MQGem at GSE Nordic

GSE Nordic IconMQGem Software was at the Guide SHARE Europe (GSE) Nordic Region Conference in June. Morag Hughson was there presenting on IBM MQ topics, as was Jamie Squibb from IBM Hursley.

The conference is a three day event held each summer somewhere in the Nordic Region. In 2015 it was the turn of Gothenburg in Sweden. The conference is a z/OS platform conference having the following tracks of technical education:-

Day One – Monday

So, what comes to mind when you combine Gothenburg and IBM mainframes, and the answer is of course Volvo. The Volvo company is very important to Sweden, and they have a truck plant in Gothenburg which is all run by IBM mainframes. The plant assembles trucks on a production line, however, unlike many factory production lines, each truck is unique since each is ordered by a customer with the customisations they need. The applications that ensure the correct parts are available at the correct point in the production line at the correct time, are all running on an IBM mainframe. The conference began in the morning with a tour of the plant on the “Tuve Train” and then a presentation by Volvo IT.

After lunch on Day 1, the technical education sessions began, with an opening keynote from IBM speakers Gene Fuh (Director of z Systems WW Technical Enablement and Business Development) and Ian Mitchell (CICS Distinguished Engineer from the IBM Hursley Lab). They told us about the new z13 mainframe and how the z/OS subsystems were exploiting its new capabilities, “z Technology the power in the future”.

GSENordic Opening Keynote

Gene Fuh and Ian Mitchell were the speakers for the Opening Keynote
Photo by Larry England

After the opening sessions the audience split into the various tracks for more targeted breakout sessions.

Monday Evening

GSENordic Paddan Tour

The Paddan boats took us under some very low bridges – Duck!
Photo by Larry England

The evening event on Day 1 was a tour down the Göta älv in Gothenburg on Paddan boats, under lots of low bridges and through the one remaining canal lock, and out into the harbour where we then arrived at the River Cafe for a standing buffet. Our tour guides were very entertaining, and apart from a badly timed heavy rain shower that meant some people in the boats got wet, it was an excellent evening event.

GSENordic Buffet

A standing buffer and some networking for evening 1
Photo by Larry England

Day Two – Tuesday

The timetable for Day 2 provided six breakout session slots with a choice of 36 different technical sessions to choose from. Morag gave a presentation about “Monitoring and Auditing MQ”, and Jamie gave the “Introduction to IBM MQ and IIB/MB” presentation in the afternoon.

One of the other sessions that ran on Day 2 was a panel discussion with a number of z platform IBM experts. The discussion ranged from the visibility of the platform to how you can be more agile in the development of your applications on the platform.

Tuesday Evening

The evening of Day 2 was the Gala Dinner. This was held in the Imagine restaurant on the top (29th) floor of the hotel where we were treated to a great view over the city, once the rain stopped and the clouds lifted. After a lovely meal, music from local cover band Claes Lindberg Covershow began and quite a number of people were up dancing.

Day Three – Wednesday

On the third and final day there were four more breakout session slots before the closing keynote. Jamie gave a presentation about “Business Availability during an MQ upgrade” and then stood in to present “Designing and Analysing MB/IIB performance on z/OS” since the speaker was unable to be there. Morag gave a presentation on “Securing your z/OS Queue Manager” after lunch.

GSENordic Morag presenting

Morag gives a presentation on z/OS MQ security
Photo by Jamie Squibb

The closing keynote was given by Larry England, an IBMer from the USA, who told us about a number of “Cool thing on z/OS” including the ability to run z/OS emulation images with RD&T in SoftLayer and then be able to record snapshots using IBM Development and Test Environment Services (IDTES) a.k.a. SkyTap. We can see lots of opportunities with this very cool combination.

After the closing keynote, Rajesh Khare, the incoming conference manager, took us through a summary of the conference and also told us where next years event will be. It will be in Reykjavik, Iceland in 2016.

The Steering Committee said a public Goodbye to Morag, who has served on the GSE Nordic Region Conference Steering Committee since 2009.

It was a great conference, enjoyed by all who attended and was at a very high standard as we have come to expect from this great conference and its organising committee.

Here’s a great album of photos from Jamie.


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