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Ah, the downswing after a big announcement. News has been dissected, crystal balls need polishing after being breathed on by IBM i swamis, and I'm almost unpacked from COMMON. But who will carry the momentum torch until next time?

steve pitcherWritten by Steve Pitcher

In searching for a topic to cover, I thought I'd do a bit of a 180 with this edition of Wheelhouse. I want to talk about how we connect with each other. Not in a personal sense, but a practical one.

 

I had a conversation a few weeks ago with some IBM i writing peers. The discussion turned to how we can get people informed about IBM i, specifically the content that we create.

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Maybe I'm a little naive or too young to grasp the concept of allowing users to bypass company policies and procedures in order to achieve a result that's usually more insecure than Scooby Doo spending a day at the haunted mansion.

steve pitcherWritten by Steve Pitcher

The sales and marketing department at XYZ Paper Company needs an application that allows employees to more effectively manage promotions. Ideally, they want to be able to cross-reference those promotions with sales results to show ROI. It sounds simple enough: instead of going to their IT department with a request to facilitate the business requirement, the sales and marketing department searches on Google and finds a tool pretty quickly.

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You can't look online these days without reading about cloud computing or a variant term like Platform as a Service (PaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), or Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). I liked it best when cloud computing was called "outsourcing."

steve pitcherWritten by Steve Pitcher

Language is a beautiful thing. I've always had a fascination with how language sells things. The ability to blur perceptions with language is a true art form. For instance, it's much easier for a town to construct a "correctional facility" than a "prison." It just sounds better. Correctional facility doesn't mean anything specific. Those two words taken literally describe nothing more than a place where corrective action is taken. Think of the word "prison." The idea of having a prison constructed in your neighborhood automatically brings thoughts of crime, inmates, bars, barbed wire, and armed guards. Then you have to wonder about the property value of your home.

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Most companies do EDI. And use one of the major VANs to do it. We don't think about VANs much. They just work. And make EDI possible. But change could be coming. What are you going to do about it?

david shireyWritten by David Shirey

Are you doing EDI? Seems like most everyone is. Ten (or is it 20?) years after a very important fellow declared that EDI was dead, it's still the circulation system of modern commerce. And the veins that keep that old blood moving are the VANs that we have come to know and love.

 

They take in our transactions, pass them on to one of their brother or sister VANs, and pick up the replies, all while maintaining security and backup. Set up of new documents and trading partners is done by the VAN, and once done you can forget about it.

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In many of our environments, the "speed of cloud" is no faster than the "speed of APYPTF" or the "speed of RSTLICPGM."

steve pitcherWritten by Steve Pitcher

That's right. I said it.

 

When I see a software demo or presentation that blows the doors off the current version, then I want it. Badly. Isn't that the point? Great presentation. Great demo. There's an engaging speaker. There's a buzz in the room and on Twitter. You can tell that your users would get immediate benefits when you load that new version. They're going to love this!

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When you get old enough for your head to reach over the fence to have a look, that's when people start throwing rocks at it.

steve pitcherWritten by Steve Pitcher

A few points were raised in the comments section, via email, and on Twitter and LinkedIn regarding my last column. While the majority of the comments were positive and the spirit of the article was understood, a few responses should be brought to light. Most of those who had a complaint about the article jumped right to the subject of "the name." Ah, the familiar name issue. No mention of adding content to the blogging world, using the #IBMi hashtag on Twitter, or increasing the visibility and solidarity of a strong base of IBM i customers. Just "the name."

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If you manage remote or satellite teams, this book is a must-read!

michael floydWritten by Michael Floyd

I really loved this book!

 

Over the years, I have managed satellite developers in England, France, India, Australia, and Canada (I'm currently in Southern California). I wish I had read Managing Without Walls years ago, before I started managing remote developers.

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steve pitcherAs IBM i professionals, we need to ensure our community is growing along with the operating system. And in that spirit, how do we give our IBM i community the equivalent of a Technology Refresh?

Written by Steve Pitcher

Just what can we do for IBM i in 2014?

 

I've been thinking about this question as others have written their 2013 wrap-ups, looking back on advances such as IBM i 7.1 Technology Refresh 6 and 7, the POWER7+ announcements and teasers about POWER8, finally having IBM Connections and IBM Notes Traveler on IBM i (which I'm still just ecstatic about), the PowerLinux investments, updates to IBM Access Client Solutions, IBM Navigator for i, and much, much more. Many people have covered all of these topics throughout the year by way of articles, blogs, tweets, webcasts, and conference sessions. It's been a grand year for the platform, and for many, talking about it has been a labor of love done in the true spirit of volunteering.

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  • White Paper: Node.js for Enterprise IBM i Modernization

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    FortraIT managers hoping to find new IBM i talent are discovering that the pool of experienced RPG programmers and operators or administrators is small.

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