The news and changes of 2008 lay behind us today, even though the year isn't over just yet. But in the quiet week between Christmas and New Year's, let's look at the Top Stories of 2008 to see where your community has traveled. In a few days we'll take a stab at where the 3000 arrow will be headed for 2009.
Let's break this down into three important aspects of community events: Migration, Homesteading and the year's News Outta HP. No matter what your strategy and plans for this year, one or all of these areas held significant developments for 3000 owners, partners and advocates. We'll look over the top six events in each area.
Migration seems the best place to start our review, since it offers more change than either homesteading or HP news. Right at the top of the year's list is the pace of migrations, which maintained its moderation despite HP's end of the year deadlines.
1. Migrations stretched 2006 deadlines, we learned this year, as companies which believed their exits would be finished by '06 found themselves still working on their projects. Even more delay on the migration march took place once the economy hit the brakes. The companies we surveyed identified success with migration from the 3000 to Unix platforms and Windows. But some were hung up waiting on replacement software.
2. Software providers counted on migration business to help support their homesteading stability. From our Q&A interview with MB Foster founder Birket Foster, to the landscape described by Bill Miller of Genesis Total Solutions, to the mix of migration and homestead revenues at STR Software, many companies made their migration efforts a backstop for customers taking a long-term strategy toward transition.
3. Migration companies added support for existing MPE apps to their offerings, especially at Speedware. A deep knowledge of HP 3000 technology was even more important than experience with the target environment, the vendor added while it reported on the success and pace of migration business.
4. Independent vendors kept offering extension technology choices for 3000 sites making a transition. Micro Focus pumped up COBOL with support of Microsoft's Azure Cloud computing and standards support in the year. Eloquence kept turning up in successful migrations where IMAGE compatibility was vital, and the database suite added new features in an 8.0 release. IMAGE and COBOL remain the standard technologies which must be replicated in a many migrations.
5. Migrating sites moved beyond HP-UX, reporting more contact with Windows or non-HP *nix platforms. Windows experts are easier to find than HP's Unix veterans and usually cost less to retain. Oracle and Suprtool tended to steer the community toward HP-UX, but .NET potential and the omnipresence of Windows in the enterprise — and the value in Linux — kept HP-UX migrations in a slight minority.
6. HP user groups consolidated into an alliance called Connect, seeking an impact by gathering in greater numbers of members. Connect served up an online social networking tool to promote the learning around 3000 alternatives such as Unix and Windows. Connect put up its first European conference in November, even while the outlook for in-person meetings grew darker.
Tomorrow we'll look over the top six homesteading stories for 2008, some of which address similar trends as migration developments. The 3000 community has feet placed in both strategies as this year is ending.