SHARE is evolving with the technology that powers the mainframe. One part of that evolution has been to move away from static programs and projects to five Focus Areas with Tracks: Core Platform, New and Innovative Technologies, Service Delivery, Application Development, and Professional Skills.
These areas represent key topics that are top of mind among mainframers. Within these overarching Focus Areas are Tracks that provide a deeper dive into the technology inside the enterprise IT ecosystem.
Dusty Rivers, leader for SHARE’s Application Development Focus Area, senior director for US systems Z at Mainline Information Systems, and IBM Lifetime Champion for Z, and Rick Barlow, leader of SHARE’s Core Platform Focus Area and senior z/VM specialist at Velocity Software, say that the Tracks underneath their Focus Areas are fluid. This fluidity is amplified through the session submission process for SHARE events in which leaders can identify emerging themes that can be elevated into new Tracks and Focus Areas. Barlow says, “Focus Area leaders and SHARE operations leadership will collaboratively review the list of Tracks. As we begin planning for each event, we attempt to determine if we need more focus on a topic or if there are topics that don't draw sufficient attendance and should be dropped for the following event.”
Rivers adds that some Tracks could be split down further into subtracks, depending on changes in the industry or the membership’s needs. “For instance, under the APIs Track in the Application Development Focus Area, a subtrack could be created for specific types, such as those that use Ansible,” says Rivers.
Additionally, Focus Areas and Tracks ensure that each has a subject matter expert at the helm. For instance, the CICS Track under the Application Development Focus Area has two leaders who can help with vetting, editing, and scheduling session submissions for SHARE events. According to Rivers, Track leaders will eventually have influence on not only event subject matter, but also online content in SHARE’d Knowledge, which is an exclusive benefit for individual members.
Leadership for each Focus Area and Track is important to SHARE because it ensures that the content addressing those technologies or advancements is customizable to the needs of the membership. With subject matter experts leading the way, members can be assured that sessions on those topics will be fresh, innovative, and useful for their day-to-day work whether it is available at a live event or online.
SHARE has not only expanded its available content and the visibility of mainframe technology, but also its ability to recognize long-time volunteers under the new Focus Area and Tracks structure.
As the mainframe space evolves with new technologies, such as quantum computing, and new products, SHARE members will continue to not only learn from the expertise of their peers, but they also have a greater incentive to share their own knowledge by volunteering for Focus Areas and Tracks. Now, let’s get focused and make tracks into the mainframe’s future, together.
TAGS: share updates , focus areas
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