IBM eyes new systems with 'integrated expertise' built in

IBM eyes new systems with 'integrated expertise' built in

Summary: IBM on April 11 will "unveil a new era of computing" and a "new family of expert integrated systems," according to hardware chief Rod Adkins.

TOPICS: Hardware, IBM

NEW YORK -- Rod Adkins, senior vice president for IBM Systems and Technology, said Wednesday morning that the company plans to launch a series of systems that will have "integrated expertise" built in.

Speaking at a Wall Street event for customers and prospective customers at Cipriani restaurant in Manhattan, Adkins foreshadowed an April event: on April 11, IBM will "unveil a new era of computing" and a "new family of expert integrated systems," he said.

In other words, IBM is looking to launch a sequel to its "A Smarter Planet" initiative. IBM has long been trumpeting a new "learning age" for computing. (Sounds like an army of mini Watsons to me.)

Adkins, who talked about intelligence being embedded on every device, said that these new systems will combine IBM's semiconductor, research and services advances in an integrated system.

"These systems will continue to evolve the notion of smarter computing," he said.

The company plans to drop further hints leading up to the April launch, according to Adkins. Big Blue has said that it sees Watson's technology being leveraged in multiple industries. Now it sounds like these systems will be rolling out in a more prepackaged format.

Related on ZDNet:

Topics: Hardware, IBM

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • Integrated Expertise..IBM

    Ok, I've listened to a few of these presentations but,


    They've told us nothing except marketing stuff.
  • Welcome to 1980 and the IBM System/38

    It sounds like IBM is re-introducing the IBM System/38 (AKA AS/400, i Series, System i, IBM i for Business). The System/38 was commercially available around 1980. It was the commercial result of an IBM Research project called Future System.

    The System/38 did everything this "expert integrated system" hint at. It was a high-level development platform that eliminated all the low-level decisions. Integrated database. Integrated messaging system. Integrated system management. Common installation procedure. Integrated communications. Standardized user interface. Command language built using human factors engineering. Script language based loosely on PL/I. Hardware independence using a virtualization layer, called the Machine Interface. (Little wonder that the first commercial 64-bit system was the AS/400 because no customer code had to be rewritten to make the migration.)

    When I worked on the System/38 and AS/400, my team often built and deployed software in 10% of the time of our corresponding mainframe or Unix teams. One of the reasons is the integrated platform eliminated all the infrastructure wars. We didn't have to fight over what database, there was just the one. We didn't have to build 20 different deployment packages, there was just the one.

    Little wonder that many of the popular ERP and CRM packages of today, such as JD Edwards, actually had their start on the AS/400.

    But, I guess the System/38 (AS/400) was 30 years ahead of its time. It took tightly coupled platforms such as iPhone and Android to finally sell management on the value of picking a standard platform and concentrating on the business problem instead of wasting time on programmer curiosities such as Jython vs Python vs Groovy wars. Let's face it, when ROI is critical, the shareholders could care less about the programming language, they just want quickly deployed working code and a reduction of the total cost of running software.

    As an IBM advertisement in the UK for the AS/400 in the mid 1990's said, "It does not take an Army to run AS/400". Their sales campaign highlighted the business benefit of the platform achieved by the integrated environment -- a small/medium business did not have to hire a large IT staff to run the AS/400, unlike all other systems.

    I hope System/38 gets a nod during the announcements. It pioneered integrated business system platforms!!