50 Years of the IBM Mainframe: What We’ve Learned (Part 2)

Last week, we celebrated the birthday of the which, come to think of it, is just slightly younger than I am at 50. The (as it’s currently called) continues to be an incredibly and surprisingly successful platform for because it was able to evolve. Tech-nologies that didn’t evolve failed. In fact, the main lesson to remember is that in the tech-nology industry, there is one uncontestable rule: evolve rapidly or die.

Mid-range computers, the baby brothers to the mainframe, didn’t make it; BetaMax and VHS didn’t make it; modems didn’t make it, Token-Ring didn’t make it, DOS didn’t make it, Commodore and Atari computers didn’t make it, the Newton didn’t make it, Network Oper-ating Systems (Netware) didn’t make it, Palm didn’t make it. Even a once unbeatable mega company—RCA— didn’t make it.

The mainframe almost didn’t make it but mainly due to mistakes made, and then correct-ed, by IBM. Ironically, Sun Microsystems, the company that most aggressively tried to kill the mainframe, didn’t make it because management ignored or forgot that main lesson and didn’t evolve fast enough.

 For more information, CLICK HERE

NOTE: This column was originally published in the .

Leave a Reply