[Beowulf] Oh.. IBM eats Red Hat

John Hearns hearnsj at googlemail.com
Tue Oct 30 14:35:43 PDT 2018

> I just don't think they have been successful at attracting the cream of
the programming world
> for twenty plus years now,
IBM - I am seeking a role as an HPC expert at the moment. Do please contact

Four years ago I was seeking a similar position.
I had a phone interview with the UK manager. I had a phone interview with
the EMEA manager.
I had a phone interview with the worldwide manager.
During the weeks which these took to be set up by HR, a small UK company
scheduled a single face to face interview with me and made a firm offer of
a job.

As I say - IBM - I will still happily work for you. But make me an offer!

On Tue, 30 Oct 2018 at 17:49, Robert G. Brown <rgb at phy.duke.edu> wrote:

> On Tue, 30 Oct 2018, Chuck_Petras at selinc.com wrote:
> > Cringely has some interesting observations...
> >
> > "The deal is a good fit for many reasons explained below. And remember
> Red
> > Hat is just down the road from IBM?s huge operation in Raleigh, NC.
> Slightly backwards.  RH is back on NC State's campus (where it began),
> having moved out of Durham a few years ago.  IBM is in the Research
> Triangle Park, which is a bit closer to Durham (closest) and Chapel Hill
> (second closest) than it is to Raleigh, but is basically in "neutral
> ground" in between, with these three and surrounding suburbs and urbs
> all three acting as bedroom communities for RTP.
> But there is plenty of room in all three corners of the triangle plus
> RTP plus the surrounding countryside for expansion and/or unification.
> The interesting question in my mind is whether or not RH will stay
> inside NCSU at all now that they are bought out.  I could easily see
> them moving into a shiny new building in RTP or out on the east side of
> Durham.  They both draw extensively from the congruence of Duke, UNC,
> NCSU, and NCCU (four Universities within twenty miles of RTP and about
> 25 miles of each other) and the fact that this is a really good place to
> live, with a very high percentage of the population having at least a
> bachelor's degree and a very high percentage having a graduate degree as
> well.  At one point, the Triangle had the largest concentration of MDs
> and PhDs per capita in the world, but that's been diluted by migration
> and changes in the economic profile so that research, medicine and
> education, while huge, are smaller proportions of the overall
> population.
> >
> > "Will Amazon, Google, and Microsoft now run out and buy SUSE, Ubuntu,
> > Apache, etc? Yes.
> >
> > "Will there be a mad rush to create new Linux distros? No. I think that
> boat
> > has already sailed and further Linux branding won?t happen, at least not
> for
> > traditional business reasons.
> Google already has one.  It's called "Android".  Microsoft has been
> flirting with Linux for the first time in forever as every one of their
> efforts to compete with Android and IOS has underwhelmed, if not
> flopped.  At this point Linux actually owns a substantial chunk of the
> desktop, in the form of Android on tablets that have largely replaced or
> augmented actual computers, and is just under Apple in the phone market
> with M$ a joke down near the bottom in both domains.  But Android is
> vulnerable -- lots of people dislike it and dislike the play store and
> all that goes with it and with iOS.  IBM has the resources to actually
> make an OPEN tablet/phone OS if they choose to and are at least as
> likely as M$ is to be able to step into the market and steal away
> mindshare from Android and iOS -- if they couple it to a slick AI
> component, maybe semi-proprietary, they might even jump to the head of
> the line as Alexa and Siri etc leave a great deal to be desired.
> > "These big questions have yet to be answered, of course. Only time will
> > tell. But we?ll shortly begin to see hints. What happens to Red Hat
> > management, for example? There are those who think Red Hat will, in many
> > ways, become the surviving corporate culture here ? that is if Red Hat?s
> Jim
> > Whitehurst gets Ginni Rometty?s IBM CEO job as part of the deal. That?s
> what
> > I am predicting will happen. Ginni is overdue for retirement, this
> > acquisition will not only qualify her for a huge retirement package, it
> will
> > do so in a way that won?t be clearly successful or unsuccessful for
> years to
> > come, so no clawbacks. And yet the market will (eventually) love it, IBM
> > shares will soar, and Ginni will depart looking like a genius.
> >
> > [SNIP]
> >
> > "In the end the C-suite of IBM may be finally admitting to themselves
> what
> > you and I have known for several years ? that their strategic imperatives
> > are not doing as well as they promised. They also know they?ve invested
> way
> > too much in stock repurchases and way too little in the business. So with
> > this Red Hat deal they?ve basically bet the farm to get themselves back
> in
> > the game.
> >
> > "With Whitehurst at the top of IBM, the company will not only have an
> > outsider like Gerstner was, it will have its first CEO ever who won?t be
> > coming with a sales background. This is very good, because IBM will have
> a
> > technical leader finally running the show.
> >
> > "Let?s review:
> >
> > "Ginni Rometty is past the age where IBM likes to retire CEO?s, which is
> 60.
> >
> > "Jim Whitehurst is 51, the age when IBM likes to hire new CEO?s.
> >
> > "I don?t see Whitehurst moving to Armonk, I do see IBM moving to Raleigh.
> I'm not sure about that -- NYC is still the center of the financial
> universe.  I'd love to see it happen, but they don't have to "move",
> they can just create the tech vice-capital of IBM in the park (where
> they already have a strong presence) while still leaving the bookkeepers
> and stock brokers and sales people in Armonk.
> > "I do see Whitehurst as CEO of IBM in six months or less.
> >
> > "The Red Hat team will expand their products into new areas. IBM
> executives
> > will retire in droves because they can?t compete and will resist learning
> > something new.
> That's the interesting possibility.  IBM used to be right up there with
> Bell Labs in their research capabilities and investment.  RH isn't
> really all that creative IMO, but they are arguably one of the two or
> three main poles in the Linux universe, and IT feeds on an enormous
> global bank of very smart people making many small, and some large,
> contributions.  I would bet that Linux absolutely dominates the
> activities of the world's best programmers by numbers if not by talent
> -- even if M$ and/or Apple hires a pile of them, the pile isn't close to
> the number that work on Linux for free or as a paid position.  IBM STILL
> has some very, very smart folks working for them, and I could see a lot
> of synergy in the union, if they don't let corporate wonks divert them
> from their creativity.
>     rgb
> Robert G. Brown                        http://www.phy.duke.edu/~rgb/
> Duke University Dept. of Physics, Box 90305
> Durham, N.C. 27708-0305
> Phone: 1-919-660-2567  Fax: 919-660-2525     email:rgb at phy.duke.edu
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