IBM zEnterprise Technology Summit – May 6th, Washington, DC

Posted by Kim May on March 21, 2014 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, DB2 for z/OS, IBM DB2 Services, IDAA, Optim, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , .

IBM has scheduled a second presentation of the 2014 zEnterprise Technology Summit due to the snowstorm that hit in January when the event ran originally.  If you are in the area and have time to attend, please do!  Information on the event is below; register on the IBM site here.  There are several other events scheduled across the US in 2014 – view them on the IBM site here.

IBM zEnterprise Technology Summit Tuesday, May 6, Washington, DC

New technology is stretching IT budgets in many directions, forcing IT to find better ways of meeting business demands in increasingly complex data centers. Read More…

2014 IBM zEnterprise Summit – Next Week in Washington, DC

Posted by Kim May on January 17, 2014 under DB2 Education, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Stars, IBM DB2 Services, IDAA, TFG Blog. Tags: , , .

IBM will host the first zEnterprise Summit for 2014 at the Marriott in Washington, DC on January 21st (next Tuesday!)  I encourage you to attend f you are in the area and your schedule allows.  Your biggest challenge will be figuring out which of the many sessions to attend.  The announcement information is below; the complete agenda and registration are on the IBM website here.  I hope to see you there.

Abstract:

New technology is stretching IT budgets in many directions, forcing IT to find better ways of meeting business demands in increasingly complex data centers. With enterprise technology from IBM, you can continue to advance and close the gaps between where you are and where you want to be.

Attend the IBM zEnterprise Technology Summit and you’ll come away with plenty of valuable information that will help you continue your own trek to the summit.   We’ll show you how the unique capabilities of zEnterprise solutions fit into an enterprise private cloud, how integrated analytics can support better decision-making and new choices for delivering services faster and with more flexibility. Read More…

2013 Recap and DB2 Support Trends to Watch in 2014

Posted by Kim May on January 5, 2014 under DB2 Education, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Training Services Delivery Partner, International DB2 Users Group (IDUG), TFG Blog. Tags: , , , .

I spent some time this past week reviewing our 2013 performance, which was terrific, and planning for 2014.  It was a good exercise in looking at what seems to be working for The Fillmore Group, as well as the trends that seem to be changing the way we are engaged and supporting Information Management users.

In terms of trends I am surprised, and quite honestly a bit reassured by, the number of consulting engagements we’ve been authorized to work remotely.  The expense and wear and tear from travel that is frequently associated with working onsite at a client’s location cannot be overestimated.  However, up until about two years ago, we did almost 100% of our billable work at customer locations.  I was shocked at how much this has changed.  I hope this is an indication of more confidence in our consultants, who perform work at a high level regardless of where they sit, but also I understand this also reflects more confidence in the tools and technologies that enable us to work and communicate effectively when we work remotely.  Kudos to all the consultants making their way to the airport tonight, but also many thanks to the customers who trust in our professionalism and communication skills and are allowing many members of our team to sleep in their own beds tonight.

The second trend surprising me is the silence from the DB2 community around the IBM Global Skills Initiative.  By outsourcing training IBM has essentially unraveled the lifeline that keeps technical skills current and enables customers to make use of the wonderful solutions available.  This troubles me – I am not sure if this is an indication of the aging IT workforce (“I learned the basics years ago; nothing has really changed”) or the constriction of education funding available to support skills.  I expected a revolt!  Instead, while I see IDUG flourishing and third party training options increasing (both of which are great for the overall DB2 ecosystem in my opinion), I fear the decline in training will parallel a decline in new product adoption.  I hope, as the Global Training Providers get a better handle on how to deliver IBM education, that offerings and options – and enrollment – will increase.  We view lifelong education as one of the requirements – and pleasures – of life in the world of technology; I hope it isn’t stifled or relegated to slide decks and 30 minute presentations on concepts.

Finally, a trend that I intend to address as best I can in 2014 is Procurement and E-cig Twigg’s popular e-juice guide.  Why, in the world of cost cutting and expecting people to do more with less is the ability to engage with customer organizations becoming so terribly difficult?  We’ve been an IBM Business Partner for decades and have established our organization in many ways.  In the past year we have run into multiple situations where technical managers who are trusted with million dollar budgets are bound by Procurement teams whose job seems to be to make it nearly impossible to engage reasonably priced resources to support business critical projects.  When our consultants are only able to engage as a subcontractor to a subcontractor (this is the case with several of our current customers) and the rate the customer ultimately pays is excessively high, no one wins.  I am not sure how I will overcome this, but I plan to attack it in 2014!

A healthy and prosperous 2014 to everyone in the DB2 community!

 

Frank’s IOD Presentation Scheduled

Posted by Kim May on August 26, 2013 under Big Data, BigInsights, BLU Acceleration, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, Frank Fillmore, Hadoop, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Pure Systems, IDAA, Netezza, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , .

For those of you planning to attend this year’s Information on Demand (IOD) conference in Las Vegas, starting November 3rd, please join us for Frank Fillmore’s session, IPT-2150-B, “IBM Data Retrieval Technologies: RDBMS, BLU, IBM Netezza, and Hadoop“.  The session is scheduled for Tuesday, November 5th, from 1:45-2:45pm.

The session abstract is below.  In the session Frank will share his experience with IBM’s solutions to help determine which is best to meet your organization’s unique needs.

Abstract:  IBM offers four distinct data retrieval technologies: the traditional RDBMS, which primarily relies on indexes to speed access; the new BLU Acceleration columnar compression database; IBM PureData System for Analytics (IBM Netezza), which deploys racks of Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) processors to parse the data; and IBM InfoSphere BigInsights, which is the IBM distribution of Hadoop. Choices are good to have, but how do you choose which technology to apply to a particular business use case? In this session, you learn how these techniques differ, including their relative strengths and weaknesses, to help you make an informed choice.

TFG’s VAP is Re-upped!

Posted by Kim May on July 25, 2013 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Migrations, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , .

We live in a TLA (Three Letter Acronym) happy world, and there’s one very special TLA that very few IBM customers – and even IBM’ers – are aware of – VAP.  We have a VAP that we are very proud of and today received notification from IBM that it was recently revalidated.  I thought I should write about it, because VAP really is the best way for customers to buy IBM solutions.  Even if the VAP you need isn’t one we offer, ask your IBM team or Business Partner if they offer a VAP for the solution you are considering.

VAP stands for Value Advantage Plus.  Not exactly clear, huh?  Well, basically what a VAP does is offers IBM Business Partners a discount on IBM software solutions when they bundle services and training.   This does two things:  1) it offers an incentive to Business Partners to include services and training in a solution proposal, and 2) it reduces the cost of software to the partner.

Most technical solutions require technical assistance to implement; anyone who has been given a redbook and told to figure it out knows how difficult a do-it-yourself implementation is, and we have all unfortunately become accustomed to the software license cost being the only cost discussed when purchasing IBM software.  The second benefit, reduced cost to the Business Partner should, if you are working with an honest and ethical partner (think The Fillmore Group!) result in a lower price for you, the customer.

The Fillmore Group’s VAP is for IBM replication solutions, including Q Replication and ICDC.  We are currently working on both Q Replication and ICDC implementation projects and have historically been the exclusive provider of public IBM education for these products.

If you are considering a replication solution purchase and implementation please let us know – we would be happy to help you take advantage of this little known (terrific!) way to make sure your solution project is a success.

 

Break Free from Oracle Webinar

Posted by Kim May on June 21, 2013 under BLU Acceleration, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 Gold Consultants, DB2 Migrations, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Pure Systems, Oracle, pureScale, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , .

The Fillmore Group will deliver a free webinar Wednesday, June 26th, from 11am-noon EDT on the value of migrating from Oracle to DB2.  We have been assisting customers with Oracle to DB2 migrations for the past few years and believe that with the recent DB2 BLU enhancements and IULA announcement the time is right to break free!

Register Here.

What’s an IULA?  It’s the IBM Unlimited License Agreement, a new way to license DB2 use that provides a low cost entry point to purchase DB2, and allows customers to predict and control their ongoing maintenance and support costs.  

As long-time believers in the superiority of IBM’s database technology, we also want to spread the word about the technical enhancements announced for the new IBM BLU Acceleration.  With beta customers reporting 90%-95% compression and amazing performance improvements, the DB2 vs. Oracle performance comparison is a great story to tell.

Most importantly, however, is helping current and prospective IBM customers understand where IBM’s efforts to compete directly with Oracle will deliver the most benefit to their organizations.  Whether it’s cost, performance, or simplifying their in-house database environment, we want to help each one understand why and how IBM has the lead.

I hope you will join us!

Webinar Thursday: IBM Big Data Announcements – What You Should Know

Posted by Kim May on May 6, 2013 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, Big Data, BigInsights, BLU Acceleration, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 Migrations, Hadoop, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Pure Systems, Informix, InfoSphere Streams, Netezza, pureScale, TFG Blog. Tags: .

On April 30th IBM announced several significant solution enhancements related to data management and big data.  These announcements reflect IBM’s commitment to leading the next generation of data solutions through improved functionality in their core database and data warehouse solutions, as well as expanding the capabilities of their solutions built to exploit big data, BigInsights and InfoSphere Streams.  For DB2 database customers IBM announced BLU Acceleration, delivering 8 to 25 times faster reporting and analytics on DB2, along with significant compression and space savings.  For customers considering IBM’s Big Data solutions, IBM announced BigSQL, its ANSI SQL interface that makes BigInsights analysis accessible to business users, not just data scientists.    And for organizations looking to simplify administration, a new appliance, the IBM PureData System for Hadoop was announced.

Join us Thursday, May 9th from 11am-12pm Eastern for an overview of the announcement and learn how your organization can benefit from IBM’s continued investment in data management.  Register here.

Presenter:
Warren Heising, Certified Consulting IT Specialist IBM
Warren is a Certified Consulting IT Specialist for IBM working in the Mid-Atlantic region.  He has over 25 years experience in the database field including 9 years at Informix prior to the IBM acquisition. He has a strong background in both OLTP and DSS Informix products and has worked with numerous clients in both Commercial and Federal accounts. Currently, he supports the full family of IBM Informix products along with DB2 and big data products for the Mid-Atlantic region and is actively involved in Proof of Technology and Proof of Concept scheduling and delivery.

IBM Data Strategy 2013: #BigData #BLU and much, much more…

Posted by Frank Fillmore on April 16, 2013 under Big Data, BigInsights, BLU Acceleration, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Migrations, Hadoop, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Mid Market Customers, IBM Pure Systems, IBM Smart Analytics System, IDAA, InfoSphere Streams, Netezza, Optim, Oracle, pureScale, Q-Replication. Tags: , , , .

Thank you to all of the customers, colleagues, and IBMers who joined The Fillmore Group on April 11, 2013 at Cinghiale in Baltimore, USA to discuss IBM’s Data Strategy – which we call “DB2 101”.  As it happens, many DB2 customers don’t realize the strength and depth of the IBM Information Management portfolio.  And many non-DB2 customers don’t know about the governance and management tooling available in InfoSphere and Optim (e.g. Guardium) which IBM provides for Oracle, SQL Server, Teradata, and other-vendor database servers.

Prominently featured were the highlights of IBM’s April 3rd announcement held at Almaden Lab which my colleague, Kim May, and I attended.

Also of note is the bundling of functionality in DB2 Advanced Enterprise Server Edition (AESE).

  1. pureScale – shared-disk clustering
  2. Data Partitioning Feature (DPF) – shared-nothing hash partitioning
  3. DB2 for LUW v10.5 columnar compression database

The presentation is available at DB2 101 – IBM Information Management Software Portfolio Overview 2013-04  The audio-video recorded delivery can be viewed here.

Assessing the Impact of #BigData IBMdatamag.com

Posted by Kim May on April 9, 2013 under Authorized Training Partner, Big Data, BigInsights, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, Hadoop, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, InfoSphere Streams. Tags: , .

A couple months ago I was the lucky winner of an IBM contest for Information Management Business Partners.  The prize was space in the IBM Data Management magazine (now online at www.ibmdatamag.com) and assistance writing an article on a topic of interest.  The article is being published today and can be viewed here.

As The Fillmore Group was recently asked to begin delivering IBM Authorized Education on IBM’s big data solutions, BigInsights and InfoSphere Streams, we decided to leverage the article to promote our upcoming classes.

There is always terrific content in the magazine.  I hope you enjoy the article and consider taking a formal class to learn more about IBM’s big data solutions.