The COMMON 2011 Annual Meeting was underway yesterday. It's always exciting to be part of the conference – both behind the scenes and as a speaker.
My day started off with a breakfast meeting for the members of the education team. Behind the scenes, I'm the IBM liaison to COMMON for the conference agenda-planning work. The education team consists of subject matter experts (SMEs) from many technical areas within and outside IBM. The education team works throughout the year planning the Spring Annual Meeting and the Fall Conference.
COMMON relies on volunteers for many roles, of which the education team is one. COMMON has many volunteer opportunities if you’d like to get involved in helping with the conference.
The opening session was very well attended and was one of the best opening sessions I can remember. Tom Rosamilia, general manager of Power and z Systems gave an update on Power systems. You probably had already heard that IBM sold of out Power7 720 and 740 models in the fourth quarter of last year. ou probably also know that it’s IBM i that drives the sales of the low-end Power systems models.
Eric Brown, who worked on Watson, gave a presentation that went into more detail in the development of the natural language-processing software and explained the challenges of developing software to understand natural language. It was a very interesting presentation; everyone I talked to after the session found it fascinating.
If you weren’t able to attend COMMON, the opening session was streamed live, and remains available from the COMMON website.
After the opening session was the expo and then the “Ask the Experts” events. These were pretty typical events compared to other years. However, one thing stands out--I had several people tell me how much they enjoy reading this blog and the content it covers, and someone even said, “Hey, you're that blogging lady!” Feedback is always appreciated, as is input. As COMMON attendees are getting plenty of education this week, if there are topics that you’d like to see me write about, you can comment to this blog or send me an email.
Twitter: #ibmi @DawnMayiCan #COMMONUG, #ibmiuser