Angus: Challenging ignorance

Some days ignorance is quite difficult to stomach. Most days it is just sad. Unfortunately, when promoting the IBM i platform, ignorance is quite pervasive. Either someone simply does not know about IBM i on Power, or they continue to live in a past that is already going away. I struggle to understand why someone would want to do harm to the platform, yet continue to spread the same old tired myths about naming.

Take the usual forum conversation. While the IBM i brand is starting to pervade, there are some contributors who remain stuck in the AS/400 cave, and remain stubbornly lodged in using old branding, come hell or high water. Nothing, no sense, no marketing, no pleading, will convince them that they are wrong.

Today’s exchange comes from midrange-L after I was referenced in some branding discussions. In the past, I have been rebuked for encouraging the use of the current branding, so I was careful not to mock the sinners – as it were. My last response was:

“The rebranding is no longer in the equation. IBM have given us the IBM i branding to match their Power brand, and it will be with us for the long term.

Either we, as a community, promote the current and future branding, or we will be left behind in the DP department. And, with all the noise from the MS crowd (and even Unix people), and some of our own community, we need to support this incredible platform for the long term, not its glorious past. The challenge is to stop using arguments that keep us mired in the old names and stuck in old ways of doing things.”

Which elicited this excellence in sheer ignorance:

“Yeah right.  Whatever Trevor, the argument didn’t fly six years ago and it still doesn’t fly today.  Not to make it personal, but I have never seen you on here except to rant about the name, Oh and btw, I was at Micro Center tonight and without opening my mouth — not one, not two but seven people referred to their machine as either a “Mac” or “windows”.  Not Windows XP, Not windows 7 or anything else.  Just windows.

It’s a name, that’s it, nothing more and certainly nothing less.

I guess its time to add a filter to the emails again.”

I laughed at the inanity for quite some time. Even now I am still chuckling. From my last two posts here, I have discovered the name does matter. (The name matters.. and Where are you in your IBM i career?) IBM i is not just a name, but a brand that represents a platform for today and the future. But their ignorance on that is not the only thing that made me chuckle.

If the filter had previously been on, then how would this poster have seen me on midrange-L posting anything, let alone to just “rant about the name“. I guess turning on a filter simply allows the ignorance to continue. I think that is the same as covering your ears when you are a child and don’t want to hear the truth!

It is quite sad that there are people in the community who filter out the future. They do not see how their ignorance has an impact on their own career, or how it impacts those around them who listen to their ignorance. I guess you could say they truly are living in the AS/400 cave. While it is difficult to avoid them, since they troll all the popular forums, they are becoming marginalized. I once thought this was a tragedy, to lose so many talented people from our industry. But, I have come to realize that ignorance kills talent, and leaving them behind in the AS/400 cave is the only humane thing to do.

And no, I could not post this on midrange-L, it would scare the TOGs (Tired Old Grumpys) too much. Wait, they are filtering me… maybe I can!

Leave a comment

Your comment