Featured Article

Matching Mobile With the Mainframe

System z is a secure platform to handle mobile’s growth

Read more »

Member Spotlight

DARREN SURCH
COO

Company—
Interskill Learning

Years in IT—

25

My Unusual Mainframe Job—
Mine has been different than the typical mainframe story. I was working as a mainframe application development programmer in 1990 when the head of a mainframe training college approached me and asked me if I would be interested in working with some of the brightest mainframe subject matter experts (SMEs) in the industry to develop an exciting new type of training called Computer Based Training (CBT).

So my unusual mainframe job began, extracting knowledge and experience from the amazing minds of these SMEs and using (then) state-of-the-art authoring packages and graphics packages to design CBT. These SMEs were some of the smartest people I had ever met and as well as learning so much from them technically, I also learned a lot about the mainframe culture and the love we all have for these incredible machines.

Back in those pre-Internet days we would visit our new clients at their data centers around the country and install this mainframe CBT on their standalone IBM PS2 PCs using a 3-foot high stack of floppy disks, slowly inserting one, after another, after another. Now, decades later in the Internet age, e-learning is accessed instantly on laptops and tablets and smartphones, day or night, from anywhere in the world. We can enable comprehensive mainframe training programs with thousands of hours of mainframe training to entire mainframe workforces in a day. How things have changed!

This has not been the typical mainframe job, I grant you, but one that has given me an amazing overview of this vital industry and of its many and varied and always exceptional people. I am proud to say that I am a mainframer!

My favorite mainframe attribute—
As mentioned above, my favorite part about this industry is the mainframe culture. The global brotherhood of people who speak the same strange, technical language and work on these ever-changing, ever more powerful machines that enable the running of countries and global business. I am glad to have been a part of this culture for so long and am proud to be doing my part to train the zNextGeneration to help insure the mainframe’s future.

See more Member Spotlights.

Recent Blog Posts

Evangelizing Mainframe

by Valerie Dennis

07/22/2014

Visit Destination z at SHARE in Pittsburgh For Your Caricature Keepsake

During the SHARE Technology Exchange Expo from Aug. 4 to 6, I would love for you to stop by the Destination z booth, number 412, and say hello. While at the booth, you can connect with members of the community and receive a caricature keepsake for you to remember your time in Pittsburgh. ... Read more »

Mainframe World

by Trevor Eddolls

Sun, 27 Jul 2014 05:27:46 GMT

Gamification of health

We all know playing ... Read more »

Dancing Dinosaur

by Alan Radding

Fri, 25 Jul 2014 15:07:45 +0000

IBM-Apple Deal Enhanced by New z/OS Pricing Discounts

z/OS pricing discoun ... Read more »

Getting the Most from DB2 for z/OS and System z

by Willie Favero

Fri, 18 Jul 2014 20:23:43 GMT

My previous RDS sort discussions

(Posted Thursday, Ju ... Read more »

Mainframe Watch Belgium

by Marc Wambeke

...

President's Corner

by Erika Morphy

Friday, June 27, 2014 10:37 AM

50 Things that Turned 50 with the Mainframe

It's a milestone year for the mainframe, which celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2014... Read more »

COMMUNITY CARICATURES

Check out the Destination z community caricatures from:
Enterprise2013
SHARE Anaheim 2014




Most Read

The Truth Will Set You Free

Anyone who's worked with mainframes has heard cringe-worthy comments about them: misconceptions, misinformation, misunderstandings, etc. While it's tempting to ignore such nonsense, doing so doesn't serve your career, employer or the mainframe community. ... Read more »

Selling Students on the Mainframe

At the enterprise computing level, perhaps no other piece of hardware is as much a victim of its own success as the IBM mainframe. While some IT newcomers see it as archaic, in reality, the mainframe continues to be the platform of choice for many of the world’s largest organizations. ... Read more »

Destination z Tips and Techniques Challenge

IBM Destination z wants your expertise! Submit a mainframe-related tip or technique in our community forum for a chance to win the first Destination z Challenge. ... Read more »