Into the Blue Galaxy

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Operation Blue Galaxy
Shifts in the market, like mobile and cloud, and new delivery and pricing models, have increased the power of individual practitioners. They know the technology, and influence purchasing decisions like never before.  To reach them, IBM has launched ‘Blue Galaxy’, an exciting cross-IBM initiative to show the universe of software developers, architects, administrators, and other practitioners that IBM is their rocket ship to success.

What is Blue Galaxy?
It’s a project, it’s a community, it’s a movement within and beyond IBM.  The best part of IBM is the people — the technical experts and practitioners across IBM.  The Blue Galaxy mission is enabling and unleashing the knowledge, passion, and enthusiasm of the IBM technical community, across all brands and disciplines, and from across the globe, to reach out and engage the world’s practitioners.  Whether it be via events, content, or social media networks, the goal is simple – develop relationships, learn from our audience, and show our expertise.

It’s not about messaging
It’s about the power of connections, with a small c.  It’s people connecting with people via social media: IBMers, IBM Alumni, IBM Business Partners, clients, prospective clients, and the merely curious. Our goal is to help you to build those connections in social networks, growing your digital eminence, sharing knowledge, and becoming part of the larger conversation that is already occurring.

It’s about you
It’s about sharing your voice, your thoughts, your content, your work, and your ideas with other developers, inside and outside of IBM.  Developers trust the opinions of other developers.  By connecting with developers, you have the ability to shape their opinions and thoughts about IBM products and services.  You are in charge of your digital social presence, and the difference it makes for both your personal goals and the goals of IBM. Growing your digital eminence, sharing your knowledge, expanding your network both inside and outside of IBM…. the actions you take now will have long-lasting positive effects on your career.

iconNoCommunityPhoto155.pngSo, how do you get started with Blue Galaxy?
Here are some ways that all Greater IBMers can get involved:

  1. Create or contribute to a conversation:
    You can write a blog post, create a presentation or a video that showcases your thought leadership and technical expertise — the topics of focus are IBM’s technical leadership in Agile, Big Data, Cloud Computing, Mobile Development, and Security.  Even if you can’t create new material, you can comment on an article, tweet (microblog) about it to promote cool content you like and strengthen existing conversations that are highlighting IBM technical leadership in the market.
  2. Connect and interact
    Connect, share, and collaborate on the developerWorks community where you can contribute to forums, download free product trials and share what you like about them with your networks.  You may also want to check out related communities Jazz.net (Agile Transformation) and Service Management Connect.
  3. Meet and follow Blue Galaxy stars
    Some of our technical experts have been on their social journeys for a while. They are our social role models, folks engaging both internally and externally, with dedicated followings. Some are blogging on official IBM blogs and communities, others are contributing through their individual blogs or in other organizations’ communities.  You can find and follow them on Twitter here.
  4. Try Blue Galaxy featured downloads and give feedback
    Some of product trial downloads have been featured by Blue Galaxy because we are especially interested in feedback on these.  Check them out and leave your feedback in the comments section on that post.
  5. Become a Blue Galaxy star
    There are several ways to become a Blue Galaxy star.  First, if you undertake any of the missions noted above, tell us about them – share a comment below telling us what you did.  Since stars are innovative thought leaders who have distinguished themselves in one or more social channels, you could be selected to be featured as a Blue Galaxy star.  Here are some other opportunities:

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Additional resources:

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–Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

Blue Galaxy Featured Downloads

Blue Galaxy spotlights product downloads each month as we are especially interested in feedback on these.  Check out these featured downloads from Aug-Sept 2013 and let us know what you think!  Leave your feedback in the comments below, and share it with your networks too.

DOWNLOAD/TRIAL URL HASHTAGS
Infosphere BigInsights Quick Start Edition  ow.ly/oa6PX #bigdata #hadoop
IBM DB2 Technology Preview  ow.ly/ohYzQ  #json #db2
Rational Team Concert  ow.ly/oCbHF  #rtc
Worklight Developer Edition 6.0  ow.ly/nIBP7  #ibmmobile
Jazz Hub  ow.ly/nIBFw  #jazzhub
Worklight on the IBM SmartCloud  ow.ly/nIC0g  #ibmmobile

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–Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

Watson Leadership Lesson 4: Unleashing Potential Through Education

IBM Schoolhouse, Endicott NY, 1930s

IBM Schoolhouse, Endicott NY, 1930s

IBM’s legendary President Thomas J. Watson, Sr., was a leader of unbridled optimism. “This business of ours has a future,” he noted in 1926, just 12 years after he joined IBM. “It has a past that we are all proud of, but it has a future that will extend beyond my lifetime and beyond your lifetime.”

Much of that optimism was based on his faith in the knowledge, abilities, and character of IBM employees. “Very few persons throughout the country have seen our factory, our School, our Laboratory, or our World Headquarters Building, and the only way they have to judge the character of IBM is by the character of those who represent us.” But he recognized that IBMers were not born – they were made. To that end, he believed that one of his chief responsibilities as IBM’s leader was to unleash the collective potential of his workforce. One of the ways he did that was by placing great emphasis on employee development.

Watson was fond of saying, “There is no saturation point in education,” and he backed those words by building an educational infrastructure that was second to none. IBM’s tradition of investing in employee development dates to 1916 with the creation of the IBM Education Program. Over the next two decades the program would expand to include management education, volunteer study clubs, training for the disabled, and the construction of an IBM Schoolhouse in Endicott, New York in 1933. So deeply ingrained in IBM culture was the notion of personal development, that starting in the 1920s, IBMers began forming after-hour study clubs to increase their knowledge of their professions and the company’s business.

Watson’s emphasis on employee education was not the benevolence of a paternalistic leader – he saw clear business value in this investment in his workforce. “When a man stops studying, stops acquiring knowledge about the business or profession in which he is engaged, he doesn’t stand still,” Watson said. “He starts going backwards.” And backsliding was something every IBMer had to avoid … even Watson himself. “I found out years ago that because I gave so much of my time to my own business I was getting into a rut. So I decided to get out and see what other people were doing, to broaden my mind on business in general and see what I could bring back and apply to my own business.”

IBMers took Watson’s edicts to heart. Between 1938 and 1952, 40% of Endicott employees were enrolled in classes, covering 33 subjects. By 1954, IBM Education worldwide was running more than 50,000 students (internal and external) through its programs. In 1961 alone, 17,000 employees participated in voluntary study courses.

“In this day and age, education is the one Master Key we can depend on to open the door to future progress, “ Watson said in 1930. “The future of the International Business Machines Corporation, and of every person connected with the Company, depends not upon the amount of time we spend in study; but upon what we learn and upon our ability to transfer our knowledge to newcomers in the business so that they may keep step with the pace of IBM—a pace which is constantly increasing!” In the 80 years since, little has changed.

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Paul Lasewicz, IBM Corporate Archivist

Paul Lasewicz, IBM Corporate Archivist

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The January 2013 theme for The Greater IBM Connection is ”leadership”, and The Greater IBM Connection will be sharing various tips, tools, stories, and resources on this topic.

Podcast: What Is IBM Doing To Fight The Growing Skills Gap

fast track

In response to the growing technical skills gap revealed by IBM’s 2012 Tech Trends study, and to help professionals and students learn more about cyber security best practices, IBM rolled out the largest expansion of its Academic Initiative to date earlier this month. For the first time, IBM will offer access to pre-packaged curriculum and training resources on IT security, helping students understand enterprise challenges, do in-depth analysis of trends uncovered in the IBM X-Force report, and gain market-ready cyber security skills.

Check out this podcast to hear Dan Hauenstein, a global lead on IBM’s skills programs, discuss how these new initiatives in cyber security and other advanced technologies will help to solve the global skills epidemic. http://bit.ly/XK6uiF

Innovation Breakthrough: IBM Chip to Use LIGHT to Significantly Accelerate Your Internet

What can go faster than the speed of light? We’ve all learned this from an early age: nothing. And now IBM has developed a chip that makes it easier to shuttle data about using pulses of light instead of electrical signals.

The chip offers a way to move large amounts of information between processors in computer servers at much higher speeds than today’s.

Close-up of IBM computer chip

The development team said that using light instead of electrons to transmit data has two key advantages:

  • Data can be sent longer distances between different parts of a server center without risking a loss of information.
  • Data transfer speeds are faster, as light can be used to carry more information at once through cables.

Another significance of this breakthrough? It’s much cheaper than other available options. More details here. (BBC News)