Mainframe

My mind is getting cloudy…

I’m sitting in a big Dallas hotel with hundreds of other attendees at a “Microsoft Cloud Roadshow” event. This is not a “C-Suite” event; I’ve been the only CIO at the table each time. No, these are programming managers, security officers, infrastructure geeks. I’ve asked around every chance I get, and after my (totally unscientific) poll, here’s what I discovered: more of these technical folks attending a cloud event trust the mainframe more than the cloud!

That was eye-opening for me, since I both trust and distrust ANY kind of technology, depending on what it’s being used for and how it’s being used.  But it seems that, in spite of the relentless barrage of analyst and media hype about the cloud, real IT people from real companies in America’s heartland might still be ‘closet’ mainframe fans.  And why shouldn’t they be?

Where else but in the mainframe do you get hardware-based security that’s built in rather than added on?  Where else but in the mainframe do you get built-in huge vertical and horizontal scalability?  Where else is performance management instrumentation built in (ever try to troubleshoot a hybrid cloud application with intermittent performance issues)?

Sitting here, listening to “cloud, cloud, cloud,” it struck me: maybe if we’d stayed on mainframes instead of splintering the IT infrastructure, we wouldn’t be so desperate for the familiar benefits of today’s panacea.

Wayne Sadin
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