Thursday, June 23, 2011

They shoot mainframes, don't they ?

Until now I haven't been referring much to 'The Register', the site with the subtitle 'Biting the hand that feeds IT'. Yout can't follow them all of course and perhaps I'm just not associating The Register with mainframe. But I want to look at the bright side of this : surely, it's because the mainframe is making its comeback, or should I say, is completely back, that also The Register is giving it more attention than before. As I wrote already quite some time ago : it's when you see the mainframe re-appearing in the less- or non-specialised press that we would know that we're really getting somewhere. Out of our little circle of mainframe adepts. Well, this time has come now. Isn't that great ? Isn't that some serious peptalk ?

So, what's it about : it's about The Registers article : 'They shoot mainframes, don't they ?' with as subtitle : 'Rethinking big iron for the data centre'. Starting point is that many people have still very oldfashioned ideas about the mainframe adhering to the two and two myth : it takes you two years to move applications to the mainframe and it costs you at least $2 million. The white paper The Register presents here takes a closer look at some of those myths and misunderstandigs about the mainframe and contradicts them. I'll give you a couple of quotes to give you an idea :
"(...) objections to the mainframe are firmly rooted in what the platform was, not what it is. That does not necessarily make it the best platform for everyone’s needs, but it does alter the criteria by which it is accepted or rejected".
"(...) the mainframe can answer the problems today that the expansion of traditional data centres and the adoption of the cloud are still struggling to solve".
"Data analysis is an example of an existing application which migrated to the client-server environment, but with limited success: by moving the data to the processing, it has often created multiple versions of the truth, because of the variable age of the data under test. Keeping the processing close to core data can improve analysis".
"(...) reconsidering the mainframe has to be an effort led from the top of the business, and sponsored by it. It requires open minds and a willingness to work outside silos and fiefdoms. Departmental protectionism must be acknowledged, and the project leader must have the authority to overcome it if the opportunity is not to be lost".
You can download the white paper over here. Oh, and I know you keen mainframers have a sharp view and will immediately notice it indicates 'By IBM' as the author, but I still think the paper is worth your time, it's well written and you have to admit it, the quotes I just gave you can surely start a lively discussion about the role of the mainframe in your company.

1 comment:

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