Talsco Weekly: A different take on the Cloud

Welcome to another edition of Talsco Weekly

Cloud:  A different take on the Cloud.
Learning:  A Three-Step Learning Model.
Development:  What is a full-stack developer?
IBM i Update:  Navigator Updates.
Open Source:  The future of rendering in React.


A different take on the Cloud

A well-known project management software company, Basecamp, has been running partially in the cloud (hybrid) for more than a decade.

And now, they are thinking about leaving.

They run:

“extensively in both Amazon’s cloud and Google’s cloud. We’ve run on bare virtual machines, we’ve run on Kubernetes. We’ve seen all the cloud has to offer, and tried most of it.

In their case, they have concluded: “Renting computers is (mostly) a bad deal for medium-sized companies like ours with stable growth. The savings promised in reduced complexity never materialized.”

Does this mean having the cloud as part of your solution is wrong?

Of course not. But it highlights that just because you can go to the cloud does not mean you should.

The article goes on to point out that the “cloud excels at two ends of the spectrum.”

The “first end”: “is when your application is so simple and low traffic that you really do save on complexity by starting” in the cloud.
The “second end”: “is when your load is highly irregular.”

There is a “perception that the cloud is simpler, set it and forget it,” but is that really true?

“Some things are simpler, others more complex, but on the whole, I’ve yet to hear of organizations at our scale being able to materially shrink their operations team, just because they moved to the cloud.”

So, how does this apply to “IBM i customers”?

This is where it gets more complex.

It’s one thing to talk about the benefits of the cloud vs on-prem when it comes to new software or an application. But how does one determine the cost and benefits when it comes to the mix of applications that are found in an organization that has been in business for thirty or more years?

Most organizations have:

Custom ERP Systems (sometimes more than one)
3rd Party ERP Packages
EDI Systems
Data & Data warehouses
Custom or packaged WMS Systems

Companies are taking a “hard look at the value of running” their own powerplant vs the cloud. While much of the same “tooling that enabled the cloud is available for your own machines,” there is also value in migrating some workloads to the cloud.

What do you think?


A Three-Step Learning Model

As the IBM i ecosystem continues to develop and evolve, the future IBM i Developer will be asked to do more than develop RPG applications. The ability to pick up on new technologies will be essential.

Here is a Three-Step Learning Model, which is “a simple, yet powerful framework for learning anything new.”


“Read & Research: Start horizontal for breadth and then go vertical for depth. Take your time in the initial research phase.”
“Teach: Distill the learnings into a teaching session for a group of uninitiated students.”
“Assess & Iterate: Reflect on the questions asked by the students to highlight the gaps in your knowledge. Iterate on the process to close those knowledge gaps.”

Learn more about it “here.”


What is a full-stack developer?

“A full-stack developer creates and deploys the front-end and back-end elements of a website, web application, or computer program.”

“Full-stack developers are responsible for converting the elements of web design into executable code; coding the server-side elements of a web product; working with different programming languages and technologies to develop websites, web applications, or computer programs; and modifying and testing web products or software.”

IBM i Update

Navigator Updates

“The Technology Refreshes have brought IBM closer to completing the transition to the new Navigator from the old Navigator product, which is susceptible to the Log4j security vulnerability. While the advances in IBM i 7.5 TR1 and 7.4 TR7 will help customers, the new Navigator product will still not be at feature parity with old Nav when the plug is pulled on the heritage product at the end of the year.”

IBM “has been encouraging its IBM i customer base to accelerate its adoption of the new Navigator,” and there is good reason for it. There are a number of updates that offer value.

The “new Nav” is entirely new.

Instead of a Java code base, it is now writing with “Angular and JavaScript, which provides a much snappier Web experience for customers.” The UI is much better too.

There are many reasons to be proud of the newer Nav:

Fully embraces the use SQL-based IBM i services
“Users can now see information about IASPs for each monitored system on their Navigator homepage and in Work Management tables and panels.”
“Integration with Performance Data Investigator (PDI) improves with this release.”
“The System Monitor Visualization panel from older Navigator has been recreated.”
“There is a new audit configuration screen that lets a user see different auditing actions available and whether it’s enabled or disabled.”
Intrusion detection capability has been added.
“Better network monitoring and management capabilities”

While there have been a number of changes, there is much more in the works.

Find more of the details here.

Open Source

The future of rendering in React

React and other UI tools are becoming more common in the IBM i community. It’s important to keep up to date as well as familiarize yourself with the tooling.

This article looks “at React’s current rendering patterns, their problems, and how the new patterns introduced with React 18 aim to fix those problems.”


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