Seiden Group is here

We are pleased to announce the start of a re-branding from Alan Seiden Consulting to “Seiden Group,” reflecting our evolution from a one-person consultancy to a team of experts. We still specialize in PHP and open source on IBM i, but now we’ve gained the ability to manage and develop large projects, all while mentoring our clients so that they can become self-sufficient if they so choose. Our range of skills has also broadened to include many complementary areas including RPG, User Experience testing, Git workflow and code review services, and WebSmart (a fine BCD product), which all go nicely with our core PHP expertise. We’re still great at troubleshooting, performance help, DB2 and toolkit connectivity, Zend Server configuration and other core strengths.

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We’ll have a booth at ZendCon, October 18-21, 2016. We hope some of you will stop by and meet the wonderful Seiden Group team.

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Speaking tip

An IBM i colleague today asked me for tips to make his presentations at COMMON and other conferences more effective and helpful.

I told him that I like to arrive a day early, talk to people, gauge the audience’s level of experience with PHP, IBM i, DB2, performance, whatever topics I plan to cover. I ask people what they hope to learn at the conference and from my talks specifically. With that information in mind, I adjust the content, emphasis, and pacing of my talks for that specific group. Such pre-conference socializing also helps attendees become comfortable talking to me, such that they may be more likely to ask questions and participate fully in my talks, which brings them alive for everyone.

Conferences and user events where I’ll be speaking in Fall 2016

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Fundamentals of tuning PHP on IBM i

At today’s free webinar at 12pm EDT, sponsored by Zend, a Rogue Wave Company, I will join Mike Pavlak in sharing tips on optimizing PHP in the IBM i environment. The webinar is being recorded and will be available for replay later. Details here: http://www.zend.com/en/resources/fundamentals-of-tuning-php-on-ibm-i

At Alan Seiden Consulting, we specialize in all aspects of PHP with IBM i, from mentoring, performance help, troubleshooting, DB2 and toolkit, application lifecycle management, and development projects from very small to large and complex. If you have questions about tuning or optimizing PHP or IBM i performance, get in touch on our contact page.

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Video promo for COMMON conference May 15-18, 2016

Join me for the 2016 COMMON Annual Meeting and Exposition, May 15-18, with pre-conference workshops May 14. Don’t miss New Orleans!

Learn about IBM i 7.3, open source languages, security, and more.

Alan will speak about PHP, SQL, performance, and how to relax your neck, back, and shoulders at the keyboard. Also looking forward to spending time with the gang from “Club Seiden.”
https://www.common.org

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WMCPA IBM i conference: March 15-17, 2016

Join me and 27 other speakers at the Wisconsin Midrange Computer Professional Association (WMCPA) spring technical conference, March 15-17, 2016, at the Lake Lawn Resort on the shores of Delavan Lake.

Featured speakers: Alison Butterill, Tim Rowe. Speakers: Robert Andrews, Jim Bainbridge, Aaron Bartell, Stacy Benfield, Larry Bolhuis, David Brault, Chris Bremer, Jim Buck, Tom Cremieux, Gus Delgado, Richard Dolewski, Von Enselman, Byron Franz, Charles Guarino, Scott Klement, Richard Milone, Floyd Del Muro, Greg Patterson, Mike Pavlak, Trevor Perry, Jim Ritchhart, Richard Schoen, Alan Seiden, Grant Smith, Matt Staddler, Paul Tuohy

Details: https://www.wmcpa.org/index.php/conference2016

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Top Ten Reasons to Choose PHP

I’m proud to have written the foreword for BCD’s new eBook, Top 10 Reasons to Choose PHP for IBM i Web Application Development. In this free eBook, author Duncan Kenzie explains why PHP has become the mainstream solution for web and mobile development on IBM i. He also guides RPG programmers toward successful adoption of PHP in their shops.

Thanks to BCD and Zend for sponsoring this eBook. Download it free here: https://www.bcdsoftware.com/lp/websmart-php/php-on-ibm-i.php

To read an interview with me, about PHP and the eBook, by Dan Burger of IT Jungle: http://www.itjungle.com/tfh/tfh020116-story05.html

 

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ZendCon 2015 starts October 19

This year’s ZendCon has a new location—Las Vegas—and more IBM i speakers than ever, including:

  • Tony Cairns (IBM)
  • Massimiliano Cavicchioli (Zend)
  • Jim Oberholtzer (Agile Technology Architects)
  • Mike Pavlak (Zend)
  • Stephanie Rabbani (BCD)
  • Chuk Shirley (Sabel Steel)
  • Shlomo Vanunu (Zend)
  • and myself, Alan Seiden (Alan Seiden Consulting)

Tutorial day, Oct. 19, is recommended at this premier PHP conference. I’ll present “Db2 and PHP in Depth,” a three-hour tutorial of techniques for using IBM i’s native database, which can help make PHP applications more secure, easier to write, and faster. I’ll also present new features of Db2 and PHP’s Db2 interface that were inspired largely by comments and requests of past ZendCon attendees. Special guest Tony Cairns from IBM is expected, too, for a lively discussion about practical PHP development on IBM i. Bring your questions.

Later in the week I’ll present “Create a welcoming development environment on IBM i,” based on my experience leading PHP projects for IBM i, and “Strategic Modernization with PHP,” which shows the possibilities on the IBM i platform and the strengths of various approaches. Expect to hear valuable advice from your colleagues, too.

I’m looking forward to attending talks, talking to sponsors, chatting with many of my blog and newsletter readers, meeting clients, and getting to know Rogue Wave, the company that recently acquired Zend.

Information about ZendCon: http://zendcon.com

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iTalk with Tuohy interview

I recently joined speaker and consultant Paul Touhy for a spontaneous, personal ‘iTalk with Tuohy’ recorded chat, described thus: “Paul Tuohy talks to development guru Alan Seiden about developing in PHP, the PHP for IBM i Toolkit, performance for developers and getting your work-work balance right.”

The free recording is available here: http://www.ibmsystemsmag.com/ibmi/trends/iTALK-WITH-TUOHY/seiden-development-balance

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Slides from today’s talk on leveraging RPG with the PHP Toolkit and XMLSERVICE

I’ve posted the updated slides from a talk I just presented about the PHP for IBM i Toolkit. The talk was given at a free virtual conference presented by the COMMON user group and was sponsored by BCD.

The slides are available on my “past presentations” page.

I’d like to hear how you are using the toolkit. Post comments here.

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IBM i performance tools are for developers, too

At last Friday’s OCEAN conference in Costa Mesa, Calif., IBM’s Dawn May and I presented “The Art of Performance Diagnostics,” showing how we’ve used tools that are free (Performance Data Investigator) and low-cost (Job Watcher) and included with IBM i to identify and resolve performance bottlenecks that would have been difficult using traditional green-screen tools alone.

One audience member said, “Developers should know about these tools! They aren’t just for system administrators.” With these tools and with documentation such as the IBM i Performance FAQ, performance expertise is within reach of developers as well as sysadmins.

How do IBM i performance tools help developers to be more effective? Developers can:

  • Respond to any reported slowdowns by looking at recent performance data. IBM i captures performance statistics transparently, enabling developers or admins to “go back in time” to look at past performance.
  • Even better, identify and resolve problems proactively during testing, rather than waiting for users to report problems.
Speakers Alan Seiden and Dawn May presenting The Art of Performance Diagnostics for IBM i at the OCEAN conference, July 17, 2015. Photo by Matthew Murtha

Alan Seiden and Dawn May presenting The Art of Performance Diagnostics for IBM i at the OCEAN conference, July 17, 2015. Photo by Matthew Murtha

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