General discussion


Which vendors could provide the best "special guests" for the TR forums?

By Beth Blakely ·
Not so long ago, we provided TR members with direct access to an Intel expert in this discussion:

We'd like to offer similar discussions in the future, but we want to be sure that the vendors we choose are ones that you really want to talk to.

What vendors would you like to have direct access to in the TR forums? Let's think beyond Microsoft here... Would you like to hear from Intel, Cisco, Sophos? Small companies? Large companies?

Give us your thoughts and we'll do our best to make it happen.

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Beyond MS

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Which vendors could provi ...

Get someone from Gartner, we love them here.

On a more serious note, someone from PostGreSQL would be interesting.

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I already have my list, and so do the readers

I agree with Tony, PostreSQL would be good.

I already wrote a blog about this, with some great reader feedback:


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Not quite the same question...

by Beth Blakely In reply to I already have my list, a ...

Thanks, Justin. That's a great starting point. However, chances are slim that we could get any of those <i>specific</i> people to join the forums.

Our goal is to get someone "in the know" from certain companies. These may not be names you know, but they'll hopefully be folks who can answer questions members have about particular technologies.

Keep your suggestions coming, folks!

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A few suggestions then

Beth -

Point well taken (I bet we could get Larry Wall anyways ). Here are some guidelines that I think might be helpful:

* The person should be knowledgable about not just their company's products, but the industry and the in-depth details as to what goes into making their products. Let's say we had someone from Cisco. We don't need them to tell us what cool features are in a router, it would be much more interesting if they told us how those features can *truly* help is.

* No marketese whatsoever. No links to marketing brochures. Straight up, in their own words information.

* The person should understand the subtle intracacies of online forum use.

* The person should be responsive; probably 25% or so of the the posts in the thread should be from them.

* The person should be as candid as possible. Let's find out some goodies, not get a retread of last week's news or press releases.

* Someone who can really "talk shop." Like if I thought out some psuedocode or ask about the details of a register in hardware, they know what I am talking about.

I know, these are all things that we won't really find out about until they actually start doing it, but it should be clear to whoever ends up with this that it will be a serious commitment of time and energy on their part. I know that for myself, I can spent 1 - 2 hours a day reading and responding to reader comments to one of my blog posts if it is hot. Whoever we get should be prepared to do the same.

In terms of what companies I would like to hear from... you know, if Microsoft could give us someone really interesting, like one of their Cambridge Researchers, that would be awesome. I know, I know, Microsoft, blah blah blah. but guess what folks? Ever look into the Microsoft Research people? They are geekier than most geeks. Real geek's geeks, if you know what I mean. Microsoft is just about the only software company out there doing pure R&amp into stuff. And Sun. That's what I would love to be talking to, a top level R&amp person from Microsoft or Sun. I would say IBM, but they stopped doing a lot of their cool stuff on the software side. Maybe one of their CPU folks, particularly someone who worked on the PS3 or XBox 360, or the quad core CPUs.


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Anybody from the Ubuntu Linux project

by Jay Garmon Contributor In reply to Which vendors could provi ...

This consumer-level Linux distro has been getting a great deal of buzz, and I've got it running on an old laptop. I'd love to hear from someone high up in the project development team.

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by jck In reply to Anybody from the Ubuntu L ...

Get people out of the MS mainstream...i.e.- people who don't push MS like a religion.

I agree with Jay. Someone from Ubuntu would be great. I have Kubuntu dual-booting on my new high-end PC...and as soon as the network card works...I'm getting Cedega and trying to get games running too.

Linux is my thrust right now...when I'm not at work or doing things for family.

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I agree with Justin and Jay. A couple of others

by Tig2 In reply to Which vendors could provi ...

On Project Management- I would love to hear from anyone using Agile methodology. I would also like to hear a knowledgeable discussion of its highest and best application- where does it shine, where it doesn't do the trick.

On Compliance and Governance- What is the impact of legislation in the IT area. Where can IT be more proactive in helping to transform business process to conform more fully. What kinds of things do we need to be watching for, going forward.

On the Enterprise OS- What are the real ramifications of the Novell/Microsoft partnership? How about the Oracle direction? What does business need to know before considering a move to a Linux environment?

On the partnership between Business and IT- What new skills does business expect their IT partners to develop? How do we improve the relationship? What are the expectations? We know that business wants IT to be able to better speak the language of business, how does IT prove themselves equal to that challenge?

On Future Tripping- What does the future of IT look like in 5 years? 10 years? What technology is considered to be "disruptive"?

That is about all I can think of just now. I think that TR represents a wide range of technology interests and virtually any good speaker whose primary concentration is the subject and not necessarily the product will be well received.

Appreciate the opportunity for input!

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How about

by DanLM In reply to Which vendors could provi ...

Oracle and MySql for database's.

Apache just because so many people use it.

Vendors that sell server hardware. What they for see in the future both current and future. What they see as the operating system of choice from their clients standpoint.

I was thinking from a programmers standpoint, it would be nice to have someone from say Sun(java) or Visual(MS). Someone from perl, when the heck is 6.0 coming out.

I don't know any networking vendors, but I see there are a lot of network people here. They might appreciate that.

We have been banging the day lights out of virus software companies. With the new trends in virus's and other things. It would be nice to be able to talk to some of their folks. Ie, blacklists.... Vista, how will you for see that working.


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by Jaqui In reply to How about

want I should ask an active member of the apache dev team who is also an active member of the apache support email list to contact Beth?
I have his name and email :)

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by Beth Blakely In reply to Apache?

Yes, Jaqui, that'd be great. I'm beth.blakely at, or he/she can contact me via peer mail on the site.


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