The first Master the Mainframe World Champion was crowned this week in New York. The competition was won by Yong-Siang Shih from National Taiwan University. Rijnard van Tonder of South Africa was second, after leading the competition into the final week. Coming in third was United Kingdom's Philipp Egli.
Starting back on March 10, this elite group of students worked remotely, receiving training from qualified zEnterprise instructors. Competitors sharpened their enterprise computing skills, learned about advanced development tools, and how the platform supports Cloud, Big Data & Analytics, Mobile and Security initiatives. Using that knowledge, the competitors were be tasked to build a business application on the mainframe.
Here are the top 6 places with their points. The complete standings at the end of the event.
Currently (March 31st), the leader is Rijnard van Tonder, from South Africa. He has 1,257 points, but hot on his heels is Shahini Sengupta from India, she is only 54 points behind.
The mainframe will be 50 years young soon and IBM is looking forward to growing possibilities and opportunities. Written off many times, the mainframe continues to be not only the bedrock of large enterprise critical systems, but is opening up new capabilities for a wider group of businesses, designed to handle today’s complex Big Data, Cloud, Security and Mobile computing workloads.
The African continent accounts for 14 percent of the world's population and is one of the fastest growing economies in the world. With a growth rate expected to average 7 percent annually over the next 20 years, Africa is poised to become a leading source of innovation in a variety of industries. To further enhance the scientific and technology base on the African continent, IBM Research has opened a new lab in Nairobi, Kenya.
Building on decades of technology leadership in enterprise computing, IBM today unveiled its new zEnterprise BC12 (zBC12) mainframe designed for the latest in analytics, cloud and mobile computing. With a starting price of USD $75,000, the zBC12 makes the most secure and technologically advanced enterprise server attractive to organizations of all sizes.
Wikibon reports on IBM Edge and in particular the talk given by new General Manager for System Storage & Networking, Ambuj Goyal at Edge. Goyal's keynote emphasized flash, OpenStack and open standards - encouraging business to focus on storage as a way to derive value from data and information rather than being an archive or repository.
Intersect360 Research CEO Addison Snell talks to HPCwire Editor Nicole Hemsoth about hot topics in HPC in their weekly podcast. This week it includes a review of a recent IBM Technical Computing (HPC) conference, which covers IBM's strategic direction when it comes to technical computing, beyond traditional supercomputers.
Based on our quarterly analyst update teleconference on April 25, ITCandor analyst Martin Hingley published a positive commentary on System z marketplace momentum, new offerings and new client Algar Telecom, who consolidated 80 servers to Linux virtual servers running on a single zEnterprise System with zBX.
"Our view is that System z is doing well due to the importance of product introductions, with the zEC12 boosting sales significantly over the last 2 quarters."
"System z demonstrates a status all large integrated ‘systems of record’ should aim for. IBM has successfully removed many objections to System z – that the processors are more expensive, the entry price too high, are only used in banks, are never sold to new customers and always run proprietary z/OS workloads."
"Algar has discovered a number of benefits from the project, including:
Reducing the total cost of ownership and for the next 3 years
A reduction in Capital Expenditure
Increased availability, mitigating the need to stop the high-end production server
Greater flexibility – it can use the environment for Cloud computing at a later stage
Better time-to-market – the virtualised environment with Capacity on Demand provides for faster and easier deployment of new applications
Better technology with the latest generation z196 and POWER7 servers
The project achieved the consolidation aim of replacing 80 physical servers with a single server."
IBM announced the following senior executive appointments:
Rod Adkins has been named senior vice president, Corporate Strategy, reporting to Ginni Rometty, IBM Chairman, President and CEO.
Tom Rosamilia has been named leader of Systems and Technology Group, reporting to Steve Mills, senior vice president and group executive, Software & Systems.
"Tom and Rod are both ideally suited for these roles," said Ginni. "Rod will play a key part in shaping our long-term enterprise strategy of continuous transformation, based on our strategic beliefs about the new computing model, new markets and clients, and the evolution of our own company. He brings a wealth of leadership experience and insight in both business and technology."
"Tom, in turn, has a rich background in all aspects of systems, from Power and mainframe to WebSphere," Ginni said. "He will help the STG team further accelerate its transformation in pursuit of high-value opportunities."
Chief Analysts, Dave Vellante, Wikibon, interview IBM's Global Storage Efficiency Evangelist after the #FlashAhead event last week where IBM announced the introduction of 12 global flash centers of competency.
Last week IBM announced that it will invest $1 billion over three years in research and development in flash storage. It will also open 12 Centers of Competency around the world. There are new products too under the FlashSystems banner.
Last week IBM held SpreeCast with a number of journalists, an analyst and one of our clients GHY International who shared their experience of IBM Power Systems.GHY International, has 110-employees and is a provider of Canadian and U.S. customs brokerage services and international trade solutions: IBM Power Systems help reduce IT management, which in turn lets CIO Nigel Fortlage and GHY focus on the business.
The call was hosted by Doug Brown, vice president of marketing for Power Systems and Smarter Computing.
You can read a full review on the event on Power ITPro.
"In Q4 2012 IBM System z reported a 56% growth in revenues – the highest absolute dollar amount since before 2000 and 66% in MIPS – the most absolute number of MIPS shipped in history for this measurement of shipped processing power."
"IBM has signed more than 180 new accounts since the introduction of the zEnterprise in Q3 2010, with 71 added in 2012; since mid-2011 half of these were ‘first in enterprise’ purchases – the remainder split between those who bought for the first time in 10 years and those expanding their mainframe use to a new geography ... In addition to the accelerated adoption of zEnterprise for Linux consolidation, over a third of the ‘first in enterprise’ clients are running z/OS."
"Over time it seems likely that the almost religious objection by non-IBM vendors and customers to the mainframe will subside – we’re moving to a time when workloads, rather than underlying platform will drive investment."
Here StormInsights analyst, Adrian Bowles talks to the new CTO of Watson, Rob HIgh. The sound on Rob's end is a little bit deep but it is a good listen - especially if you want to dig into the technical side.
STORM Insights founder and analyst, Adrian Bowles, shares his views on why Watson is important to him. Adrian explains the difference between a machine that uses pure processing power and one like Watson that can... well, I'll let Adrian explain. :o)
Jim Kelly, analyst with Wikibon gave this analysis of this weeks updates to siliconAngle tv.
“It does require a lot of expertise, and it costs money and time and
effort. IBM realized that here’s an opportunity for SMBs that haven’t
been able to get involved in big data…to allow them to deploy big data
and start using it, at least in a modified fashion, at a price point
that is feasible for small businesses."
On January 23, 2013 at 1:00 pm Eastern time (6 pm UK time), Redmonk analyst James Governor will lead an expert panel of guests to discuss the importance of apps, ecosystems, and end user experience in today’s IT world.
Join us on Google+ hangout or on the Youtube channel to watch live. Event Invite
Use the #IBMPureChat hashtag to ask questions on Twitter.
We've put together a pictorial look back at 2012 which was a big and busy year for IBM's systems and technology group. We launched our new integrated systems platform, PureSystems and the latest edition of the mainframe zEnterprise EC12. Of course there was loads of stuff between those two events which you can look back on over on our board.
Something we have all felt for some time is that skills, or lack of, are a major issue for employees and employers. Many positions are going unfilled which means people are missing out on employment or simply underemployed.
Lots has been written about IBM Watson and it's successful TV debut but the real life solutions are becoming a reality too. The IBM Watson Solutions Lab is where these new ideas are being developed and demonstrated.
IBM Research, in collaboration with DARPA's Systems of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable Electronics (SyNAPSE)
program, has reached another brain simulation milestone. Powered by its
new TrueNorth system on the world's second fastest supercomputer, IBM
was capable of crafting a 2.084 billion neurosynaptic cores and 100
trillion synapses -- all at a speed "only" 1,542 times slower than real
life. The abstract explains that this isn't a biologically realistic
simulation of the human brain, but rather mathematically abstracted --
and little more dour -- versions steered towards maximizing function and
minimizing cost. DARPA's SyNAPSE project aims to tie together
supercomputing, neuroscience and neurotech for a future cognitive
computing architecture far beyond what's running behind your PC screen
at the moment.
Gartner held their annual Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Orlando, Florida during October. There they talked about the top 10 strategic technology trends for 2013. Some of these will be very familiar to IBMers as they are areas we have been working in for quite some time as you will see from the links below.
What stands out are three main themes, mobile, cloud and data. Mobile and cloud could be said to be two sides of the same coin, with data being the edge that wraps around and connects them together. The final point about integrated ecosystems just demonstrates how technology is being more closely linked together. The idea has always been there but perhaps the means are only now being seen.
Here is the top ten with just a small selection of examples from IBM I've added in:
Mobile Device Battles Gartner
predicts that by 2013 mobile phones will overtake PCs as the most common
Web access device worldwide. (IBM Mobile strategy)
Actionable Analytics Analytics
is increasingly delivered to users at the point of action and in
context - more
decision flexibility at the time and place of every business process
action. (IBM Bets Big on Analytics)
In Memory Computing Millions of events can
be scanned in a matter of a few tens of millisecond to detect
correlations and patterns pointing at emerging opportunities and threats
"as things happen." (Is all in-memory the best for Analytics?)
Integrated Ecosystems The market is undergoing a shift to more integrated systems and
ecosystems and away from loosely coupled heterogeneous approaches. Driving this
trend is the user desire for lower cost, simplicity, and more assured
security. Driving the trend for vendors the ability to have more control
of the solution stack and obtain greater margin in the sale as well as
offer a complete solution stack in a controlled environment, but without
the need to provide any actual hardware.
IBM announced a bunch of new features to it's PureFlex systems today. Here Jeff Howard and Alex Yost take you through these updates including new mobile, management and storage components for its PureFlex
and Flex System portfolios. Key among these components is a new storage
system to help improve storage utilization as much as 30 percent while
delivering extraordinary ease of use.
Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2012/11/12/4980855/new-storage-and-management-features.html#storylink=cpy
Things kicked off properly today after a welcome reception last night with one-on-ones this morning followed by deep dive sessions on cloud, data and security.
After lunch Rod Adkins, Senior VP and Amuj Goyal, GM, Research & Manufacturing hosted the general sessions. We've captured some of the reaction to events today in our storify but you can get all the tweets on #IBMes12 from today and coming up tomorrow morning.
On a personal note I got to meet up again with Frank De Gilio (IBM Dist. Eng.), Adrian Bowles (STORM) and fellow Brit, Gary Barnett (Bathwick Group).
The number of large organizations in the U.S. is dwarfed by the millions
of SMBs – the true drivers of the economy. According to the U.S. Census
Bureau’s 2010 Statistics of U.S. Businesses,
17,236 firms in the country have more than 500 employees, while 5.7
million firms have less than 500. The challenges this silent majority
face managing the data deluge can be far more acute than those of
larger, well-resourced enterprises.
At IBM, we are now offering a storage system, IBM Storwize V3700, that’s designed to help the SMB get a foothold on Big Data. The easy to use and easy to manage Storwize V3700
can store up to 180TB of raw digital information on 120 hard drives, or
again, about all the content within the U.S. Library of Congress…times
18. Furthermore, its flexible architecture lets SMBs connect it to their
existing storage systems. Once connected, customers can virtualize
those systems and then migrate all of their data, including
applications, files, etc., to the Storwize V3700 entirely, with no
disruption to users and a minimum amount of downtime.
This week IBM STG Analyst Relations is holding its annual Executive Summit for global analysts. As these things are planned many months in advance we chose the city of Greenwich, Connecticut. The area was hit by Sandy but things in the area are getting back to normal and the event is going ahead as planned.
This year we've changed things a little with more focus on smaller groups, round-tables and one-to-ones. There are still two general sessions with Rod Adkins, Steve Mills and Ambuj Goyal. Ambuj will be talking about IBM's point of view on the evolution of the data center. Ambuj was recently in London for another of our events where he spoke about the changing world of IT.
As we mentioned last week Ambuj Goyal, GM, Development & Manufacturing gave his keynote at a meeting of IT analysts and influencers at Pennyhill Park Hotel in England.
Part of the talk was given over to the new products that were announced that day, namely PureData and POWER7+.
A summary of the whole day, along with the video recording of the keynote by Ambuj can is embedded below. There is also the brief transcript of a tweetchat with Ambuj directly after his talk and just before he had to fly off to one of IBM's labs.
Join us for this event next week on Livestream where Ambuj Goyal, GM, Development & Manufacturing will be giving a keynote around some of the announcements that were made this week. This will be followed with a short tweetchat. Full details below.
This week, if you didn't notice, IBM launched a whole host of systems, servers, storage and chips that help business deal with the issues and opportunities that all businesses face in a mobile, interconnected, fast-moving world. A world in which data is can swamp or save an enterprise.
You've heard the numbers before about data growth and they are also in the infographic you can find below in the storiffy of the main points from this weeks events. The highlight of this weeks many events was held at Pinehurst (#IBMPinehurst) Executive Summit.
Join us for a Livestream & tweetchat with Ambuj and IBM on Oct 9th.
The event will see Ambuj Goyal, General Manager, Development and Manufacturing, IBM Systems & Technology, present a keynote
the changing challenges facing clients are having a dramatic impact on
their requirements for the underlying IT servers, storage and networking
infrastructure, that IBM refers to as Smarter Computing. Hear how for
some clients this can foster innovation & transformation, but for
others, it can mean quite simply survival.
The audience at Pennyhill, Bagshot, England, will include senior industry analysts and bloggers.
There is also an opportunity to submit questions for the tweetchat with Ambuj.
IBM redefines social business with
analytics IBM Connections incorporates sophisticated
real-time data monitoring, and faster
collaborative networks both
inside and outside the organization.
Primerica selects IBM for social
business transformation Primerica is using IBM social business
software to transform the way
its sales representatives will engage
with their policy owners
and prospective new clients.
"The new model, the zEnterprise EC12, has strengthened the traditional
mainframe’s skill of reliably and securely handling vast volumes of
transactions. That is why the mainframe is still the digital workhorse
for banking and telecommunications networks — and why mainframes are
selling briskly in the emerging economies of Asia and Africa."
This week, IBM launched its new System z mainframe, the IBM zEnterprise EC12. This is the second-generation in our hybrid enterprise-class systems, building on the success of the zEnterprise 196.
We believe that to succeed in the new era of computing, our clients must find a better way to store, process and analyze their growing volumes of critical data. Since its launch in 2010, over 140 new clients in both major markets and growth markets have trusted zEnterprise to handle their mission-critical workloads. With an IBM R&D investment of over $1B and the collaboration of more than 2,500 IBM development engineers across 17 labs worldwide, the zEC12 is designed to deliver even greater levels of client value by providing:
Efficiency at scale. With 25% more performance per core and 50% more capacity than its predecessor, the zEC12 delivers superior economics through large-scale workload consolidation. The zEC12 is optimized for private clouds and delivers even more data center efficiency by integrating System z with Power Systems and System x blades under one unified management system.
Operational analytics. The zEC12 helps clients build intelligence into their business transactions by combining real-time and historical data using technology like the DB2 Analytics Accelerator. This improved insight allows clients to expand the value of each transaction with their customers.
Ultimate security. The zEC12 has enhanced security capabilities, such as near real-time workload monitoring and improved data encryption technologies, to address unique industry requirements and lower security administrative costs by up to 50%.
You can find more information about the zEC12 here. And read how a growing list of companies in emerging economies are relying on the IBM System z mainframe to build their infrastructures.
Earlier today, IBM announced plans to acquire privately held solid state storage developer Texas Memory Systems, of Houston, Texas.
The acquisition will buttress IBM's work in the solid state storage area, which provides dramatically faster data storage and access times over traditional disk and tape solutions. Solid state storage solutions are also more efficient and consume far less energy than traditional solutions. Over time, the plan is to integrate TMS technologies into IBM PureSystems offerings.
Stories about the acquisition plans have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, ZDNet and Forbes. George Crump, an analyst with Storage Switzerland, also published a blog, noting: "In what could be one of the
most important acquisitions of the year, IBM today announced plans to
acquire Texas Memory Systems... we think this is an excellent move on the part of IBM. Texas
Memory brings a deep technical bench and excellent leadership that will
allow IBM to differentiate itself from other large storage vendors." Crump also noted: "...this purchase significantly strengthens IBM’s SSD Strategy. As the
Texas Memory products are integrated into the IBM portfolio it puts IBM
on par, if not ahead of EMC for completeness of flash offering."
In short, the problems started with a lack of investment in maintenance of it's systems, then they applied software that would only work if the system had been updated correctly.
James also goes on to say why the systems that support a business day after day doing the "boring stuff" get ignored - buying new stuff is much more interesting and possibly career changing for those that implement it successfully. Neither is bad but a balance needs to be reached.
"Mainframe shops that invest in getting current with operating systems
and software can run mainframes at lower cost than those that don’t.
Investing in legacy is, and can be, a competitive advantage."
The result of an international collaboration between 13 institutions from Australia, New Zealand, U.S. and India, the MWA
is a new type of radio telescope designed to capture low frequency
radio waves from deep space as well as the volatile atmospheric
conditions of the Sun. The signals will be captured by the telescope’s
4,096 dipole antennas positioned in the Australian Outback in a
continuous stream and processed by an IBM iDataPlex dx360 M3 computing
cluster that will convert the radio waves into wide-field images of the
sky that are unprecedented in clarity and detail.
Join our expert panel on Thursday, July 26 from 1:00-2:00 pm EDT (5-6pm GMT) for a TweetChat hosted by analyst Charles King, Pund-IT’s president and principal analyst. Loads more detail on the event over on the Expert Systems blog.
It’s easy to join the conversation using Twitter – simply follow and use the hashtag #ExpertSysChat on the day of the event to participate.
Think you'll forget? Get a reminder on our EventBrite page.
"After IBM purchased the company, we wondered how long it would take the
company to realize that if this software could be integrated into the
storage device itself and still achieve compression ratios in the 3:1
range, without performance impact, it would instantly give IBM an unfair
advantage in the marketplace."
This comes hot on the heels of our storage event Edge where we outlined Smarter Storage. So what is the future of Smarter Storage? Here is a little of what Taneja think.
"And wouldn't it be interesting if IBM found a way to integrate RTC into the N-Series, which is OEM'd from NetApp."
Great news for IBM supercomputers, not only taking the top position but also 3 out of the top ten and a total of 213 systems in the Top500.
Sequoia, an IBM supercomputer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California, was on June 18, 2012 named No. 1 on the TOP500, a list of the world’s fastest supercomputers. Sequoia — part of IBM’s BlueGene/Q line and based on the company’s POWER architecture — runs at more than 16 petaflops (or more than 16 quadrillion calculations a second). Lab and IBM Research leaders here mark a collaboration that has produced six of the most powerful supercomputers in the world over 14 years.
Compression of data on primary storage has taken center stage in
the storage wars now with IBM's release of Real-Time Compression on the Storewize V7000
and the SAN Volume Controller.
Although not the first product to offer data reduction in primary storage, IBM raised
the bar by doing compression inline (real-time) and without
performance impact. Other solutions in the open systems storage
area primarily compress data and sometimes dedupe it as a
post-processing task after the data has been written.
A few weeks ago IBM announced it was bringing the
System z to its SmartCloud Enterprise offerings. This
raises a few questions, for starters: what took IBM so long? You
could argue that the mainframe, as the original time-shared system,
has been doing an early form of cloud computing for decades. More
recently, mainframes have been available as hosted services at the
company's data centers.
Summary: Headlines scream the
mainframe is dead, the midrange system is dead or the PC is dead.
The data center reality, however, is that useful technology doesn't
die. It just becomes the foundation for the next wave of technology
I thought about this post a lot during the two hour slog home from
Orlando, the site of IBM Edge 2012, and my offices in Tampa Bay on
Thursday night. Rain and drizzle made progress on I-4 even
slower than usual, so I had some time to consider what I found most
compelling about the show.
IBM just had its IBMEdge2012 conference in Orlando. It was
storage event with two tracks: 2 days called Executive Edge and 4
days called Technical Edge. The tag line was 'expect more from your
storage'. The format will be familiar to IT professionals attending
multi-day events ending in the word -world: plenary
presentations, technical breakouts, showcase expo for partner
sponsors, hospitality and entertainment. Good events attempt to
minimise the hype and get down to educate the attendees and
IBM is a massive and global services, software, and infrastructure
business that, until the last 5 years or so, has been primarily
focusing on the former two components. More recently on the storage
side, however, IBM purchased XIV and Storwize (for compression),
and developed the Storwize V7000 and SAN Volume Controller (SVC)
organically through internal efforts. However, all three lines of
business (XIV, Storwize V7000, and SVC) have largely been operating
independently. Combine this with the DS series and N-series
products and, why not, SONAS, and you've got a powerhouse
portfolio. That said, give three different resellers the same
specifications and you will likely get three different solutions
back from the RFP.
In the Conversations with Innovators series, James Governor and Stephen O'Grady co-founders of disruptive (my word) analyst firm, Redmonk share their perspectives of the Social Business industry.
But what I really liked about this starts at 7:00 when Lennie asks if there is a temptation for people to pave the cow path, in that we try to apply technology to business processes that are broken. James replies with, "What's wrong with cow paths. Those cows have probably found a good way to get across the field." In other words, people often find the best way to work, regardless of the actual process the business has tried to implement. "What developers should do [...] is look at how people actually want to work."
In case you managed to miss it, yesterday IBM launched a new breed of system, PureSystems, with built-in expertise.
Two events were held yesterday in New York, one for industry analysts and another for press and clients. I captured the main points from both on Storify with the press event being mostly made up of some really nice images provide by attendees that were posted on Twitter.
The chats kick off with "Why is simplicity in IT such a hard thing to achieve?" and you can follow it all on twitter using #expertsyschat.
Watson collaborates with cancer center
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and IBM will collaborate on a powerful tool built upon IBM Watson to provide medical professionals with improved access to current and comprehensive cancer data and practices. ComputerWorld carries more on the story.
Talking of data centers, research with IDC has shown that only 21% of 300 companies surveyed are running data centers at their highest efficiency. Here is an IDC paper on how business can improve the efficiencies of it's data centers.
Today we will be talking with analysts about the latest and greatest updates from System z GDPS. What is GDPS I hear you ask. GDPS helps automate recovery procedures for planned and unplanned
outages to provide near-continuous availability and disaster recovery
capability. All good stuff I'm sure you will agree.
So later today one of our Distinguished Engineers, David Petersen, will be talking about the new capabilities introduced in GDPS 3.9 (around 20) along with some client success stories.
If you are interested in business recovery and resilience then follow #gdps on twitter to see what people are saying and weigh in with your views.
WHAT: Each year, IBM delivers a new release of its GDPS set of disaster recovery and continuous availability solutions. This year, GDPS 3.9 provides more than 20 enhancements across the family of offerings, including synergy items with IBM disk and tape, extensions to functions for z/VM and Linux on System z, items addressing specific client requirements, and general reliability/availability/serviceability improvements.
David Petersen will review GDPS 3.9 and how it will benefit System z clients.
HOST: David Petersen, Distinguished Engineer and GDPS Chief Architect, IBM Systems and Technology Group
WHEN: Thursday, March 15, 2012 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. EDT 15:00 - 16:00 UK 16:00 - 17:00 CET
There is an easy answer to that, which you will see in the reply by Adam Jollins, IBM offers multi-tenancy through offerings such as SmartCloud Enterprise, which is built on KVM.
Also Dutch Cloud BV offers this to their clients of cloud services, through IBM SmartCloud Provisioning software.The fully virtualized infrastructure is based on IBM System x3650 M3 servers connected to multiple IBM Storwize® V7000 disk systems. Kernel-based virtual machine (KVM) and VMware virtualization technology are used to enable clients to run multiple virtual machines on Linux or Windows images.
Working with IBM, Dutch Cloud (@DutchCloud) designed an environment that separates customers on the network level versus the service layer—known as virtual local area network (VLAN) separation. This approach makes multitenant isolation at the network and presentation layer possible, helping to ensure that each client environment runs securely and in isolation. It’s an important capability that helps Dutch Cloud differentiate itself in the marketplace.
Martijn Van Zoeren, CEO of Dutch Cloud BV said, “KVM is close to both the kernel and the hardware so we can optimize performance and work with cutting-edge hardware,” says Van Zoeren. “Open standards are also very important to us, so being able to support both KVM and VMware hypervisors with IBM SmartCloud Provisioning software enables us to offer choice to our customers.”
IBM scientists will report on a prototype optical chipset that is the first parallel optical transceiver to transfer one terabit of information per second, the equivalent of downloading 500 high definition movies. It looks nice too. This is what Wired said.