Monday, March 15, 2010

Spring has sprung!

So it’s another Spring with lots of changes. Many exciting things going on with Zend, IBM i and the industry as a whole. As I run around I get to talk to lots of folks. I figured I’d share what I have been hearing and a little of what I’ve seen. Last week I presented six sessions for the SystemiNetwork iEssentials Virtual Conference. I wasn’t sure how this event would work. With virtual booths, virtual speakers and virtual refreshments it really was a huge success. Over 1,400 people registered and attended the two day event that covered many topics intersecting in the IBM i space like Document Management, RPG, .Net and, of course, PHP! The recordings and session materials are now available for those who could not attend. What a great alternative to the live conference for shops that just cannot afford to make the trip to a big event. Even the networking room was packed with folks talking about all kinds of stuff!

As I write this I am preparing for the annual WMCPA conference in Delavan Wisconsin. This group of volunteers always puts on a good show with lots of value for the attendees. There will be no less of that for this year’s event as it starts with an optional full day TCP/IP event led by Larry Bolhuis. I especially look forward to the Tuesday evening panel discussion with such IBM i luminaries like Aaron Bartel, Trevor Perry, Alison Butterill and some guy from Chicago blathering on about PHP. With two days of sessions covering RPG, PHP, Java and Rational there is something for everyone.

Next week I get to head to the mid-Atlantic midrange group to show of PHP and Zend Server to the folks on the East coast. This event is a reschedule as a result of the lovely weather they endured last month. I am not hoping for a repeat, here!

The big event we are all awaiting is COMMON. With the 50th anniversary, IBM i 7.1 and a new PHP stack, what more could you be looking for? Well, how about some killer networking sessions where you can talk to nearly anyone and everyone in the IBM i space. From the “ask the experts” Power Down event to the final closing event and CUDS2 there are a boatload of opportunities to chat with people from around the country about Power systems and IBM i. I will be present about 6 sessions on PHP in additional to hanging out with the CAAC (COMMON Americas Advisory Council). Be sure to get your requirements in for the CAAC so IBM i can continue to evolve.

In a few more weeks I will be heading down to Chattanooga, Tennessee to meet with the folks at Tennessee Valley Midrange.his should be a great time to meet with some folks I have not had a chance to hook up with.And this area of the country is showing some serious IBM i street cred with customers and applications all over PHP and RPG.

The Springtime conference season is upon us! If you can’t get out to a big show then support your local user group as there are many more events coming soon or going on all the time. If you have not looked up your local user group in a while maybe it’s time to Google them and see what they are up to. You might just be surprised!!!

Get ready: Zend Server for IBM i is right around the corner. The bakers in R&D are cooking up a good batch and it’s starting smell like it’s about done!