Angus: What does it take?

Last night at a user group, I was given the excuse “It is still named Windows!”, in response to a discussion about the correct branding for the IBM i platform. And, this particular complainer was quite sincere. There seemed to be no purposed for this ‘excuse’, but a tired old platitude that had not quite worn itself down to nothing.

Having thought about it for a while, I realized something important. That complaint is about branding. It is about whether or not IBM should have rebranded. And quite simply, that argument is out of date. IBM ~did~ rebrand our OS to IBM i in 2008 to match their Power Systems branding. It is done, over, fait accompli.

It is time to stop using that excuse. One down, four million to go.

1 Comment

MarkMarch 26th, 2014 at 11:18 am

I agree. It is done. And I don’t mind that they again rebranded too much. I do mind that whomever came up with ‘i’ didn’t consider carefully enough (imo) about what that would do to our ability to use the powerful Internet search engines to their potential to track and locate information about our platform. (And it had to be the idea of someone powerful within IBM or surely it would have been challenged successfully – way too many people applauding that decision) Every document posted today must also include iSeries, AS400 or AS/400 somewhere in their title or document to allow anyone searching for their information to actually find it. Which is crazy because the platform changed to Power but our operating system was OS/400, i5/OS and now just ‘i’? Seemed to me the more likely candidate was i/OS… the only problem was Apple owned iOS. and searches in google with a slash are not that usable – the reason we typically search for as400 instead of AS/400. Think of the nightmare of all the mac search returns we could be searching through if the obvious choice had been made. My suggestion would have been IBMi. I don’t see a big problem with IBMi/OS or IBMIOS either but then I’m not part of their legal department that then have to search worldwide for conflicts and meanings in other languages. Maybe we should have followed Apples’ lead and named it Camel or Buffalo.

So despite the done status of the change, we will have a hard time leaving the previous branding behind. Five years later and we can only recently be able to find documents in Google using IBM i as a part of our search. Despite that capability, there are valuable documents that are older than 2008 that contain techniques that will be difficult to locate unless you search multiple times, once with each of the brandings. I’m exhausted with their choice of ‘i’ and can’t agree with you more about being exhausted with the discussion. I think this will be my last post on the topic.


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