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October RPG and DB2 Summit to Address Increasing Need to Justify IT Education

Summit to offer updated curriculum including RPG and the Web, XML, and Web services.



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System i Developer, a consortium of educators on IBM i development technologies, has announced new content for the next RPG & DB2 Summit, which will be held October 23-25 at the Sofitel in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In addition to an updated curriculum focused on IBM i development technologies, such as RPG IV, SQL, DB2 for i, XML, RPG and the Web, Web Services and Mobilizing RPG, the October event will feature two new offerings that address growing business pressure to show return on investment in education and technology expenditures.

First, the Headstart Seminar line-up on Monday, October 22, will now include a full-day focus on PHP for RPGers, comprised of a four-hour foundations course in the morning and a four-hour hands-on lab in the afternoon. Taught by System i Developer partner Jon Paris, these two seminars are designed to work together to cement PHP knowledge and make it possible to attain basic PHP proficiency in a single day.

Second, on the afternoon of Wednesday, October 24, IBM’s Mike Cain will lead a round-table discussion on how to communicate the benefits of running business applications on the IBM i platform to upper management. He and other experts will share ideas and resources to help bridge the business/technology communications gap.

Jon Paris notes that RPG & DB2 Summit attendees regularly commend the group on the ROI and the immediate payback of the Summit. “More and more these days, our attendees are expected to demonstrate the ROI that education provides, and we’ve seen an increase in the number of attendees who use phrases like ‘ROI’, ‘justify’ and ‘pays for itself’ to describe their Summit experience. I particularly like it when an attendee comes up to me at lunchtime on the first day and tells me that the conference ‘has already paid for itself.’ It’s a real kick to know we’ve connected with them and provided the content that allows them to generate immediate, tangible results for their business.”

Laura Chambers, senior programmer/analyst at Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America, explains how the RPG & DB2 Summit provided immediate ROI for her. "The Summit doesn’t offer “Hello World" examples…it offers “REAL” world information for real-world problems that you can put to actual use upon returning to the office. If it is Susan extolling the productivity virtues of RSE, I think about how I can explain the benefits to upper management and implement it with my team. If it is Scott sharing some of his genius, my mind goes to existing challenges at work that I could solve using UDF’s or accessing external databases. The same holds true for Jon, Paul, and Aaron. Their information isn’t geared towards the last two decades, it is NOW. It is information that will take us into the future."

Danny Exum, IT director at Shelton Trucking, also measures the value of conferences based on return on investment. “When you leave the Summit,” he says, “you can immediately justify the cost by the knowledge you gained from industry experts. They do such a great job. Each year they add enough relevant material to justify returning. I hope I can return for a fifth year!"

Many RPG & DB2 attendees increase the value of their education by sharing the information with co-workers. “I have been doing ‘lunch and learns’ with my team since the spring Summit to disseminate all of the ‘good stuff’ I learned,” says Deborah Stickler, programmer/analyst at CU*Answers. “I truly had a lot of fun at Summit. You learn a lot, but the more you learn the more you know how much you don't know, so I hope to attend another SiD conference next year."

“Despite how hard everyone works at the Summit,” says Paris, “we always seem to find plenty of time for good humor and fun. That’s the secret sauce that keeps everyone motivated and eager for more, even when you think your brain can’t hold another thing.”

The October RPG & DB2 Summit will feature several well-known IBM i development instructors, including Jon Paris, Susan Gantner, Paul Tuohy, Kent Milligan, Michael Cain, Scott Klement, Barbara Morris, Bruce Vining, Scott Salisbury and Aaron Bartell.

It is also sponsored by two leading media organizations. The preliminary session list can be reviewed at

Registration rates are $1,095 for the core conference ($995 for System i Developer alumni) through Friday, August 31. Conference attendees may add one Headstart Seminar for $215, or two seminars for $295. Registration includes printed handouts, a CD that contains electronic handouts for all of the sessions, plus breakfast and lunch each day of the conference.

For more information on attending the RPG & DB2 Summit, visit, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 603-924-3769, or toll-free 866-716-5409.

Comprised of top experts in RPG IV, SQL, DB2, ILE, RSE, PHP and Web technologies, System i Developer delivers the very best RPG and DB2-focused education available.  Its cornerstone conference, the RPG & DB2 Summit, provides an interactive, total-immersion experience to RPG and DB2 developers who want to stay abreast of the latest advancements and learn how to apply specific RPG and DB2 techniques to keep their software applications vibrant and innovative. As independent educators with long-standing relationships with IBM, members of the consortium also work with individual organizations to provide well-informed, unbiased advice and training on any IBM i development topic—from basic best practices to the newest, most advanced techniques.

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