25 years of IBM i innovation


IBM i at 25

IBM i at 25

It was June 1988 and with the help of then stars from the hit television show M.A.S.H., IBM launched the new AS/400. At the time, AS/400, now IBM i and part of IBM Power Systems, helped businesses, worldwide, transform the delivery of IT. Created as an application system, the AS/400 helped fuel the explosion of industry applications for mid-sized companies. Renowned for its simplicity and reliability, it generated the industry’s most passionate user community. Sold through business partners, with new approaches to IBM service and support, it forever changed how IBM provides an exceptional experience to clients.

Today we celebrate IBM i at 25.

Through the collaborative efforts of our clients, Business Partners and ISVs, IBM i has helped to create a new wave on innovation that continues today. Businesses invested in a system that—through integration— promised it would be easy-to-use and offer low cost of operations. A system that promised investment protection for applications whatever new technologies might emerge. They placed their trust in a system that promised levels of security and resiliency among the very best in the industry. With IBM i, I believe we delivered on those promises. But we certainly could not have done it without the support of everyone in the IBM i community.

Five years ago on April 2, 2008, we launched Power Systems, bringing together AIX, IBM i and Linux onto a single product line. We chose the COMMON user group conference in Nashville as the location for that announcement. We wanted to lay out the future strategy for IBM i users and how they would be able to leverage our major investments in POWER processor and software technologies. Since 2008, we have delivered on that strategy with two major releases of IBM i, featuring key new capabilities such as PowerVM live partition mobility. Our development team is now working on the next IBM i release—targeted for 2014–with major new capabilities like DB2 row and column access control. Most recently we delivered support for IBM i on day one on both our latest POWER7+ based servers and on our new family of PureFlex systems.

Fittingly, our IBM i at 25 celebrations will also start, where it all began – at COMMON, a group that more than any other has embodied the spirit of our user community. Starting today, our celebrations will be an opportunity to share your stories and reflections on these twenty-five years of innovation . You can watch the story unfold on our new IBMi25 Facebook page. Over the next three months we will feature twenty-five intriguing vignettes on the communities, the technologies and the businesses behind IBM i. You can also join the IBM i at 25 conversation on Twitter at #IBMi25. And, you can watch new YouTube videos –the first of which is released today—will feature insights from Frank Soltis, the chief scientist of the AS/400, and Steve Will, today’s chief architect of IBM i.

Of course, the celebrations will also include stops throughout the year at our many other user groups around the world. I hope you will share my message of thanks and congratulations with your friends and colleagues.

I would like to thank you again and I look forward to sharing our experiences of IBM i at 25.

Join the celebration socially on Facebook and Twitter!

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One Response to 25 years of IBM i innovation

  1. Michael Russell says:

    Long live the best business operating system and application development platform EVER!

    I am curious, why is the birthday of IBM i traced back to its prom date (teenage coming-of-age celebration) of the AS/400 announcement instead of traced back to its true birth date (first commercial representation) of the IBM System/38 in the late 1970’s.

    I’ve been working on this platform since the System/38 CPF Version 1.

    IBM’s new PureApplication Server has a lot to learn from IBM i.

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