TFG and Arrow Bring Back Training with a BANG! #ibmiod

Posted by Kim May on November 2, 2013 under Arrow ECS, Authorized Training Partner, BigInsights, BLU Acceleration, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, IBM Training Services Delivery Partner, InfoSphere, Q-Replication. Tags: , , , , .

To everyone joining us at IOD, I invite you to stop by Arrow ECS’s booth in the Expo, #1309, to pop a balloon and possibly win a valuable training class prize – or an iPad!  Arrow ECS is one of the four new IBM-selected Global Training Partners, and in addition to being The Fillmore Group’s software distributor, Arrow is the partner TFG has aligned with to continue to deliver IBM Authorized Information Management classes.

To qualify to win you must stop by the booth and pop a balloon.  Special prizes are in *some* balloons.  Good luck!  Let’s get IBM IM training restarted with a BANG!

TFG (Finally!) Offers Training Again

Posted by Kim May on October 8, 2013 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, IBM Training Services Delivery Partner, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , , .

This past summer IBM rolled out the Global Skills Initiative, essentially outsourcing all education marketing and delivery to four selected Global Training Partners.  IBM will continue to develop course curriculum, but everything else is now in the hands of the four Global Training Partners, or GTP’s.

The Fillmore Group has aligned with Global Training Partner Arrow ECS, our software distributor, and I am pleased to finally be able to announce that we are back in the training business.

There are still challenges.  Two of the biggest are the process of finding our classes on the IBM training site and actually registering for a class.  While I work through this process so I can update our website with accurate information, I am going to post our schedule in as many places as possible (right here for starters), and invite anyone in search of an IBM class to contact me if you need help.  Public classes, private classes, in the classroom or remote – please don’t hesitate to email me.  I want to help!

IBM Global Skills Initiative Update

Posted by Kim May on June 5, 2013 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 Education, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , .

I was pleased and a bit surprised at the feedback from the blog post and email we sent out about the end of the IBM Authorized Training Program.  I have been gathering information on what the new program means – to IBM customers, training partners and the many independent instructors IBM has worked with over the years – and thought I would post an update.

I apologize if I didn’t respond individually to anyone who contacted me with feedback (it was good to hear from so many people, but wow!)  Overall the response was quite reassuring, as I have often wondered why it seems IBM customers are so reluctant to invest in education and skills.  Maybe they aren’t!

Today, I understand IBM intends to select 3-5 global organizations to take over the management, marketing and delivery of public training classes.  The IBM announcement about the new program is on their website

These vendors will manage the selection of instructors, delivery locations (cities and classrooms), and develop their own class schedules.  I’ve spoken to several of the vendors being considered and they seem to have some specific ideas as to how things will work, although quite honestly, there were some significant differences in their expectations.

For those of you who are instructors, I have been told the Global Training Partners will be able to select instructors based on criteria they establish independent of IBM, within their organizations, which essentially negates the IBM instructor authorization process. 

For those of you concerned with the availability of classes in Q3 and Q4 of 2013, it looks like IBM is working with a few providers vying for the Global Training Provider slots (Arrow, Avnet, TUV Rheinland and Learnquest) to build out a skeleton schedule of classes to be delivered in North America in Q3.  Most will be held in NYC and Colorado.  These classes are listed on the IBM training site by location.

As for private classes, I understand IBM intends to continue to coordinate and deliver private classes for customers. 

I hope this helps keep everyone up to date with the changes.  I am anxious and hope The Fillmore Group is able to continue to deliver training to IBM customers.

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.

Frank’s IDUG Session on QCR – Thursday at 3:30pm

Posted by Kim May on April 29, 2013 under DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, DB2 Migrations, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, International DB2 Users Group (IDUG). Tags: , , .

Frank is attending IDUG in Orlando this week to present on one of our favorite new IBM Information Management solutions, Query Capture Replay (QCR).  If you are heading to Florida this week, please say hi to Frank and join him on Thursday, May 2nd, from 3:30pm – 4:30pm in Bonaire 7&8 for his session.  

“Don’t Guesstimate! Migration Testing with Query Capture Replay”

This presentation focuses on several migration use cases for IBM’s new InfoSphere Optim Query Capture and Replay tool, announced in 2012. Query Capture and Replay (QCR) enables users to capture database activity on a production database and run it to analyze and evaluate the performance when changes – to SQL, hardware, operating system software and even the underlying database – are completed. It’s a great new migration tool.

Big Data Forum in Virginia

Posted by Kim May on March 11, 2013 under Big Data, Frank Fillmore, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Pure Systems, Netezza, Optim, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , .

I had the pleasure of attending and participating as a Business Partner in the IBM Big Data and Governance Forum road show event in Reston, Virginia, last week.  Many of the attendees were from Federal government agencies – no surprise – and most of the attendees, at least in my opinion, seemed to be trying to satisfy their curiosity about  Big Data. 

The first session presenter was Tracey Mustacchio, the Director of Marketing for Big Data.  Tracey came to IBM from Vivisimo, one of the latest IBM Information Management acquisitions.  She started her session with a standard show of hands opening.  The amazing thing was, with about 100 people in the room, only THREE were actually using any Big Data solutions in their IT shops.  3%!!  That meant – with the simplistic way I do math –  the other 97% of the attendees were, like me, still trying to figure out how to apply this new technology.  And of course, overcome the skepticism that comes from hearing a solution referred to as a “game changer” a few too many times.

The information delivered was excellent, with the presenters using clear, understandable business use case examples to demonstrate the Big Data solutions at work.  I thought it was great. 

As a Business Partner The Fillmore Group raffled off the gorgeous, huge coffee table book, “The Human Side of Big Data”, by Rick Smolan and Jennifer Erwitt.  After reading a glowing review I bought the book about a month ago for myself, and while I am bit overwhelmed by the book’s size (did I mention it’s huge?) which made it impossible to stuff in my laptop bag like my Kindle, it is simply beautiful and the perfect way to get excited about the potential of Big Data.  Each article is short – maximum length 2 pages – and tells about how Big Data has changed the way people are doing something.  And yes IBM fans, page 208 features Jeff Jonas.  Because what book about Big Data could leave out Jeff Jonas and his fascinating life and experience developing the IBM Entity Analytics solutions.

The forum delivered lots of great ideas and use cases.  It’s time to start moving beyond the ideas.  We all need to figure out how to apply this amazing technology and reap the benefits!  The next step, recommended by IBM’s Crysta Anderson, is to attend the IBM Big Data announcement on April 30th:   http://ibm.co/BigDataEvent to hear more about how you can move from theory to practice with Big Data.

DB2 101 Luncheon at Cinghiale April 11th

Posted by Kim May on February 28, 2013 under Big Data, DB2 Education, DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, DB2 Migrations, Frank Fillmore, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Mid Market Customers, IBM Pure Systems, InfoSphere, Netezza, Optim, Oracle. Tags: , , , , , .

As volumes of data explode and organizations look for unique ways to leverage the quantities of data – often in real-time – it’s easy to become confused.  We can help – join us for lunch at Cinghiale for an overview of the data management products in the IBM portfolio and gain an understanding of today’s top solutions.

Frank Fillmore will deliver an overview of hot topics in IBM data management:  Big Data, Information Governance, and appliances, and explain how new solutions are changing database and warehousing technologies.  Gain an understanding of how IBM’s acquisitions and integrated solutions have them positioned as today’s thought leader in data management.

DB2101 at Cinghiale (the “Boar”), 822 Lancaster Street, Baltimore, MD, 21202
April 11, 2013, 11am – 1pm

To register, click here.  

Satisfy your appetite and your curiosity with a tasty Italian lunch at local favorites Tony Foreman and Cindy Wolf’s Cinghiale. Whether you already use IBM data products or are interested in learning what IBM has to offer, the presentation will provide a dose of nutritious food for thought.

I will send you a confirmation with directions to the award winning Cinghiale.  Valet parking will be provided.

Free Webinar: What Your IBM Competitive Sales Specialist Wants You To Know

Posted by Kim May on February 25, 2013 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, Big Data, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 Migrations, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Mid Market Customers, IBM Pure Systems, International DB2 Users Group (IDUG), Netezza, Optim, Oracle, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , , .

Join IBM DB2 Competitive Sales Specialist Bill Kincaid and me for The Mid-Atlantic Information Management Virtual Users Group webinar on February 28th.  The Mid-Atlantic Information Management Virtual Users Group is focused on delivering information and education to DB2 users in the Mid-Atlantic region.  Given the topic and the terrific speaker lined up, and since the session will be delivered via webinar, anyone interested in IBM database solutions is welcome to join us.
 
In the session current DB2 customers will learn how IBM has enhanced DB2 administrative tool functionality, added new features, and is offering new product bundles that deliver better value at a lower cost.  Customers considering DB2 will learn how IBM is providing better assessment tools and easier migration processes to simplify the transition to DB2. 
 
Is DB2 the best?  Is moving to DB2 a no-brainer?  Join us, ask questions, and learn more about today’s DB2. 
 
Date:  Thursday, February 28, 2013
Time:  11am – 12:00pm Eastern
Registration is required.  Please register here
 
Bill Kincaid
Bill Kincaid is the IBM DB2 Competitive Sales Specialist for the Mid-Atlantic Region.  Bill has worked for IBM, Microsoft and Oracle, as well as data virtualization solution developer xkoto.  Bill’s specialty is helping database users – customers currently using DB2 and customers considering migrating to DB2 – to fully understand the value of DB2.  Bill earned his BA at the University of North Carolina – Charlotte and his MBA from the University of Georgia.  He lives in Charlotte and works with IBM customers in the Eastern US.
 
I hope you will join us.

IBM Big Data, Integration and Governance Forum

Posted by Kim May on January 23, 2013 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, Big Data, DB2 Education, DB2 Gold Consultants, Frank Fillmore, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Mid Market Customers, IBM Pure Systems, InfoSphere, Netezza, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , .

The Fillmore Group – and a special guest to-be-announced soon, will be be participating in the IBM Big Data, Integration and Governance Forum at the Sheraton Hotel in Reston, VA on March 5th.  The forum begins at 8am with a complimentary breakfast and sessions end at 1:15pm, followed by lunch provided by IBM.   There is no charge to attend the forum.

Great speakers are lined up to explain how best to leverage innovative techniques and gain a rock-solid understanding of how to:

  • Enhance the quality, availability and integrity of your data
  • Gain real-time insight into performance
  • Optimize and improve critical decision making
  • Reduce data management cost and complexity issues
  • Enforce data quality standards and stewardship policies
  • Effectively manage regulatory compliance demands
  • Leverage support for master data management (MDM) programs

Read More…

First Half 2013 Classes Scheduled

Posted by Kim May on December 19, 2012 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 Connect, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, InfoSphere, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , .

The Fillmore Group has been delivering IBM Authorized Training classes in our Towson, Maryland classroom for the past several years and believe we offer some of the best DB2 training around – in a comfortable facility at an affordable travel location.  Our first half of 2013 schedule has recently been posted on the IBM website and a complete list of classes is available here.

In addition to the public, open enrollment classes we host on IBM’s behalf, we deliver an extended group of IBM classes directly to organizations as private classes.  The complete list of private classes available is attached here

If you or anyone on your team is looking to upgrade your DB2 skills in 2013 please let me know how I can assist.   Email me directly and I will help!