OS - Cost Savings ..... Out of the Box“ available; find out how to get yours: http://bit.ly/fjR4x2
- FREE - Ten new IBM Redbooks that you may be interested in: http://ibm.co/hZDwXV
- FREE - Learn from experts via Best Practice articles for DB2 for z/OS: http://ibm.co/eTXbRd
- FREE – 3 certification exams for attendees of IDUG Tech Conference: http://ibm.co/giLoQA
- IDUG Tech Conference: http://ibm.co/gqaA35
- DB2 for z/OS Events & Resources: http://bit.ly/hZDPbf
Learning is a life-long journey, so take advantage of the outstanding resources that are available for you.
Can you tell that I love IDUG yet? OK, one more post and then maybe you’ll be convinced.
Cristian Molaro, an IBM Best Friend from Belgium (my mom’s home country :) sent me a link to a blog that he did similar to the one I posted from Beth yesterday. Like Beth, he’s listing the sessions that he’d like to go to given his affinity to DB2 for z/OS. Cristian’s blog entry: “A Travel Guide to IDUG DB2 Tech Conference – Anaheim 2011”.
Instead of repeating any of his post, or the other posts, let me tell you a few things that I’ve learned about the IDUG conference thanks to my guest bloggers:
A link to the Conference Event Grid.
A link to the Online Conference Schedule.
Budgeting tip: Did you know that if you attended an IDUG Regional Event in 2010, you can use the monies paid as a credit towards the IDUG 2011 NA conference?
Bryan Paulsen and Paul Turpin:
The DineAround event is very popular and spots fill up very fast! See post (All about IDUG DB2 Tech Conference - Anaheim )for a list of restaurants, leaders, and how you can sign up.
The name of the conference has changed to the IDUG DB2 Tech Conference to help people get funding to attend the conference.
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.
She loves IDUG as much as I do and considers it her Geeky Vacation.
The keywords for me for this IDUG are: pureScale, Performance Tuning, XML, Cloud, and, of course, Security.
This time, she’s looking for sessions that will help round out her resume.
When I do the math, the cost of NOT going to IDUG North America is much greater than the conference cost!
I hope you’ve found this set of posts helpful to you. If you are going to IDUG, I hope you have a wonderful and educational week.
I found a guest blogger for today who can navigate through all the amazing IDUG sessions and recommend the best for a person who is from the z/OS side of the house. Thanks to Rebecca Bond for being my guest blogger for the LUW sessions: IDUG NA – The Geeky Vacation!
Before I pass the baton to my guest blogger Beth Zlotky, I’d like to thank Suresh Sane for connecting me to Beth. Now, here’s Beth:
Greetings IDUG bloggers. As an IDUG NA attendee for the past two years, I'm very much looking forward to a repeat great experience in Anaheim. The friendly atmosphere in the hallways, at the sessions, and, let's face it, while dining too, has made the week very comfortable and enjoyable for me in the past. For those of you perhaps new to the conference, you may be surprised at how quickly you start recognizing familiar faces. The value of the information presented in the sessions and while networking with peers makes this a fantastic learning experience.
My particular role at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas is that of a DB2 for z/OS systems programmer; thus, my session choices tend to lean towards overall subsystem performance, migration experiences, etc. That said, I'm always eager to also get familiar with those new features available to the DBAs and developers in new releases. (Of note, for you developers – I've had the privilege of hearing both of Suresh Sane's sessions in our area User Group meetings: B15 – DB2 Design Selected (Controversial?) Topics and E10 – DB2 10 Application Topics – A Sneak Preview. Go. It'll be well worth your time).
I'm fortunate this year to be able to attend one of the Monday sessions: Z03 – Optimizing DB2 for z/OS System Performance Using DB2 Statistics Trace, with John Campbell. By the way, did you know that if you attended an IDUG Regional Event in 2010, you can use the monies paid as a credit towards the IDUG 2011 NA conference? In our case, the credit nearly covered the cost of the Monday session.
In these days of ever-tightening budgets, I feel very thankful for the opportunity to use precious training dollars. I want to say thank you to my employer by thinking, "what sessions will best help me to help our company?" Of course, my track leans heavily towards z/OS, and our shop in particular has embraced (and is continuing to develop in this direction) distributed Java apps running under WebSphere on UNIX, using DB2 on Z as the data server. I'm constantly trying to better understand how those apps access DB2 on Z and how we can improve performance from a subsystem perspective. There are some great sessions along those lines this year. I've yet to completely flesh out my week's agenda, but have identified these for sure:
- Z03: Optimizing DB2 for z/OS System Performance Using DB2 Statistics Trace. John Campbell
- B02: Mastering Distributed Access to DB2 for z/OS. Cristian Molaro.
- A03: Continuous Monitoring of Dynamic Queries. Thomas Baumann.
- A04: IBM Reorg Utility and RTS – A Smooth Transition. Paul Walters.
- B05: The DB2 V10 Catalog – A Revolution. Steen Rasmussen.
- B06: DB2 for z/OS Migration Planning Survival Guide. Linda Claussen.
- F07: DB2 10 for z/OS – John Deere's Beta Experience. Bryan Paulsen.
- G08: Early Experiences with DB2 10 Metrics/Metadata. Terry Berman.
- B10: DB2 10 for z/OS Planning and Very Early Experiences. John Campbell.
- A11: A DB2 Hitchhikers Guide to RMF and SMF. Frank Petersen.
- B12: Omegamon PDB – Exploit the Power of the PDB to Solve Performance Issues. Billy Sundarrajan.
- A14: Cost Control Methods for DB2 for z/OS Workloads. Mary Beth Jeffords.
- G15: Monitoring and Troubleshooting Distributed Access to DB2 for z/OS. Cristian Molaro.
If you see a "Beth Zlotky" name tag, please say hello. It's always nice to compare notes and share experiences. See you in Anaheim.
Thanks so much Beth! I’m sure this will help people choose the best sessions out of the wonderful selection that is available. For details on the sessions, see my blog entry All about IDUG DB2 Tech Conference – Anaheim.
I can’t believe that it’s been so long since I blogged about the Best Practice papers! Kate Kurtz sent me four new ones today and I found that my last entry about this topic was posted April 2009: “Learn & Benefit from Others “. Here are the four newest ones:
Written by Matthias Nicola and Susanne Englert
Update Published January 2011
This paper provides principles and guidelines for using DB2® pureXML® to solve business problems effectively and to achieve high performance when managing XML data in enterprise applications. The examples illustrating the best practices are based on a real-world financial application scenario and demonstrate how to implement the guidelines. The examples can be easily adapted to other types of XML applications. The paper covers the following areas:
- Storage options for XML data to improve performance and storage efficiency
- Techniques for adding XML data into a DB2 database
- Techniques for querying and updating XML documents efficiently
- Techniques for using indexes over XML data with queries effectively
- Techniques for efficiently maintaining and monitoring an XML database
- Techniques for developing efficient pureXML applications
Written by Maksym Petrenko, Mike Winer, and Joyce Coleman.
Published February 2011
Summary: Data in a data warehouse can be classified according to its temperature. The temperature of data is based on how often it is accessed, how volatile it is, and how important the performance of the queries that access the data is. Hot data is frequently accessed and updated, and users expect optimal performance when accessing this data. Cold data is rarely accessed and updated, and the performance of the queries that access this data is not essential. Using faster, more expensive storage devices for hot data and slower, less expensive storage devices for cold data optimizes the performance of the queries that matter most while helping to reduce overall cost.
Learn about a strategy for managing a multi-temperature data warehouse by storing data on different types of storage devices based on the temperature of the data.
This article provides guidelines and recommendations for each of the following tasks:
- Identifying and characterizing data into temperature tiers
- Designing the data base in an IBM® Smart Analytics System environment to accommodate multiple data temperatures
- Moving data from one temperature tier to another
- Using DB2® workload manager (WLM) to allocate more resources to requests for hot data than to requests for cold data
- Planning a backup and recovery strategy when a data warehouse includes multiple data temperature tiers
The content of this article applies to data warehouses based on version 9.7 or later of DB2 for Linux®, UNIX®, and Windows®. All examples in the article refer to IBM Smart Analytics System and InfoSphere™ Balanced Warehouse® environments.
Written by Walid Rjaibi and Mark Wilding
Published February 2011
Summary: Public cloud computing is an emerging computing technology that uses the Internet and central remote servers to host data and applications. It allows consumers and businesses to use applications without installing them locally and access information from any computer with Internet access. Cloud computing allows for much more efficient computing by using centralized storage, memory, and processing. The benefits of cloud computing are clear, and so is the need to develop appropriate security for cloud implementations.
This article is important for all DBAs who are setting up or managing databases in a public cloud environment. The details and best practices in this article will help DBAs protect themselves and their companies from security leaks and exposures by applying a standard, high-grade security policy to all databases that are hosted in a public cloud.
The information in this article is organized into three main sections:
- The IBM data server security blueprint: The blueprint first positions data server security within the bigger enterprise security picture. This section also describes steps to develop and roll out a security plan.
- Threats and countermeasures: This section describes the most common threats that affect a data server, whether it is deployed in a traditional environment or a cloud computing environment. The section then recommends a set of countermeasures.
- Additional cloud-specific security challenges: This section examines the additional challenges posed to data security in a cloud environment, in particular the need for privileged user monitoring and data segregation.
Written by: Silvio Luiz Correia Ferrari, Marco Antonio Norbiato, and Joyce Coleman.
Published March 2011
Summary: The IBM Smart Analytics System family of offerings evolved from the InfoSphere Balanced Warehouse family of offerings. Both are based on the same storage and database design principles.
Learn about some of the frequently asked questions about system maintenance in IBM® Smart Analytics System environments and InfoSphere™ Balanced Warehouse environments.
The frequently asked questions are grouped into the following two categories:
- System administration
- Ongoing maintenance and upgrades
The questions and answers discussed here apply to several generations of IBM Smart Analytics System configuration. The article uses the term IBM Smart Analytics System except when referring to specific InfoSphere Balanced Warehouse configurations. Most content, however, applies to IBM Smart Analytics System configurations and InfoSphere Balanced Warehouse configurations. Unless otherwise indicated, all content applies to V9.5 and V9.7 levels of the InfoSphere Warehouse and DB2® software.
You can find all the best practice articles on the following website:
I hope you find this series of articles useful. I’ll keep the website bookmarked for updates and will blog as new articles are published.
Thanks to Norberto
for accepting my invitation to be a guest blogger on my site today. Norberto was one of our finalists in the DB2Night Show's "DB2's Got Talent" Competition". As in his presentations, you'll find this post very full of incredibly useful information. Norberto was concerned that his post was too long, but I assurred him that it perfect as is. I hope you'll agree.
It’s a pleasure to be here in Susan Visser’s blog today. I’ll talk about the contest, with special focus on my last presentation.
On the final round, at the beginning of our presentations, we contestants showed more info about our lives. It was nice to show the world more about our personal info. That made people feel closer to us I think.
I started talking about all my past presentations. I turned off my mobile, all messaging/mailing applications from my laptop, and even put Calopi (our cockatiel) in a room far from my office, BUT during that slide, my home phone started to ring! That messed up with that slide a bit, as I lost concentration.
After showing my past tips/lessons learned, I introduced some tips I use daily - which are not specifically related to DB2, but will surely be useful to any DBAs and other people. Here they are:
- Log everything you do on PuTTY. There are times you have to know something you did in the past. With the help of PuTTY logs, you can retrieve that.
- PuTTY Connection Manager - can be very useful when you have to have several sessions open at the same time.
- You can use PuTTY from your mobile - That can really help with situations when you don't have a computer near. (But you will have to have access to your server's network from your mobile.)
- This is an old set of executables that enables anyone to issue very nice Unix commands like grep, tail and so on.
- Very useful to write SQL queries, procedures and functions. It's built-in functions enable users to do complex text changes with just a few clicks.
The Win+M key
- You can clean your Windows screen by just pressing those 2 keys. Very useful (if you use dozens of apps at same time like me) .
After that, I focused on DB2, introducing some technical tips:
- For any problem you have, the best start is always the DB2 InfoCenter (in the same version you have your DB2).
- Next, a tip about changing several passwords on several servers quickly. I know user/password management can be a cumbersome task which can take a lot of time. Usually, the DBA team owns all DB2 users (instance owner, fenced, DAS), so they are responsible to keep them secure. With the approach I showed, and with some automation using the ATTACH command, the task can be extremely simplified. I'm planning to create a stored procedure to do that automatically, based on a table having server names, instance names and ports, user IDs and old/new passwords. When I have it created I'll post in my blog.
- Put DB2 environment variables in the right place - Most of the DB2 DBAs I know are not aware that using ~/sqllib/userprofile is the most correct place to put any environment variable and customization which would normally be on the instance owner's .profile. By using that, other users who call ". $INSTHOME/sqllib/db2profile, will have the same configs as if they were the instance owner.
- Using scripts to save your time - I commented about some scripts that I wrote in the past. They are really useful for me, and I wanted to share them in my blog. Some are already there, others are not (but I'll add all them there soon).
- Next I focused on how to execute SQL generated by SQL through a unique command line. Through help of sed, this very useful tip works smoothly on Linux and Unix. I’ll post that in my blog soon.
After those technical tips, I also gave some educational/networking advice.
Don't overlook the cloud - you can take advantage of it right now! BTW, I met Raul Chong here in Curitiba this week, and he showed us DB2 on cloud in a very nice presentation.
Another nice tip is about reading everything you can about new implementations and behavior changes on new versions of DB2 (through the InfoCenter). I mentioned that, for example, from DB2 v9.5 on, you don't need to issue db2iupdt, migrate database or even bind packages for all databases when applying fixpacks. If you know that, you can save time!
After that, I advised people to stay tuned by:
Regarding DBA skills, certifications are always welcome (you can see I showed the ones I achieved at the beginning of my presentation). Buying a good book for that is one of the best paths for ensuring your success on the exam. I also put a link to DB2University, a very complete website where you can find some free and other inexpensive courses, as the name suggests, all about DB2.
Putting all that together and presenting in just 6 minutes was not easy, so I had to hurry a bit.
That’s all about my presentation on the DB2’s Got Talent Finale.
I’m sure all contestants did their best showing their tips and lessons learned. We all have many roles, and finding time to present such info is a really hard task. I confess I went to sleep very late some nights to have my presentations ready!
I’m now in touch with some of the other contestants, and really like the idea of having such highly skilled DBAs in my network. Audience/replay watchers also added me on LinkedIn and started following my twitter and my blog. Thank you all! I’ll do my best to fill my blog with useful information!
I’d like to thank Scott Hayes for the opportunity he gave us, and also the judges – Susan, Martin, Klaas, and Cristian – your comments always brought value to the presentations.
I’ll finish saying it was a great pleasure to participate on this contest, and I encourage other DBAs to do the same in the future. I’m sure Scott will want to repeat this success :)
Thanks Norberto! I enjoyed your post very much.
Voter comments about Norberto:
- Very impressive presentations! I liked all of them, but Norberto's tips where simple and extremely usefull!
- Norberto's presentation, though had no out of box tool/new db2 functionality but he shared the tools n tips that surely gonna help any naive or even a seasoned dba
- Norberto is the best DB2 DBA ever!
- Vai Norberto Vai !!
- Norberto's presentation was fantastic!
- It has been quite interesting walking through the presentation and appreciate the way information has been compiled together and presented. I wish all 4 contestants the very best and especial mention for Noberto for making life really easier one :)
- Way to go , Norberto :D. You have been great. Fingers crossed. Good luck for the final round !
- Great presentation from Norberto, he deserves be the winner
You can see all voter comments on Scott’s Blog.
Besides the massive world events that are taking place and creating history,
there are many other events taking place in the month of March in the
Information Management area that you may wish to know about.
First of all, you likely know that today is Pi Day. OK, now
you know I’m a geek :)
Second, IBM’s Centennial. SVP Robert LeBlanc came and spoke to the employees of the Toronto
Lab this morning. He’s on an executive campus tour to tell people about the
innovation that IBM has been part of in the past 100 years and encouraged us
with his prediction that the next 100 years will also entail incredible
innovation. If you haven’t seen the centennial videos yet, I suggest you do. They are well done
and very motivating.
Next, there are two chats with the lab this month. One for Informix and
another for DB2:
Chat with the Lab: March 31: DB2
and Oracle - An Architectural Comparison
Chat with the Lab, March 17:
"Upgrading to Informix 11.7"
For DB2 for z/OS, there is also a webinar that sounds interesting:
Improve your ROI with DB2 for
z/OS and WebSphere, March 29
There are two final episodes
remaining in the “DB2’s Got Talent” Competition. Last Friday we had the
second of the 4 finalist episodes and there are still 7 contestants. During the
finalist episodes, it is you, the audience, who will “vote” for the winners.
Make sure you watch the replays and cast your vote. The talent and tips we’ve
seen over the past 6 weeks have been incredible.
On a personal note, it is March Break this week, so kids are out of school,
Saint Patty’s Day is this week and I’ll be visiting NYC to celebrate, and I have
a birthday coming. Is it this busy every March??
Have fun :)
I missed last week’s show due to vacation and thank Cristian Molaro for filling in for me. I haven't had a chance to watch the replay yet. If you’re in the same situation, you can find all the replays on the DB2Night Show Blog.
Today we heard from 8 contestants on a variety of topics. If you are thinking of creating a presentation, I highly recommend that you watch what these people do as they are becoming quite expert at showcasing technical information.
Here is a brief description of today’s show:
Mary – db2move
Loved her photos of elephants. Very well organized presentation.
Momi – The Report Utility for DB2 for z/OS
The usability for this function has improved in V10, but the function is still necessary.
Norberto – DB2TOP Tips
Tips for using DB2TOP to find out what’s going on in your database. I was really impressed with how Norberto explained a very complex screen capture. As he was going through each concept, he would highlight the corresponding text on the screen. I highly recommend using this technique during presentations as well as written documents. This is exactly how a complex diagram should be explained.
JB – DB2dart Techniques
JB has a knack for telling a good story. She lead listeners through her presentation via a story of how she was able to reclaim much space & improve performance. If you are looking to improve your presentations or writing in this area, pay close attention to how JB does it. I told her that she’d make an excellent author given this skill.
Raja – DB2Advise Utility
We couldn’t find Raja, so unfortunately had to miss his presentation.
Ahmad – db2look
Ahmad presented his experience in using the db2look command and as a result gave very creative uses for the command. The only thing that could have improved his presentation is with a comparison of using db2look vs the traditional method.
Thiru – db2caem tool for performance analysis
This is a very new command, from V9.7. caem stands for “Capture Activity Event Monitor” and this tool is used to capture activities with details of SQL Statements. I like the way Thiru compared traditional monitoring to using db2caem to monitor.
John – Db2look for z/OS with Federated Tables
Although Ahmad’s presentation was on the same topic, John’s was regarding the DB2 for z/OS version of the tool. I like the way John referred to Ahmad’s presentation where he could. John asked if “IBM was listening” as he had an option he’d like to see added to the command. I was listening, but I’m sure there were others who are more influential than me!
Bob – db2dart techniques
This presentation covered the same topic as JB covered , but from the perspective John’s experience. He wanted to reduce wasted disk space and the size of his backup. He gave the steps he used and marked up his presentation as he spoke to lead people through the data.
Only 8 finalists go to March 18 Finals, so we had to choose between Bob and John as they received the lowest number of votes. I can’t understand why either of these guys were at the bottom as both had very strong presentations this week. The audience asked that we save John, and the judges wanted to as well, but there was a leaning towards Bob…. so Bob it is.
Thanks very much to all contestants. I find this forum to be amazing for the learning and fun experience. I’ve seen some of the comments that were given by voters and see that they agree. I’ll go through the data and blog again. Can’t wait till next week’s show!
Earlier this week I was honoured to be a guest lecturer at York University. A few years ago, I made contact with Professor Franck van Breugel who teaches a master’s level course in computer science. Franck was interested in improving the quality of his student’s writing skills. Franck, like me, understands that being able to write or communicate well are important skills to take into any career.
So for the third year in a row, I met with Franck’s class and presented a slideshow created by Roger Sanders that corresponds with his upcoming book “From Idea to Print”. Roger used the slides as the basis for a full day writing workshop on how to create and publish technical documents. I’ve modified the slides so that I can teach them in a little more than an hour and touch on the basics of how to improve writing skills.
What are the basics?
1. Schedule time to write. If you wait until you’re “in the mood to write”, you’ll never get anything done! Set goals for how much you want to accomplish and move to another section if one is causing you grief. Reward yourself as targets are reached.
2. Have a strong outline before you start to write. I know it sounds cliché, but the more up front planning you do, the easier the writing will be. Even for technical documents, you should “tell a story”. Have a beginning, say a problem that needs to be solved; a middle, the search for a solution; and an end, a strong conclusion.
3. Let some personality show through in the writing. There are some cases where dry, factual writing is required, but where it’s not, let the writing be conversational or slightly casual to be of interest to the reader. Always think of your reader. Even if the writing is just for a school paper, the last thing you want to do is to bore the reader so that the ending is never reached.
4. Diagrams and tables are useful, but ONLY if they are tied tightly with the text. Don’t put them there just for filler because they’ll never be looked at. The best idea is to add reference numbers to the diagrams and have text to lead the reader from one point to the next. If that sounds like too much work, maybe the diagram isn’t really needed.
5. No one’s writing is perfect… every author needs to review and revise their work many times. Most authors get quite tired of reading what they’ve written by the time it is “finished”.
To make revision as easy as possible, I suggest that each time you go through your draft, look for one specific thing at a time. For instance, the first time through, check that you are using the active voice instead of passive. Next, go through and look to make sure headings and lists use parallel wording. Next, look for words that are commonly spelled incorrectly that will not be caught by a spell checker. And so on.
6. For everyone, but especially if you are English-second language, consider reading the text out loud or have the computer read it to you. You may be able to hear problems in the wording easier than you can read them. Also, look at past comments you’ve received on writing assignments. Likely you often make the same errors every time you write, so pay close attention to how your previous errors were corrected, and go through your document to specifically focus on improving these problem areas.
7. For the past month I’ve been acting as a judge on the “DB'2’s Got Talent” competition on the “DB2Night Show”. Much of the advice here about writing also came out on that show in terms of improving the quality of a technical presentation. Even if you don’t fully understand the topic being discussed (as was true for me many times) you’ll be able to see what makes a presentation “good”.
8. There are a lot more details that will help you, so I encourage you to get a copy of Roger’s book when it is published. One last piece of advice. If you’re writing a technical document, your goal is not to make it “beautiful”… your goal is clarity. You want to ensure that anyone who reads what you’ve written understands your technical messages.
After the lecture, I found out that Sam Lightstone had recently visited the campus to give career advice similar to what he wrote in his book “Making it Big in Software”. Apparently he had a massive audience and Prof Franck told me that the students were buzzing with excitement after the talk. Sam is recording a podcast to be featured on Safari Books Online. Once I have the details, I’ll post here.
What an exciting week! With Watson winning on Jeopardy, meeting a member of the Watson team, and then today, the 3rd episode of the DB2Night Show’s competition DB2 has talent.
Today’s episode was particularly high quality. I think many of today’s contestants have enough knowledge to write books with very valuable content! Let me tell you about the contestants we met today:
John - “How to Move Data from Mainframe to LUW”
John has 39 years experience using various databases from IBM – IMS, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 for LUW, and maybe even SQL/DS… and his expertise showed. He provided scripts that could actually be used by people who are trying to accomplish what he did. His presentation was easy to follow, gave actual examples as to how he was able to move the data, and he finished in time.
Bob (Robert) – SQL Tuning Tricks – Perils of Using “not in”
OK, we didn’t actually hear from Bob, but we did see the first page of his slides. There were many technical issues with the meeting software today (I know first hand!) so hopefully Bob is able to come back next week. His topic sounds interesting and his first slide was promising. Let’s hear from you Bob!!
Naveen – Improving Database Performance by Choosing the Right Index
Naveen gave a very thorough and relevant presentation on indexing. His figures and cautions made the content very easy to follow. The only criticism is that Naveen failed to tell us that DB2 9.7 takes away the need for much of what he presented.
Ramesh – Determining which Indexes can be dropped
Ramesh was slightly less easy to understand than Naveen, but he did include information about how DB2 9.7 changes the indexing story. It’s too bad that we had back to back presenters discussing nearly the same topic, but that just tells us how important this task is.
Sameer – Optimizing Application Performance with DB2
This was Sameer’s second appearance on the DB2 has Talent competition. He was asked to cut his material down significantly and to re-present. Sameer took the challenge and excelled! His content could fill a book with truly amazing tips along with understandable explanations.
Jefferson – SAP and BufferPools
I’m sorry Jefferson, but I missed part of the title of your presentation. Jefferson gave a very detailed presentation about an important topic. He was able to gather examples that involved a very large amount of data and to demonstrate how to use bufferpools with SAP.
Thiru – Explain from Actuals
I think we all went away from this presentation realizing that Thiru had very nicely demonstrated a very little used stored procedure. It made me realize that there are problem many un-mined functions and features that DB2 offers that are not well known or well used. What an opportunity for future contestants!
Yogesh – Troubleshooting DB2 Work Load Manager
I think the only issue with Yogesh’s presentation was the sheer magnitude of the size of this topic. Yogesh wasn’t quite able to finish his presentation, but did a good job of showing the benefits of using WLM. My suggestion to Yogesh is that his presentation would have been more impactful if they had told a story from beginning to end. The way it was, there was too much time spent on the definition. Brave attempt!
Really this was a very high quality set of presentations and 96% of the attendees said that they learned something new. The tips that we were given were very much worth the price of admission! If you missed this show or the previous two, you can get the replays on the DB2Night Show page.
After much deliberation, we judges, Martin Hubel, Klaas Brant, and myself were able to inform host Scott Hayes that the following contestants should move on to the next round:
John, Sameer, and Thiru
Way to go! We are very much looking forward to seeing you present at the next round.
See also my previous blogs about the DB2 has Talent Competition:
First Episode of “DB2 has Talent”
Second Episode of DB2 has Talent
Today on the DB2Night Show, host Scott Hayes introduced us to the first 5 contestants on the “DB2 has Talent” competition. Scott tapped fellow IBM Gold Consultants Martin Hubel and Klaas Brant to be judges, as well as me. I must say it was put together very professionally and I think all participants and listeners had fun.
Here’s the lowdown on what we experienced.
First contestant Ramesh presented about db2top. Ramesh was clearly very skilled and passionate on this topic and it showed. Unfortunately for Ramesh, he went first, on the first show, so he was at a big disadvantage. Ramesh included too many slides to cover in the measly 4 minutes that he had available. As a result, we were not able to see his conclusion. There is much interest in the topic, so maybe we’ll have to have Ramesh back with a smaller set of slides.
Contestant two was JB. JB is clearly an experienced presenter since she didn’t sound nervous and she did a fabulous job. Here presentation was about using HADR to migrate low level hardware, OS, and software to more current levels. JB’s experience is something many people can learn from and she did a very nice job of explaining the problem, how she convince the team leads to try her solution and the amazing conclusion.
Mary was the third contestant and she presented on Identity vs Sequence. Mary as well was very comfortable with presenting and with her material. It was laid out very nicely giving the pros and cons of using each. I found her presentation to be very educational.
Norberto was the next contestant and he was from hot Brazil. He chose to present on the DB2Night Show instead of going to the beach, and we thank him for that! Norberto said that he learned English by becoming a DB2 DBA. We all know and love the database, but now we can give it credit for encouraging people to learn and become proficient in English. I really liked the humour that Norberto used in his slides, but Klaas cautioned him on using humour when the audience got really big and diverse. You don’t want to offend people! Norberto gave tips on improving SQL statements. His presentation led us through his journey of having very poorly written code to him debugging it and finally finding a way to improve the code so now it runs in 5 minutes versus the previous 10 HOURS! Way to go!!
The final contestant for today was Rob. Rob clearly reads self-help books, like I do, and chose to do a parody on a famous book by entitling his presentation “The 7 Habits of a Highly Effective DBA”. I thought the presentation showed much promise one of the first pieces of advice was to “not sweat the small stuff”. But Rob got too detailed in explaining the power of the db2diag.log and ran out of time. Rob could have used an entire hour to present his material and it would have been very well done. I hope that Rob is able to boil his material down to 4 minutes and that Scott allows him to redo his presentation… it has real promise. I suggested he write a book… but he could certainly turn this into a presentation that IDUG would be happy to have on it’s conference agenda.
All in all I was very happy meeting the contestants today and working with Scott, Martin and Klaas. In the end we invited 3 of the presenters back for a second presentation of the same material. This will allow them to fine tune their work and show us again. The three who are moving on are Mary, JB, and Norberto. Not to be sexist… but doesn’t that mean that the ladies rule????
If you weren’t able to take part in today’s show because of a conflict, I encourage you to get the replay. There are 3 more episodes like today’s and then the finale for 4 weeks in March. Hope you can join us! Oh, I think Scott is still looking for a few more contestants as well. Join in the fun.
Oh, if you do want to be a contestant, make sure you have headphones with a mic for your computer. Unfortunately there were two other people who we tried to hear from, but they weren’t set up correctly. I hope they are able to try again for one of the other weeks.
A reminder about the other shows in this series:
DB2 Night Show in February & March: DB2'S GOT TALENT CONTEST.
Join us on the following dates:
Feb 11, 2011 11:00 AM - 12:30 AM EST
Feb 18, 2011 11:00 AM - 12:30 AM EST
Feb 25, 2011 11:00 AM - 12:30 AM EST
Mar 4, 2011 11:00 AM - 12:30 AM EST
Mar 11, 2011 11:00 AM - 12:30 AM EST
Mar 18, 2011 11:00 AM - 12:30 AM EDT
Mar 25, 2011 11:00 AM - 12:30 AM EDT
We’re looking for contestants…. are you up for it? Check the site for eligibility. Maybe this will convince you to become a contestant: the prizes!
- 1st Prize: One FREE IDUG Conference Registration to any IDUG Conference in 2011 (North America, Europe, or Australia) provided by IDUG, plus up to $1,500 USD travel expense allowance provided by DBI. Approximate value of prize package: $3,500 USD
- 2nd Prize: Xbox 360 250GB Console with Kinect (approximate value $500) provided by IDUG.
- 3rd Prize: $100 Amazon.com Gift Certificate provided by DBI.
- Finalist Prizes: Each of the top 10 Contestants that are invited by the judges to participate in Finals Shows will win $50 Amazon.com Gift Certificates provided by DBI.
First, what is a Flashbook? This is a name that I made up to describe the short, easy-to-read books that we publish for conferences such as IBM’s Information on Demand Conference. IBM delivers a huge quantity of messages and content at the conferences, in newsletters, in blogs, and on websites. How can you possibly retain all the key messages? That’s why I like these Flashbooks so much. We create them so that you can take away the key messages for a particular product area.
We’ve received amazing feedback about these Flashbooks. People have been able to take away the key messages and share them with people back at the office. IBM employees like to hand these out at other events or when they visit customers.
So, if you didn’t get one…. how can you get one?
When I get these books created, I have three requirements.
1) Printed copies to hand out at events.
2) E-Versions that can be downloaded for free by anyone.
3) Printed copies that can be purchased for a very low price from amazon.com.
I’m happy to say that we now have the latest 5 books in amazon and well promoted on our DB2 Bookstore Website. Here are the books that we most recently produced:
DB2 pureScale: Risk Free Agile Scaling
by Paul Zikopoulos, Matt Huras, Aamer Sachedina, Paul Awad
DB2 10 for z/OS - Cost Savings ..... Out of the Box
by Roger Miller, David Beulke, Julian Stuhler, Surekha Pureka
The IBM Data Governance Unified Process: Driving Business Value with IBM Software and Best Practices
by Sunil Soares
Business Intelligence Strategy: A Framework for Achieving BI Excellence
by John Boyer, The Nielsen Company; Bill Frank, Johnson & Johnson; Brian Green, Blue Cross, Blue Shield of Tennessee; Tracy Harris, IBM; Kay Van De Vanter, The Boeing Company
IBM Cognos Analytics and Cloud Computing: Best Practices for Deploying Cognos Business Intelligence to the IBM Cloud
by Stephan Jou
If you’re an IBM employee and are planning an event where you’d like many copies of these books, contact me directly.
New IBM Press Book
Data Integration Blueprint and Modeling: Techniques for a Scalable and Sustainable Architecture
Anthony David Giordano
A complete best-practice data integration blueprint for reducing data warehouse costs and improving results
Mr. Giordano begins with an overview of the “patterns” of data integration, showing how to build blueprints that smoothly handle both operational and analytic data integration. Next, he walks through the entire project lifecycle, explaining each phase, activity, task, and deliverable through a complete case study. Finally, he shows how to integrate data integration with other information management disciplines, from data governance to metadata. The book’s appendices bring together key principles, detailed models, and a complete data integration glossary.
Save 35% and Free US shipping with coupon code:IBM4935
More details on the book:
Today’s enterprises are investing massive resources in data integration. Many possess thousands of point-to-point data integration applications that are costly, undocumented, and difficult to maintain. Data integration now accounts for a major part of the expense and risk of typical data warehousing and business intelligence projects--and, as businesses increasingly rely on analytics, the need for a blueprint for data integration is increasing now more than ever.
This book presents the solution: a clear, consistent approach to defining, designing, and building data integration components to reduce cost, simplify management, enhance quality, and improve effectiveness. Leading IBM data management expert Tony Giordano brings together best practices for architecture, design, and methodology, and shows how to do the disciplined work of getting data integration right.
Implementing repeatable, efficient, and well-documented processes for integrating data
Lowering costs and improving quality by eliminating unnecessary or duplicative data integrations
Managing the high levels of complexity associated with integrating business and technical data
Using intuitive graphical design techniques for more effective process and data integration modeling
Building end-to-end data integration applications that bring together many complex data sources
About the Author
Anthony Giordano is a partner in IBM’s Business Analytics and Optimization Consulting Practice and currently leads the Enterprise Information Management Service Line that focuses on data modeling, data integration, master data management, and data governance. He has more than 20 years of experience in the Information Technology field with a focus in the areas of business intelligence, data warehousing, and Information Management. In his spare time, he has taught classes in data warehousing and project management at the undergraduate and graduate levels at several local colleges and universities.
I recently read this article Highest paid enterprise IT jobs in demand for 2011, By Don Sears. This is a a countdown of the technology job titles in the United States with the most growth percentage between 2010 and 2011. The range for salaries—based on data published by staffing expert Robert Half Technology in its "2011 Salary Guide"—starts at a 4.5 percent increase and caps out at 5.5 percent. One of the jobs mentioned is Data Modeler. I can’t think of a better book to recommend for this job than the one just published by Anthony.
Did you miss the IBM Information on Demand Conference that took place in Las Vegas in October? Did you attend the conference and miss some sessions or would like to repeat some sessions? Join us on December 15 for the Virtual Event that you can take part in directly from your home or office! Free of charge!
Information On Demand 2010 is the premier conference for organizations applying information governance and analytics to drive innovation, business optimization and competitive differentiation. Information On Demand Virtual 2010 offers a unique opportunity to experience ‘a taste’ of the conference virtually.
Register now for this upcoming event!
- Attend presentations of conference sessions and customer success stories
- Chat with IBM information governance expert
- Experience keynote presentation on information governance featuring Forrester Research Principal Analyst Rob Karel and the conference’s general sessions on demand…at your leisure
- Experience presentations of the top five sessions at IOD Global Conference 2010 on demand…at your leisure
. Attendees joining us December 15 between the hours of 1:00 - 3:00pm EST will receive a complimentary paperback copy of “The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right”
by Dr. Atul Gawande
author and keynote speaker at Information On Demand. Book recipients from the November 17 2010 event, government owned entities and IBM employees are not eligible to receive the book.
Doors open at 12:30pm EST and scheduled sessions begin promptly at 1:00pm EST.
My suggestion would be to replay the sessions by any of the authors of the books that we had featured at the conference. See my post “Complete List of Book Signings at IOD Conference” for details. I was working at the conference so was only able to attend the keynotes, but I did however here the comments from attendees regarding the authors who were signing books. These attendees were really impressed with the sessions that were done by the authors.
Personally I'd encourage you to watch sessions by Steven Levitt, Stephan Dubnar, Mark Jeffries and Dr. Atul Gawande. I attended these sessions and would be happy to watch them a second or even a third time!
If you’ve never attended a Virtual Conference before, I encourage that you do. You’ll be very impressed with the level of interaction and the quality of the delivery method.
I’ve known this for the last week, but haven’t been able to blog about it till today! The authors of Freakonomics and SuperFreakonomics will be special guest speakers at this year’s IBM Information on Demand Conference. They are scheduled to speak at the General Session on Wednesday morning.
We’ve managed to arrange for Stephen Dubnar and Steven Levitt to come to the bookstore for attendees to get their books signed… the unfortunate things is that they only have 20 minutes available for the signing! Add this book signing to your schedule via the Smart Site Agenda Builder. Their session is Anc # 3779.
Have you read the books yet? I have listened to both books in audible versions and can speak endlessly about how much I enjoyed the stories in their books. I will purchase both copies in printed format so I can get these amazing authors to sign them!
About the books:
Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool? What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common? Why do drug dealers still live with their moms? How much do parents really matter? How did the legalization of abortion affect the rate of violent crime?
Four years in the making, SuperFreakonomics asks not only the tough questions, but the unexpected ones: What’s more dangerous, driving drunk or walking drunk? Why is chemotherapy prescribed so often if it’s so ineffective? Can a sex change boost your salary?
I’m very interested in hearing what they have to say to an IBM audience. I presume it will be related to IBM’s Smarter Planet initiative… which really is looking at the world in a different way much as the freak guys did in their books.
Publisher of the DB2 Certification Study Guides has just informed me of a sale they are having.
Starting today, all of the certification books on sale at 20% off of list until next Tuesday, August 24. This includes the latest one—DB2 9 System Administration for z/OS by Judy H. Nall.
You can see them all on our DB2 page. Please note that this is the general DB2 category page so not ALL of the books on that page are on sale, though all of the certification books are.
DB2 9 System Administration for z/OS: Certification Study Guide: Exam 737
DB2 9 Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 732
Susan Lawson and Daniel Luksetich
DB2 9 Advanced Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 734
Roger Sanders, Dwaine Snow
DB2 9 Fundamentals Certification Study Guide
DB2 9 Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 731
DB2 9 Database Administration Upgrade Certification Study Guide for Exam 736
All of these books were authored by experts who were part of the exam development team, the structure of the book matches the exam objectives, and there are sample test questions to help you prepare for the exam.
For information on the exams… see ibm.com/certify.
If you are attending the IBM Information on Demand Conference in October, you can take the exams free of charge and meet the authors. I have a book signing set up for Judy Nall on Tuesday October 26. Roger Sanders and Susan Lawson are running their Crammer Courses on Sunday October 24. Judy also trying to have a crammer course available the same day.
25 June - our Season 1 FINALE - YOU REQUESTED IT!!!
Berni Schiefer RETURNS to talk about DB2 LUW Storage Optimization and Best Practices. He will be joined by his peer Robin Grosman who is the manager of BPS development. What's BPS? Another IBM acronym of course! Berni tells me that "BPS is the DB2 code layer that does I/O to storage".
Registration links and additional details:
The two things that these books have in common are:
1) They were published by IBM Press (Pearson Education), IBM’s partner in publishing. Check out the deals that are being offered on IBM Press titles.
2) They were all authored by women. Normally I wouldn’t mention this…. but lately there has been plenty of news in the Canadian papers about the G20 and G8 summits that we are hosting this month. Part of the goal of the meetings is to discuss the plight of women in the world. So kudos to all the women in the world! Keep achieving greatness like these female authors.
Innovation Passport: The IBM First-of-a-Kind (FOAK) Journey From Research to Reality
by Mary Jo Frederich, Peter Andrews
- Get Inside IBM’s Breakthrough FOAK Program for Delivering Profitable Innovation!
- Learn from one of the world’s most successful innovation initiatives
- Align researchers, clients, and partners behind innovation that matters
- Get the right innovations to market fast
How can you promote innovation that delivers real, profitable business value–again and again, year after year? For 14 years, IBM’s FOAK program has done just that. In Innovation Passport, FOAK’s leaders share the powerful lessons they’ve learned. Through actual project examples, you’ll discover how to craft more effective processes for making innovation happen...encourage collaboration...manage innovation portfolios...protect intellectual property...and systematically improve the chances of marketplace adoption. Whatever your role in innovation, this book will help you do it better, faster, and more profitably.
The Social Factor: Innovate, Ignite, and Win through Mass Collaboration and Social Networking
by Maria Azua
- Harness the Power of Social Networking to Promote Innovation and Drive Growth
- A treasure trove of strategic and tactical insights for the business leader
- Provides relevant experience from a host of powerful case studies and compelling business scenarios
- Secrets for avoiding costly mistakes that can cripple a social networking initiative
Intelligent Mentoring: How IBM Creates Value through People, Knowledge, and Relationships
by Sheila Forte Trammel, Audrey J. Murrell, Diana A. Bing
Use mentoring to develop tomorrow’s world-class business leaders
Actionable solutions and best practices from IBM’s breakthrough mentoring program
• Embrace mentoring as a high-performance work practice
Maximizing, capturing, and communicating the value-added impact of mentoring
• Set the right goals for mentoring: then achieve them
Utilize mentoring to strengthen organizational learning, improve retention, promote innovation, and more
• Use mentoring to solve your organization’s most “wicked” problems
How mentoring can help you respond to complex, tangled challenges you’ve never faced before
Agile Career Development: Lessons and Approaches from IBM
by Mary Ann Bopp - Sheila Forte Trammel – Diana Bing
How do you make career development work for both the employee and the business? IBM® has done it by tightly linking employee-driven career development programs with corporate goals. In Agile Career Development, three of IBM’s leading HR innovators show how IBM has accomplished this by illustrating various lessons and approaches that can be applied to other organizations as well. This book is for every HR professional, learning or training manager, executive, strategist, and any other business leader who wants to create a high performing organization.
Enjoy these books!
On Monday and Tuesday this week, the CCDB2UG conference
was held in Markham, ON. I was very happy to be invited to take part in a very small way to speak to attendees during the reception and to network with people following the reception.
I handed out my business card to everyone who I met in the hopes that they will become readers of my blog. I hope one or two of you are people I met in person on Monday!
The message that I delivered to the attendees was that our Education and Skills team are dedicated to provide resources to people who want to gain skills on DB2 and other IM products. We have self study courses
, traditional courses
, ILO courses
, certification programs
, and more! I have blogged about these resources in the past and will continue to do so in the future, so keep coming back!
During the event I spoke to many of the excecutives of this user group: Yvonne, Joe, Tim, Dawn, Murray... and others! While talking to them I realized that each and every one of them are using a piece of advice that is prominent in Sam Lightstone's
book: Making it Big in Software
. That advice is to become a domain expert which will allow you to build your own skills but to help others build their skills and to build your network of like minded people. Can you imagine the benefits of knowing people throughout the industry who have the same passion and skills as you have?
Tim told me that he has attended just about every user group meeting for the past 25 years! I think the dedication that he and others put into user groups is amazing and hope that there are people early in their career who are willing to contribute to keep such an amazing community viable well into the future.
I hope you enjoy my blog entries!
I enjoy all the DB2Night Show events that Scott Hayes arranges, but these three up coming events are truly ones that you shouldn't miss!
The DB2Night Show Episode #17
DB2 LUW Performance Update & Best Practices with special guest Berni Schiefer, Distinguished Engineer, IBM Toronto Lab
In the DB2 LUW Community, Berni Schiefer is a man that doesn't need an introduction - but, just in case you are newer to DB2 LUW (like one of the many Oracle converts), Berni is "the performance guy". He's a Distinguished Engineer who leads the Information Management Performance and Benchmarks team at the IBM Toronto Lab. Berni has been a frequent speaker at IDUG conferences and other venues, and he gives terrific presentations that share DB2 Performance Benchmark results and performance best practices.
RESERVE YOUR Studio Audience FREE SEAT: Friday, April 30, 2010 at 10am CENTRAL.
We will be broadcasting at your favorite screen resolution. For audio, VoIP and local country telephone numbers will be available for US, Canada, European countries, Australia, and New Zealand. You are responsible for your transportation to our "Studio", popping your own popcorn, and your favorite beverage.
The DB2Night Show Episode #18
The TOP TEN DB2 LUW Mistakes with special guest Klaas Brant, IBM DB2 Gold Consultant & Founder, KBCE
Scott and Klaas were SKYPE chatting recently and were lamenting the long list of frequent mistakes that DB2 LUW professionals make. Klaas came up with the idea of doing a Top 10 List of common mistakes as a DB2Night Show theme.
Klaas Brant is the founder of KBCE, a company that specializes in DB2. He specializes in administration, tuning and backup/recovery strategies. Klaas has been working with DB2 for more than 20 years and has published many DB2 articles. He has been the organizer of the DB2 Symposium for more than 10 years and is the chairman of the Dutch DB2 User Group (DDUG). He is an IBM certified DB2 Database Administrator and a member of IBM's DB2 Gold Consultants Team.
During this episode, we'll cover Klass Brant's Top 10 Common Mistakes made with DB2 LUW. You host, Scott Hayes, will add a couple of his own too. What mistakes do you commonly find? Send us an email or contribute to a discussion in our show's LinkedIn group.
RESERVE YOUR Studio Audience FREE SEAT: Friday, 7 May, 2010 at 11am CENTRAL.
We're going to set aside technical DB2 skills in this episode, and instead we're going to have a nice chat with Sam Lightstone, author of the new book "Making It Big in Software
". We're going to try to find out "What does it take to be successful?" Certainly technical skills are part of the equation, but how can one accelerate their career?
In his book, Sam covers these topics and more:
- Get your next job in software development
- Master the nontechnical skills crucial to your success
- Work the organization to move up rapidly
- Successfully manage your time, projects, and life
- Minimize software project overruns
- Successfully manage your time, projects, and life
- Avoid killer mistakes that could destroy your career
- Move up to "medium-shot", "big-shot", and finally, "visionary"
- Launch your own winning software company
You might also be interested to know that Sam Lightstone was a significant contributor "brain" behind the development of the IBM DB2 Design Advisor (db2advis).
RESERVE YOUR Studio Audience FREE SEAT: Friday, May 28, 2010 at 10am CENTRAL.
The extremely popular Assess & Save promotion
is back again... and it starts today, April 1 and continues to June 1. Don't miss your opportunity to save while you earn a very well accepted certification.
According to Kate
, people who took part last year saved $100 on each exam they took and passed. And, they passed. At least 90% of them passed the exam that they took.
How does Assess & Save work?
First take and pass an assessment exam. This will cost you $10 USD. On passing the assessment exam, you'll be sent a voucher to take the actual exam at 50% off the regular price.
To study, see a few of my previous blog entries:
Good luck on your exams!
Enjoy the savings :)
Thanks to Leon
for providing me with this amazing data about the amazing success of the DB2 Express-C On-Campus series of books
IBM DB2 Express-C is the community edition of the DB2 data server that you can download and deploy for FREE. The target audience is small businesses or developers and business partners who serve these customers.
Not only is DB2 Express-C
easy to install and use, but it contains the core functions of the more scalable editions of DB2 such as pureXML and self-managing capabilities. You can find out more about the requirements to use DB2 Express-C on the "About DB2 Express-C
To support DB2 Express-C a series of On-Campus books have been created to support this community. Since the DB2 Express-C product can be downloaded for free, we needed to make sure that we could help people develop their skills for free. Thanks to Leon, Raul, Rav and many others, we have many books available for people to learn for free:
Getting Started with DB2 Express-C
has been downloaded just shy of 83,000 times and distributed to more than 100,000 people world-wide. Just think of that! That's a lot of people learning and using DB2... and creating applications that run on any edition of DB2, regardless of the platform. This book is available in 9 languages, so the coverage is world-wide.
The team who created these books are planning to provide even more! There are 26 new books planned for 2010.
Now the success story behind the success of these books - there were 107 authors involved in the writing and translation of these books. 80 people from IBM and 27 outside of IBM. I hope each and everyone of these people benefit greatly from this career development stepping stone. Writing about anything makes you a better expert in that topic, and we all know that writing is one of the most valuable skills for a person to have.
Do you have your copy of DB2 Express-C and the supporting books yet?
IDUG's annual North American conference is taking place in Tampa Florida this year. May 10 - 14, 2010. Have you been able to get funding to attend the conference yet? If not, maybe this information will help you.
The educational opportunities available at the conference will help make you smarter! And if you're smarter about your job, you'll be more effective, make fewer mistakes and be a real asset to your employer! Right?
Take a look at the conference schedule that is now available online
. With this tool, it is now easier for you to build your conference curriculum by allowing you to search by program or project to find sessions specific to your area of expertise.
Here is a sample of the sessions you’ll find this May in Tampa:
D06 (DB2 for LUW): "DB2 Security – Ammo From the Trenches
", Rebecca Bond
, Author of "Understanding DB2 9 Security
B10 (DB2 for z/OS): "Package Versioning for High Availability
", John Maenpaa
, Health Care Service Corporation
C08 (DB2 for LUW): "Successfully Managing the DB2 LUW Workload Manager
", Scott Hayes
, Gold Consultant, DBI Software
C09 (DB2 for LUW): "DB2 pureScale: Why It's So Much Better than Oracle RAC
", Paul Zikopoulos
, IBM Corporation
S03 (Cross-platform): "The Vision of Integrated Data Management - Past, Present and Future of Tooling
", Curt Cotner
, IBM Fellow, IBM Corporation
New this year at IDUG, you will also find a full-offering of hands-on labs
. Available all four days of the conference, the labs include individual work-stations that allow you to explore new DB2 features and try out products without the hassle of obtaining and setting up software. This year’s hands-on labs include:
DB2 Lab 1: DB2 for LUW - All About DB2 9.7
DB2 Lab 2: DB2 for z/OS - Getting Started with DB2 for z/OS pureXML
DB2 Lab 3: DB2 for LUW - DB2 9.7 Performance Metrics and Monitoring
DB2 Lab 4: DB2 for z/OS - Develop High-Performance Java Applications on z/OS Using IBM pureQuery
DB2 Lab 5: DB2 for LUW - Workload Management
DB2 Certification Exams:
Do you have your current certifications yet? The exams are available free of charge to attendees of the conference (3 exams per attendee). This is a HUGE savings of $200 PER EXAM!
Make sure you are ready to pass the exam by taking a crammer course on May 10 for last-minute preparation for the exam. These full day seminars require an additional fee.
Z04: DB2 for Linux, UNIX and Windows - DBA Certification (541) Preparation Course
Date: May 10, 2010 09:00 AM – 04:30 PM
This training is designed to introduce the student to the concepts a test candidate must know in order to take and pass the DB2 9.7 DBA for Linux, UNIX and Windows certification exam (Exam 541). The material for this course is aligned with the 541 exam objectives.
Objective 1: Provide the student with an overview of the DB2 Certification Exam testing program.
Objective 2: Introduce the student to basic DB2 9.7 Database Administration fundamentals.
Objective 3: Provide the student with information on new features and functionality that were introduced with DB2 9.7.
Objective 4: Provide the student with the information needed to correctly answer questions they are likely to see on the DB2 9.7 for Linux, UNIX and Windows Database Administration Certification Exam (Exam 541).
Objective 5: Provide the student with an overview of the certification testing software.
Z01: DB2 9 for z/OS DBA Certification Crammer Course
Date: May 10, 2010 09:00 AM – 04:30 PM
This is a high-level certification preparation course intended to help you take DB2 9 Family Fundamentals exam (730) and DB2 9 for z/OS Database Administration exam (732). Passing of these exams will result in certification as an IBM Certified Solutions Expert - DB2 V9 z/OS Database Administration. Participants are expected to have fundamental knowledge of relational principles in addition to applied working knowledge of DB2 z/OS V8 and basic knowledge of V9 features. This will be a lecture-only class with no labs.
This session offers an intense, overall review of those areas that will be on the certification exams (both the 730 – DB2 9 Family Fundamentals and the 732 – DB2 9 for z/OS), providing a comprehensive review for those planning on taking the certification exams to become an IBM Certified Solutions Expert - DB2 9 for z/OS Database Administration.
Objective 1: Present information to help students pass the 730 and 732 exams to become a DB2 9 for z/OS Certified DBA.
Objective 2: Relevant Database Administration Topics
Objective 3: Relevant Application Programming Topics
Objective 4: Relevant System Administration Topics
Objective 5: Relevant SQL Topics
Register now to qualify for discounts on your conference fees:
Early Bird Discount
: Register on or before March 26, 2010 and save $150
on your full-conference registration.IDUG Mentor Program
: Need to get thrifty with your training dollars this year? Through this incomparable loyalty reward program, IDUG members who have attended five or more IDUG conferences in the past ten years have the opportunity to bring a first-time attendee from the same company for an unprecedented 80% discount
to learn more about IDUG 2010 North America.
Do you need more help justifying your attendance at this confernece? See IDUG.org/na
for further tips.
Everyone is talking about e-books and even more e-reading devices have been announced and are waiting for your books to be loaded! Where does IBM stand in all of this?
Personally I think that IBM has been at the leading edge of having e-books available about our products and technologies. Even if you don't read them, surely you've heard of IBM Redbooks
. For more than 40 years, IBM has been creating "how to" books to help you build your skills on our products and technolgies. There are half a million IBM Redbooks downloaded every year! IBM Redbooks are available to you for FREE in PDF format. Read these books on your computer, laptop or any device that will accept PDF documents.
Beyond the IBM Redbooks, you can find product documentation for DB2 products
in PDF format as well as integrated within the product through online help. Again, as these are PDF files, read them on any device that allows PDFs.
has published a wide variety of books that can be purchased in the traditional book format, Kindle format
, PDF format
, or through online book engines such as Safari Books Online
and Books 24x7
. If you are an employee with IBM, you automatically have access to all the books available on Books 24x7. If you are a student at a University, you may also have access to Books 24x7. Check with your administrator.
A series of books "For the community by the community
" are available from developerWorks. These books are available for you to download for free, in PDF format. Titles in this series are being added all the time... and good news for who want translated editions. The books are being translated by members of the community as well, so you may find a translation that is suitable for you.
If you are looking for books specifically for DB2 pureXML, check out the list of free ebooks
that are available for you to download in PDF format.
If you're not sure yet if you want to read books online or via a device, give it a try to see what you think. You can download chapters
from various Web 2.0 and Social Media books to see if you like it or not.
Many of the publishers who I work with are presenting e-book strategies to me for future publications. The idea is that the books will be available immediatly in an online format of some kind, but the books are only printed when they are requested / purchased by a reader. This means that the book can be more easily updated when necessary and the publisher will not have a warehouse full of printed books. This makes sense, doesn't it?
Do readers want online books exclusively? I don't think so, yet. Perhaps there will always be a need for a printed book... and if you could see my desk, you'd know immediately that I am a big fan of printed books! I got a Kindle for Christmas, so I've started to see the benefits of reading on such a device. And really, Kindle is just the beginning. Everywhere you look there are different devices being made available: Sony, Nook, iPad, apps on iPhones and Blackberries, etc. I can't keep up with all the new devices, but I found this website
that lists many that I've never even heard of! So, take a look if you are interested.
All of this combined tells me IBM is very into this ebook trend AND that 2010 is the Year of the e-Book... at least in terms of supply... so we'll have to wait to see if you the readers buy into the ebook technologies.
If you want to add to this discussion, take a look at this group that I've created on ChannelDB2.com: Electronic Books
Today I got an invite from Rav Ahuja
who has just created a new group on ChannelDB2.com called "Chat with the Lab
" . If you are a member of this group, you'll automatically receive a notification for upcoming or previously recorded Chat with the Lab sessions.
Chat with the Lab sessions are free webinars from the IBM Labs. Join the experts to learn about DB2-related breakthrough technology, best practices, and to get your questions answered during a live Q & A session.
Some of the previous Chat with the Lab sessions include:
Thanks Rav for setting this group up! I'm sure you'll have many people join the group to stay on top of these amazing sessions.
It's been awhile since I blogged about the ChannelDB2.com
. I've noticed that we now have cool posters on the walls of the lab to build awareness for ChannelDB2.com. The poster says
ChannelDB2.com now has 2,388 members, 71 groups, 259 videos and presentations, discussions, and links to free books and software. Are you a member yet? I've noticed that the university relations teams are reaching out to people in universities across the world and encouraging people to join groups that are specific to their country or university. If your country / university isn't represented, add it!
The videos are very interesting interviews and presentations featuring various people inside and outside of IBM. You'll find topics on just about everything covered in these videos. The best thing? If you have an educational video that you would like to share, you can add it to the collection.
The groups allow you to give and get information about related topics. For instance, one of my groups is DB2 in Books
where I post information about the latest published books, events related to the books, and discounts if they are available. If you are a member of the group, you are able to ask questions that can be answered by me or perhaps an author of one of the books. If you aren't yet a member of this or other groups, it is easy to join... and you won't get too much mail as a result of joining.
You can also create groups yourself. If you feel that there is a topic that isn't yet covered, create a group and invite people to join.Raul Chong
and his team have been busy creating e-books for you to download for free. These are full books in the 300-page range and can be read on your computer. The two latest titles include "DB2 Express-C: Updated for 9.7" and "IBM Data Studio for DB2". These books are part of the "Getting Started" series and will introduce you to the software and how to use it. The books are full of screen captures and are easy to read.
In conjunction with the books is the free software. From ChannelDB2.com, you'll find links to the Express-C software that you can download for free to try all the latest features. If you haven't tried DB2 yet, this is the best way to get your hands on it to see how easy it is to use and learn.
Lastly are the blogs. You may already know that PlanetDB2.com is an aggregate of all DB2 related blogs. These blogs are also pulled into ChannelDB2.com, so you can come to one place for all kinds of important information.ChannelDB2.com
is a way for you to actively participate in learning, sharing, and discussing the DB2 products.
If you are a member, ask me to be your friend :)
Join me (as Scott's special guest) on Feb 12 at 11 am EST on The DB2Night Show Episode #12
- "The Wild Wonderful World of DB2 Resources
What will I talk about?
I'm open to suggestions, but I'll likely cover the following:
1) Books published in 2009.
2) Books that are expected to publish in 2010.
3) Websites where you can get additional information about the books and have a chance to communicate directly with the authors of the books.
4) Opportunities for you to get involved in writing / reviewing or promoting books.
5) How to get a discount on books.
6) Future of publishing as ebook readers are becoming increasingly popular.
Is there something else you'd like me to discuss as well? Let me know!
Thanks for the opportunity Scott!Susan
Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends! I hope you have a safe and beautiful holiday with those who you love!
For those of us who are not in the US, this is typically a quiet week. If you are looking for something to do if you are experiencing a few quiet days, here are some suggestions:Replay of Raul Chong's DB2 9.7 Technical Update
: Ignore the message that the session is over... as there is a replay button on the page as well. There were many people who joined the session live... so if you missed it, by all means take advantage of the replay!Replay of the DB2 NighShow episode
s. Join Scott Hayes
and his guests for a variety of topics. All sessions are recorded and more are planned. Enjoy!IOD at Your Desk
... Yes, you can replay many of the sessions that took place at IOD in Vegas at the end of October, including the Malcolm Gladwell
Continue or Begin your Certification Journey. Use the checklist
that I created or read more about the process of getting certified
Join or catch up with one of our communities, including PlanetDB2
, (DB2 in Books
), and My DeveloperWorks
(see the list of available books
... but there are many opportunities to learn on this site!!)
Read one of my favourite blog entries: Trying to Get Fired?
Thanks for reading!!Susan
Join this group created by Surekha Parekh
to catch up on any webcasts that you may have missed. This group
list all DB2 for z/OS webcasts & teleconferences available to you FREE on
demand all year !