Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Another Mainframe Convert

By Brenda J Christie

What this article lacks in passion for the MAINFRAME it makes up for in a succinct analysis of its evolution and use.  It also emphasis the role IBM has played in being a business partner to the enterprise, which it attributes to IBM's longevity.

Read it at Zdnet.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

The True Cost of Bad Leadership

by Brenda J. Christie

In an article entitled, "Why Good Managers Are So Rare," the Harvard Business Review wrote, what I would consider, a rather stinging assessment of the cost to business of hiring a manager without the requite talents.  It estimates the cost to be in the billions of dollars and a trend which is experienced on a global scale.  I like the fact that the short-coming is assessed in billions of dollars as talk of money, especially of this magnitude, tends to catch people's attention.

The article describes the 5 talents inherent in good managers, and goes further to say these talents are innate, i.e., that education and coaching cannot necessarily bridge the gap.  However, it does say that 1 in 10 people possess these talents and that they are usually close by.

A fascinating article, I find its only shortcoming is that it does not call upon shareholders to take a more active role in demanding that companies maximize their ROI by ensuring leadership possesses these talents.

Click here to read the full HBR article.

Brenda J. Christie

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Mainframe Memories

by Brenda J. Christie

As the mainframe turns 50, Enterprise Systems magazine has taken the opportunity to look at the mainframe in its exception and sometimes from the perspective of people who were there, on the cusp of something great.

An especially endearing article written by Neale Ferguson, chronicles his accidental introduction to the mainframe,  and how it captured his heart and passion for the next 18 years.  Written from a system programmer's perspective, it nonetheless, succinctly describes the challenges and opportunities of piloting uncharted territory.

Having spent my early days working with punch cards, Wylbur, Rosco and 370/3090 Series machines,  I could put myself in the machine room or on the phone with the datacenters re-running jobs using CA-11 or participating in Disaster Recovery tests, or even asking the tape library to mount 6270 reels called for in jobs.

I really enjoyed this article.  It really brought back the sense of camaraderie and dedication so prevalent in the field.

Read it at Enterprise Systems.  You may have to subscribe to the magazine (it's free), but it is well worth the few minutes to fill out the few questions.


Brenda J. Christie

Thursday, February 27, 2014

The New Mainframe Beast

More on the evolution and transformation of that ancient dinosaur, the Mainframe.  Read it here.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Things Mentally Strong People Avoid

by Brenda J. Christie

Came across an interesting Forbes Magazine article recently.  A lot of it is common sense but it is good to see it on paper, and also serves as a reinforcement from time to time.

The article, written by Amy Morin, makes a lot of comparisons to sports figures, but I believe it has its applicability in the business arena as well as in life in general.  Read it here.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Screen Capture Apps for Windows

by Brenda J. Christie

Tech Republic recently published an article on Screen Capture Tools.  They range in price from FREE (Tiny Take and Jing)  to $49.

I've used one of the apps in their list, Snagit, and it is a great, quality, easy to use tool, but costs $49.  I'll try Jing and Tiny Take  next.

Read the complete article here on TechRepublic.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Evolution of Computing -- Has Anything Really Changed?

By Brenda J. Christie

Read an interesting TechRepublic article about the evolution of computing from the mainframe era (Yeah!) to the Cloud to Big Data.

Probably more interesting, however, are the comments left regarding the article, many of which attest to mainframe strengths which contribute to its resilience and staying power, mainly (1) security (2) governance, compliance.

Well worth the read...