IBM Happenings: May 2008

IBM LogoThe month started out with the Business Partner Leadership Conference in Los Angeles and then was filled with a slew of announcements in hardware, software, services, acquisitions, and strategic alliances. The list of announcements made during the month is below. One of the most interesting things IBM did in May was to release a Global CEO Study. Being the largest information technology solutions provider in the world, it is imperative for IBM to have a keen understanding of the priorities of the top management of it’s clients. The idea is to stay ahead of the curve and have the skills and resources in place to meet upcoming demand. IBM sent senior people to interview 1,130 CEO’s from 40 countries to capture insights on how the challenges CEO’s face today will impact the future of business.

It was the largest study of chief executives ever conducted — spanning 32 industries. This was not SurveyMonkey — it was face-to-face interviews. The study revealed that 83 percent of CEO’s expect substantial change in the future, and are optimistic they can successfully manage change. The catch is that the CEO’s report that their ability to effectively manage change is increasing at a far slower pace. The gap between the rate of change and the skills available is growing. This is bad news in some respects, but certainly good news for IBM which increasingly gains it’s revenue and profits by filling skill gaps for clients.

A somewhat surprising insight from the study is that CEO’s believe that the most important changes are occurring within their existing customer base. Two kinds of customers are emerging. First is the ‘information omnivore’ who craves knowing everything about everything and spends a good portion of their time (maybe most of their time) online. The other customer is the ‘socially-minded’ customer. This type of person can’t get enough of providing and retrieving information about where they are, where their friends are, what they are doing, what their favorite things are, and arranging a rendezvous in both virtual and real world places. The CEO’s plan substantial increases in investments to reach both of these customer types. This spells opportunity for IBM. Take a look at a YouTube video clip [3:08] with more insight about the CEO Study.
Speaking of CEO’s, two of the technology industry’s finest got together on stage at the Business Partner Leadership Conference in Los Angeles. Eric Schmidt of Google and Sam Palmisano of IBM have more in common than you might think. Eric cut his teeth on IBM’s largest scientific computers and has been a devotee of advanced computing architecture throughout his career. Sam has a conviction about the role of information omnivores and social computing. The common ground is cloud computing. The two companies announced an initiative to promote new software development methods which will help students and researchers address the challenges of Internet-scale applications in the future. The goal is to improve computer science students’ knowledge of highly parallel computing practices. IBM and Google are teaming up to provide hardware, software and services to augment university curricula and expand research horizons. The University of Washington was the first to join the initiative but the program is spreading to other leading schools around the world. The project combines IBM’s historic strengths in scientific, business and secure-transaction computing with Google’s complementary expertise in Web computing and massively scaled clusters. It seems very likely that the IBM-Google collaboration will change the way large-scale computing is exploited over the years ahead. Here is a YouTube video clip [49:26] of what Eric Schmidt had to say at the Los Angeles meeting.

List of Announcements for May 2008

IBM publishes Global CEO Study

The IBM Global CEO Study, based on interviews with 1,130 CEO’s from 40 countries, captures insights on how the challenges CEO’s face today will impact the future of business.

IBM raises bar with self checkout system

The IBM AnyPlace Checkout system allows consumers to shop for and check out purchases practically anywhere in a store giving retailers built-in flexibility and improved customer service.

IBM delivers pre-packaged solutions for enterprises

IBM announced a new offering, KOBI, to help small and midsize enterprises rapidly deploy SAP software on IBM Power Systems.

IBM, Lockheed Martin team for FBI program

IBM joined Lockheed Martin’s industry team to develop and maintain the new state-of-the-art biometrics Next Generation Identification system for the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

IBM boosts performance on BladeCenter servers

IBM announced breakthrough performance running the SAP NetWeaver Business Intelligence Accelerator component of the SAP NetWeaver platform on IBM BladeCenter servers.

IBM unveils Insurance Operations of the Future

IBM announced two new advances in the insurance industry, powered by SOA, which will handle core functions more efficiently.

IBM tool identifies new growth opportunities

Grow Your Business with IBM Software will automatically recommend IBM software scenarios that utilize Business Partners’ existing areas of expertise and available skills.

IBM expands BlackBerry services

IBM and Research in Motion announced a new suite of services offering that will build upon the BlackBerry Enterprise Server product line.

IBM increases High Performance Computing capabilities

The IBM BladeCenter QS22, a new, economical supercomputing technology, was introduced to meet growing commercial needs.

IBM, Hertz expand business partnership

IBM will provide global information technology to support Hertz’s reengineering and efficiency improvement efforts.

IBM introduces “Software for a Greener World”

IBM “Software for a Greener World” will provide businesses  with a comprehensive strategy and new offerings to achieve their green goals.

IBM unveils carbon management analysis tool

The Carbon Tradeoff Modeler will enable organizations to analyze and manage the climate impact of their supply chains.

IBM expands Tivoli software offerings

IBM’s new software offerings are designed to help customers manage their mid-market businesses and to meet the unique requirements of growing businesses.

IBM announces Telelogic portfolio enhancements

IBM announced enhancements to the Telelogic software and systems development tools portfolio, which will cut development time and cost.

IBM unveils new x86 servers

Three IBM System x servers will feature the Quad-Core AMD Opteron processor, offering exceptional power-efficiency, performance and virtualization capabilities.

IBM opens Global Delivery Center in India

IBM Global Business Services inaugurated its fourth Global Delivery Center in Pune to  provide clients worldwide with business consulting and application services.
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