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COMMON, the Minneapolis Advantage

May 9, 2011

With the COMMON conference being held in Minneapolis this year, there were a few unique opportunities that made this conference a little special that I thought would be nice to share with the larger i community.

The temperatures were very chilly early this week, unusually cold for early May, with even some snow flurries in the air – definitely not the special part of the week. I'm sure that made some of the attendees from warmer climates wonder why anyone would want live in Minnesota anyway!? Everyone was appreciative of the skyway system in Minneapolis to avoid braving the cold May temperatures. (OK, maybe not everyone, but this native Minnesotan sure was!)

COMMON and IBM worked together to provide the ability for people from IBM Rochester to attend COMMON for one day. Because most of the IBM i development team in Rochester is unable to attend COMMON, this gave them the opportunity to see what the conference is all about, attend a few sessions, the Expo, and the evening events. It also gave them the chance to “get out” and speak to some of our clients. I talked to some of the Rochester developers who rarely get this kind of an opportunity, and the feedback I got was overwhelmingly positive. They heard about interesting businesses, small businesses, facets of what customers really like about IBM i and Rochester (our support!), and many other things.

Likewise, I know many COMMON attendees appreciated the ability to talk to members of the development team. It also gave IBM the ability to provide a wide range of expertise in the IBM Power Bar in the expo, as well as giving additional people the opportunity to present technical sessions.

COMMON also offered tours of the IBM Rochester facility. Since my day job at IBM is working in the Performance and Scalability Services Center, which used to be known as the Rochester Benchmark Center, I rode the bus down to Rochester with those signed up to take to tour so I could lead the tour of our test facility. The excitement of our clients to see the Rochester facility is wonderful. The IBM Rochester Wiki page has some interesting information about the architecture of the big blue buildings.

And finally, the call for presentations for the fall COMMON conference is now out. The following information was in the COMMON Daily on Tuesday and Wednesday:

The call for presentations for 2011 Fall Conference and Expo is now open. The conference will take place October 3-5 at the Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront, St. Petersburg, Florida. The education team is looking for sessions and all day workshops in every course of study. We are particularly interested in sessions on New Technology and RPG.

Current speakers should visit their speaker portal to submit sessions.  But any member can submit a new session by following this link.

The COMMON Education team is always looking for new content to add to the conference agenda and for new speakers. I'd also like to reiterate what I wrote last week about volunteers – there are several open positions on the Education team, and if you'd like to get involved and help to shape the agenda for future conferences, consider volunteering.

Twitter: #ibmi @DawnMayiCan #COMMONUG, #ibmiuser

Posted May 9, 2011| Permalink