Articles & Content

Fillmore Group

The Fillmore Group was founded by IBM DB2 Gold Consultant Frank C. Fillmore, Jr.

Note: The content of this blog is the opinion and thoughts of the blogger and does not necessarily represent the opinions of IDUG.

 

 
Oracle Renewal Looming? Consider DB2! @IBMAnalyticsThanks to my colleague, Kim May, for another wonderful job leading customers and IBMers through the rewards and challenges of converting Oracle databases to DB2. The recording of the latest webinar is found here.  The presentation materials: Oracle Customers Consider DB2 5.16.17 Finally, The Fillmore Group’s White Paper on Oracle to DB2 migrations: SmarterQuestions White Paper -- Oracle to DB2 Migration Lessons Learned -- Final Please reach out to Kim or me if you have any questions.
IBM Announces Extended Support for DB2 for LUW V9.7 and 10.1I've been pondering what this announcement means all day...is IBM trying to become the most altruistic database software vendor?  They are offering amazing software license discounts to customers moving workloads from Oracle to DB2 for LUW, and today announced a new extended support option for customers unable to meet the September 30th End of Support (EOS) date for both DB2 V9.7 and V10.1.  Typically IBM pushes customers to migrate before the EOS date as it helps to keep the majority of customers being supported on a limited number of software versions.  As everyone supporting software knows, simpler is better. On the flipside though, I've been wondering if this announcement is a veiled advertisement for a new, for-fee offering from IBM to generate services income?  Yes, I can be as suspicious as anyone! If you find yourself in need of extended support and discover IBM is asking for a substantial fee and would like a second price option on support, please shoot me an email.  We've offered DB2 customers similar support in the past, and we've also completed several migrations from V9.7 and V10.1 to V11.1 and can help you get to V11.1 before September 30th if that's the best option of all. Information on the IBM announcement and contact for obtaining a quote for the extended support is HERE.   My contact info is HERE.  Your call!
Another Oracle Attack Webinar? You Bet!With IBM's announcement this week of super-aggressive discounting being offered to current Oracle customers considering a move to DB2, and with the deadline looming for many Oracle customers faced with another year of bloated "investment" in Oracle support, we've decided to deliver updated material on the benefits of moving to DB2. Our upcoming webinar, "Oracle Renewal Looming?  Consider DB2!" will be delivered on Tuesday, May 16th, from 11:30am to 12:30pm EDT. DB2 Gold Consultant Frank Fillmore will join me for the session, as will IBM's Tony Mancini, Worldwide Competitive Team Executive.  Tony will give us a brief overview of IBM's recent announcement, and Frank and I will deliver a fast-paced, interactive 60-minute session that will (we hope!) provide current Oracle customers with an understanding of both the cost savings and incredible database functionality available with DB2. Please register HERE to join us!
Calling All IDAA Users!The next IBM-sponsored DB2 Analytics Accelerator Users’ Group meeting was announced this week.  The Fillmore Group’s Frank Fillmore will be presenting one of the sessions, along with BNY/Mellon Pershing’s Al DiGiovanni, whose support and promotion of the IDAA enabled Pershing to acquire their first IDAA. Al and Frank will be presenting the meeting’s final session titled, “Increasing Utilization of the Accelerator by your Lines of Business”, a session whose topic has been a core issue for System z customers trying to persuade their colleagues to consider investing in the IDAA. As many technical teams promoting IDAA adoption have learned (the hard way!), most organizations adopted the circa-Y2K best practice of running OLTP and analytic workloads separately, and are therefore reluctant to re-integrate the two, in spite of the cost, latency and simplicity advantages.  This session is designed to surface the issue and discuss options to address and overcome it. Information on the DAAUG meeting is below.  Please be advised that membership in this group is limited to current IDAA customers and registration to attend is managed by IBM.  If you own an IDAA and would like to attend, and have not received an email invitation from IBM, please email me (kim.may@thefillmoregroup.com) and I will connect you to the IBM team coordinating the meeting. I hope you will join us May 9th. Session Details “Increasing Utilization of the Accelerator by your Lines of Business” Frank Fillmore and Al DiGiovanni, BNY/Mellon Pershing The IDAA is a powerful tool for performing real-time analytics on z/OS transactional data.  In many cases it is left to the managers of an enterprise’s mainframe to “sell” an IDAA to lines of business (LOBs). The audience for the sales pitch: CFOs, CTOs, Enterprise IT Architects, Data ScientistsThe objections: o existing infrastructure (ETL processes, enterprise data warehouses) o mainframe marginalization (“The mainframe is too expensive”; “The mainframe is not a strategic platform”)The advantages: o reduced complexity o reduced latency o cost savings (e.g. inexpensive data archiving of all System z data)New opportunities: o in-database transformation (i.e. AOTs for MicroStrategy) o in-database analytics (i.e. INZA-IDAA 3.2.2.1) o cloud deployment (Public/Private/Hybrid) o Machine Learning o R supportDB2 Analytics Accelerator Users’ Group (DAAUG) Meeting Date:           Tuesday, May 9, 2017 Location:     IBM Offices, NYC or via web conference Time:           9:30am – 2:00pm EDT During this meeting, Ute Baumbach, subject matter expert from the Analytics on z Systems Center of Excellence out of Boeblingen, Germany, will cover the most recently introduced Accelerator features, functions and fixes. Tim Willging, Distinguished Engineer, will discuss how you can expand your Accelerator use cases with new functionality in the Accelerator Loader Tool. Jonathan Sloan, Business Analytics Executive Consultant, will present ways the Accelerator complements IBM Machine Learning. Frank Fillmore, DB2 Gold Consultant of the Fillmore Group, and a customer presenter will share their successful experiences to help you promote the value of the Accelerator to your Lines of Business. We encourage you to join the meeting in person if you are local. Web Meeting details will be provided for remote attendees. Agenda: 09:30 – 10:00       Registration 10:00 – 10:15        Welcome 10:15 – 10:45         Developer's Update: DB2 Analytics Accelerator Features, Functions and Fixes 10:45 – 11:30         Expanding Accelerator use cases with new DB2 Analytics Accelerator Loader functionality 11:30 – 12:00         Lunch Break 12:00 – 01:00        Complementing IBM Machine Learning with the DB2 Analytics Accelerator 01:00 – 02:00       Increasing Utilization of the Accelerator by your Lines of Business
Oracle Renewal Looming? Consider DB2! @IBMAnalyticsThanks to Kim May for a fabulous job stepping customers and IBMers through the rewards and challenges of converting Oracle databases to DB2.  The recording of the webinar is found here.  The presentation materials: Oracle Customers Consider DB2 4.5.17 Finally, The Fillmore Group's White Paper on Oracle to DB2 migrations: SmarterQuestions White Paper -- Oracle to DB2 Migration Lessons Learned -- Final Please reach out to Kim or me if you have any questions.
Webinar: Oracle Renewal Looming? Consider DB2!The Fillmore Group is inviting organizations frustrated with rising Oracle costs to join us for a webinar focusing on the two primary motivations behind DB2 migrations: cost and functionality. Session attendees will perform a self-analysis to compare similar version license costs, and gain an understanding of the technical features included in DB2 for on-premise use – BLU, pureScale, and the Data Partitioning Feature -- as well as a brief overview of cloud deployment and SaaS options. Date:   Thursday, April 6th Time:  11:00am -- 12:00pm EDT The session also includes an overview of the migration process, as anyone considering a move needs to understand the time and effort involved. Sound boring? It won’t be! The session will be delivered by IBM Champions Frank Fillmore and Kim May. Frank has participated in IBM’s annual “Break Free Forum” and Kim has worked with several Oracle customers exploring migrations to DB2. We understand this is a complicated comparison but will do our best to make the session entertaining without including too much Oracle bashing. But maybe a bit. Registration is required to attend. Register HERE.
Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group – March Education Session with Susan LawsonI invite all DB2 for z/OS users in the Mid-Atlantic region to join the Baltimore/ Washington DB2 Users Group (www.bwdb2ug.org) for our annual March education session next Wednesday, March 8th, at the Sheraton Hotel in Columbia, Maryland.  The session cost is $250 in advance and $350 at the door.  Logistics and registration are on the Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group website HERE. The session will be delivered by DB2 Gold Consultant (and terrific presenter) Susan Lawson of YLA and is titled, "DB2 11 and 12 Performance and Availability: What Can I Take Advantage Of?" The session abstract, Susan's bio and the complete outline link are below.   If you are using DB2 v11 or V12 I hope you will join us! Abstract With every new release of DB2 we look to see what features will allow us to improve the capabilities and performance of our existing applications as well as the availability of our data. We also have to plan to utilize new features in our development efforts. This presentation takes a look at the features in DB2 11 and 12 that will improve our performance and provide us with maximum data availability as well as advanced application development. We will be focusing on features that can be utilized by DBAs and application programmers. Speaker Bio – Susan Lawson Susan Lawson is an internationally recognized consultant and lecturer with a background in system and database administration. She currently works with several large clients to help develop, implement and tune some of the worlds’ largest and most complex DB2 databases and applications. She also performs performance and availability audits for many clients to help reduce costs through proper performance tuning and to help ensure availability. Her other activities include authoring books, articles and white papers, presenting at user group meetings, and teaching a variety of DB2 courses. She is an IBM Gold Consultant and an IBM Analytics Champion and is the author of the IBM DB2 11 for z/OS Database Certification Review Guide. BWDB2UG March 8 2017 DB2 11 and 12 Performance and Availability
Thank you Governor Hogan!When I started working for The Fillmore Group over ten years ago, the world of DB2 was far different.  The State of Maryland had probably over a dozen IBM mainframes running state government agencies.  We occasionally delivered training and support, but often struggled with the procurement processes, as we weren't an approved vendor. As I learned, the master vendor list for IT vendors to the State of Maryland adds new vendors only once every 8 to 10 years, as the qualification process (we are talking government here!) is onerous and terribly time consuming for all involved.  So I waited and finally this past year it was time again for open enrollment.  The qualification process WAS onerous and time consuming and required the assistance of Maryland Governor Hogan's office to make the insurance requirements attainable for small businesses like The Fillmore Group. Many thanks Governor Hogan!  Today The Fillmore Group received the fully executed contract to deliver IT services to the State of Maryland.   There aren't as many mainframes as there were ten years ago and efforts have been underway to consolidate their workloads, but we can help.  I think a private cloud running System z with a couple shared IDAA's would be cost effective, efficient, and modern.  Can't wait to get started!
Kim May Takes the Reins at Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group @IDUGDB2 @IBMzAnalyticsMy colleague, Kim May -- Vice President of Business Development at The Fillmore Group, has been elected Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group.  Kim has served on the board of BWDB2UG since 2005 in many capacities such as programming and membership.  BWDB2UG continues to provide strong technical leadership for DB2 practitioners in the US Mid-Atlantic region.  Kim takes over from long-time board Chair Steve Rosenberger. Kim is also an IBM Champion and is very active in the DB2 Community.  As an example, she presented at the IBM World of Watson conference in Las Vegas in 2016.  Kim recently returned from the zAnalytics Bootcamp held annually at IBM Silicon Valley Lab. Kim's business focus in 2017 is the IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator (IDAA) and DB2 running on Linux on System z.  Please join me and the BWDB2UG board in supporting Kim in her new role.
It was 30 years ago today… The Fillmore Group “Founder’s Day” @ffillmorejr @KimMayTFG #IBMAnalytics #IBMzOn Tuesday, January 13, 1987 I sat in the kitchen of my 11 foot wide rowhouse in the Highlandtown section of Baltimore and typed out on a manual typewriter the Articles of Incorporation for The Fillmore Group.  My son, Nathaniel, was five weeks old. Some back-of-the-envelope metrics across the past 30 years: approximately 300 clientsabout 60 consultants have helped train these customers and implement their IBM Analytics softwareAs a consultant, instructor, and/or presenter at technical conferences I have traveled to approximately 20 countries.  Prague is my favorite foreign city; I've been there three times and look forward to returning.I have had two consultants, Ray and Jim, tell me that working for The Fillmore Group "has changed [their] life".  In the beginning it was a common occurrence that an employment verification form from a mortgage underwriter would arrive shortly after a consultant started with TFG.  I know of several consultants that purchased their first home while working with us. My favorite work environment was The World Bank.  The cosmopolitan atmosphere -- working with colleagues from all over the planet -- was delightful.  I helped implement a telephone billing system there using SQL/DS. My most satisfying project was the Oracle to DB2 migration at JP Morgan Chase.  It was a tough, demanding environment with a timeline that was half of the 18 months originally estimated.  But we got it done with the help of Jim, Joe G., Joe L., John, Rebecca, and Teresa.  The customer had an equally talented, hard-working team.  Our contribution to that project was recognized by IBM SVP Steve Mills at the Insight conference that year. As a small business owner, my favorite question from an IBMer (Scott): "Since the deadline can't change, if money were no object what would you do?"  The answer: supply five more consultants to the project.  It was completed on time -- if not under budget. As a technician, my favorite question from an IBMer (Hunter) in the parking lot after a detailed technical presentation to a customer involving replication and federation tools: "We can do that, right?"  The answer: yes we can.  It resulted in a massive data warehouse at a large federal government healthcare agency. I have had the privilege to learn from and share friendships with some of IBM's original developers of relational database technology including Pat, Curt, Don and Don, and Hamid.  For IBM's Hybrid Transaction/Analytic Platform (HTAP) implementations of today I rely on Paul, Tim, Gary, Namik, Knut, Patric, and Udo among many, many others. I also cherish the friendships I have formed with other DB2 Gold Consultants like David, Ted, Bonnie, Jan, Juergen, Julian, Jackie, Kermit, Sheryl, Susan -- and especially Gerry. IBM has been a maddening company with which to partner, but the vast majority of the time The Fillmore Group has benefited from the technical excellence and basic decency of IBM employees.  In return, TFG consultants like Roger and Ravi have delivered innovative, cost-effective IT solutions to our mutual customers.  After more than two decades I still rely on Roger for his calm, wise counsel. There have been tough times, too.  The Fillmore Group overcame at least three financial near-death experiences (1993, 2002, 2006).  At the risk of tempting fate: we never missed a payroll or failed to pay a debt on time. But the best time, by far, was the day Kim May arrived to rent The Fillmore Group's technical training classroom in downtown Baltimore in 2003.  That was the day my life changed forever. This is reverie, not valedictory.  I am still too young to retire.  And I am as jazzed about the possibilities of HTAP, data repositories, and data interoperability (aka "plumbing") in 2017 as I was when I first started working with SQL/DS (maximum storage capacity: 64GB) in the mid 1980s.  We're currently working on a database rehosting project for a local government targeting DB2 for z/Linux and have an IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator (IDAA) v6 Workshop scheduled next month. But I wanted to take a moment to jot down a few thoughts on the past three decades.  Of course, I haven't called out everyone by name who has contributed to our success over the years.  But I truly, sincerely appreciate your hard work, dedication, integrity, smarts, and moxie.  Thank you! In closing, when Curt retired from IBM I asked if he was pleased with a career that had reached a pinnacle as an IBM Fellow.  His response: "It turned out better than I ever could have imagined."  Me too.