In the first week of March (2015), SHARE in Seattle gathered more than 1,000 enterprise IT professionals to learn about the future of mainframe innovation, the mobile generation and information security. Leading these topics were keynotes Ross A. Mauri, general manager for IBM z Systems, and Philip Young, the “Solider of FORTRAN” and the user group’s youngest keynote speaker to date. In addition, SHARE announced its 2015 President’s Award winner as well as the New to z Systems educational program, set to debut in conjunction with SHARE in Orlando, Aug. 9-14, 2015.
SHARE President James Vincent kicked off the event by awarding Karla Houser, program manager of SHARE’s Enterprise Data Center team and senior technology specialist at Caterpillar Inc., the 2015 President’s Award for her outstanding service as a SHARE volunteer.
“Karla’s commitment to SHARE, to her fellow volunteers and to our mission never wavers — not even a flood or tornado can keep this ‘Enterprise Data Center dynamo’ from SHARE for long,” Vincent said.
During his keynote address, “The New Generation Mainframe is Here,” Mauri identified the power of the mobile generation and Internet of Things as the two major driving factors in the design of the z13 mainframe. After moving from 1 to 37 mobile transactions per day in just 10 years, the effect of mobile on the enterprise IT industry is just beginning.
“Mobile is changing the way we live and changing the way IT systems need to be built,” Mauri explained. “Our studies show that in the next two years the average will reach 50 transactions per user per day, and over the next four years it is headed to reach 100.”
The growing mobile generation and current state of digital business creates a need for enterprise IT professionals to further the education opportunities available to z Systems users. To address this, SHARE announced a brand-new New to z Systems educational program. The program is open to those looking to develop basic z Systems skills in order to be more effective in a new or existing job role.
“SHARE’s New to z Systems program will provide educational content for IT professionals new to the z Systems platform architecture and features,” noted Vincent. “Participants will also have the opportunity to converse with experienced z Systems technicians and learn how to navigate z Systems interfaces, such as 3270, without needing outside assistance.”
SHARE in Seattle attendees also learned about real-life security breaches and ways to bridge the divide between the mainframe and security worlds during Philip Young’s, “The Security Gap.” Young discussed how the enterprise should work with the hacker community in order to uncover security flaws in systems and amend those vulnerabilities.
“‘Hacker’ isn’t a bad word. Most hackers are like you or I with jobs at large corporations, and their jobs are to defend the system. What better way to defend the system than attacking it like an attacker would?” Young explained. Currently, this approach is done through system vulnerability audits, testing and contests. During such contests, enterprises reward world-class hackers who can successfully breach their systems and, in turn, identify the weak points of its defenses, giving hackers a creative outlet to flex their skills.
SHARE believes that it is truly an exciting time for the mainframe and, in its 60th year of service, looks forward to providing today’s IT professionals with the necessary tools to continue their success through furthered education. The next SHARE educational event, SHARE in Orlando, is scheduled for Aug. 9-14, 2015 at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. Parties interested in attending the event, including the New to z Systems program, should visit www.SHARE.org/Orlando for more information.
About SHARE Inc.
SHARE® is an independent, volunteer-run information technology association that provides education, professional networking and industry influence. Since 1955, SHARE has enabled IT professionals to achieve business results through a combination of credible, relevant programs and peer opportunities.