I visited IDUG (International DB2 Users Group) in Austin, Texas, the week of May 23. We had a booth and had good traffic. Our presentations and party were well attended. It was “old home week” for me as many friends and previous colleagues dropped by to say hi.
Many of the visitors to our booth were DB2 LUW professionals and quickly lost interest in our z/OS offerings. However, there were plenty of DB2 z/OS folks who dropped by to talk and who understood our offerings.
I noticed that many of the attendees had a “first time attendee” ribbon attached to their badge. I would ask them if they were there for DB2 LUW or DB2 z/OS. A surprisingly large number of them were there for DB2 z/OS! A few of them were in their 40s or 50s and attending IDUG as part of a career change. Most of them were in their 20s or 30s and just entering the IT business as DB2 z/OS professionals.
This is encouraging. The next generation of z/OS professionals are coming up and are excited about the future of DB2 on the mainframe! New applications are being developed to help drive the growth of businesses that are branching into mobile technologies. Developers are using new generation languages to solve business problems and storing their data on DB2 z/OS databases. For this new generation, Big Data Analytics is a growing area of excitement as well as how the newer versions of DB2 z/OS couple hardware and software to address this burgeoning business.
Companies are investing in products and offerings that help the DB2 professional to develop efficient SQL, or exploit alternative technology in conjunction with SQL to achieve even better performance. DB2 professionals have learned that tuning DB2 can result in overall cost savings for their companies. Not just meeting SLA, but actually reducing operating costs and license charges. Data Replication is an area of growing requirements and many solutions can help address that.
In short, IDUG reinforced the topic that I have been discussing all year: the mainframe is not going away any time soon, and the next generation of IT professionals are investing time and effort into being part of the continued success of the mainframe platform.
Long live the mainframe—and DB2 z/OS!