Former Fresh Face Bartlomiej Grabowski Continues to Promote IBM i
A Q&A on promoting IBM i with Bartlomiej Grabowski, principal system specialist, DHL IT Services.
Image by Jiri Lizler
By Emily Peterson12/02/2019
IBM Systems Magazine (ISM): Can you explain your role at DHL IT Services?
Bartlomiej Grabowski (BG): The role as principal system specialist is rooted in everything related to the IBM Power Systems* platform and IBM i. It involves everything from solving everyday issues through designing, and building tools that simplify, speed up, and improve tasks performed by system administrators, to architecture work, such as designing hardware configuration and implementing new solutions. Sometimes, it’s challenging because it’s not always about selecting a technical solution. It’s also about convincing people to use it.
ISM: You hold a Redbooks* platinum author title. What professional achievement are you most proud of? Why?
BG: The platinum Redbooks achievement is most important to me. I remember my beginnings, when Redbooks publications were my bible. You can imagine my happiness when I was selected for the first residency program. After that, it took me almost eight years to achieve platinum recognition. I know how difficult is to be selected to the Redbooks project. For a platinum badge, you need to be selected multiple times, and achieving all of this as non-IBMer sounds nearly impossible.
ISM: You’ve mentioned before that your favorite IBM product is IBM i. Can you explain why?
BG: I grew up along OSes such as DOS and Windows*, and I always liked to solve problems in a PC configuration. No matter how good you would be, there were always issues that couldn’t be avoided or easily solved. When you start to work with an OS like IBM i, you see that it was designed from scratch in a way that avoids these issues , and you see that a properly managed system doesn’t crash. Applications may run months or years without being restarted. Almost everything comes with a logic. You see the beauty of it.
These days, it's extremely easy to share content globally. If the content brings value, the community will grow by itself.
ISM: How do you promote IBM i in your current role at DHL? How do you promote IBM i in the greater user community?
BG: In DHL, I need to convince people that IBM i isn’t a dinosaur that’s dying, but a system with modern solutions. I think one of the biggest gaps is the lack of skilled staff and a lack of awareness in the IT community. In order to share the knowledge to the greater community I write my personal blog (www.theibmi.org) and do a lot of tweeting.
ISM: Can you tell us about anything new or innovative you’re working on?
BG: I’m super excited about my secret project, because I believe it will be a big thing. It’s a tool that can simplify and speed up the building of LPARs. In other words, it will be a menu-driven interface that will automate all processes done on the HMC and VIO servers in order to build an LPAR. Perhaps most important for the community, it will be given for free.
It offers the capability to provision an IBM i LPAR quickly and easily, no matter what storage is being used (internal or external), in a way that no other tool on the market can. In my opinion, this is exactly the functionality that all cloud providers expect. I encourage people to follow me on a social media, where they can find out more.
ISM: What’s your biggest tip for promoting yourself in the IT industry?
BG: Bring some extra value to the industry and share. Show examples of how problems can be solved, avoided or a functionality can be improved. Use social media to spread the word. Don’t share negative messages. People don’t like bad information. We all know the world isn’t perfect, but we all can try to change it with positive information. These days, it’s extremely easy to share content globally. If the content brings value, the community will grow by itself.
Emily Peterson is a copy editor and social media specialist for IBM Systems Magazine.