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Awards, thanks, and a new conference location

There’s lots of news to share this issue, but I want to start with a nod to this issue’s theme of mission-critical applications. Informix may not have been used at NASA like some other IBM software but it is all over the world in other mission-critical applications: the phone system on Air Force One and at the White House; the emergency (911) phone system of the United States; and the backbone of retail chains, hotel and airline reservation systems, banking systems, and TV and radio stations.

From my perspective, the biggest mission-critical job that Informix does is keep the IIUG server up and running. The database isn’t large, but it is constantly being hit with OLTP transactions (mostly from the website). It has only been rebooted once in almost three years—and that was because it was being taken on a car ride to its new home, so we had to shut it down to move it. How often do you see that?

On to the fun stuff! For the last four years the IIUG conference has been hosted by the amazing people at the Overland Park Marriott in Overland Park, Kansas. I need to close out one last bit of 2011 conference business by thanking our IIUG conference party sponsor, Fuzzy Logix. The company provides analytic libraries and consulting services; it also made the fantastic bash at the 2011 IIUG conference possible. Thank you, Fuzzy Logix!

But now we are proud to announce that the 2012 IIUG Informix Conference will be moving west to the Marriott Mission Valley in San Diego, California. The event will run April 22–25, 2012, and we’re looking forward to more meeting space, some fabulous weather, and a location that’s just 15 minutes from both the airport and downtown San Diego. Watch this column and the IIUG site for more conference information as details become available. The call for presentations should be going out just as you’re reading this, and remember: any Informix user who presents at the conference gets a free pass. See you in San Diego!

I suppose that I must admit to getting old, since I am still new to social media. But our newest favorite IBMers Beth Flood and Louis Cherian are making the Informix voice heard, and many of the Informix family are on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter (I’m on some of these too). Social media can connect our community in ways that were not previously possible, help us share information and experiences, and encourage people who are evaluating Informix to join the community. Please help make the Informix community as vibrant and successful as possible by following and joining in the conversation. Check out the links below for details.

Finally, I have a few more notes of thanks and congratulations. Al Martin is stepping down after serving as IBM IIUG board representative for the past two and a half years. Thanks to Al for his service from the entire IIUG board. And congratulations to Kim Non Liew and Cathy Elliott, winners of the 2011 IIUG Director’s Award. This lifetime achievement award is presented annually, and both Kim and Cathy are especially deserving recipients. Well done!