Tuesday, February 1, 2005

A WebSphere pot o’ gold


Yet another great resource is WebSphere.org. According to the lead-in on the WebSphere.org home page, WebSphere.org is "...the information hub of the Global WebSphere Community comprising, User Groups, Business Partners, IT professionals and business users. It is a forum to communicate experiences, ideas and technical expertise related to the use of WebSphere and related products and issues."

I don't think I can add much to that other than to say that from there, you can join and/or start a local WebSphere User Group, which is one more source of useful WebSphere information. If you can locate a local WebSphere User Group in your area, I'd encourage you to join; if you can't, then I'd encourage you to start one. User Groups are a great way to keep up on the latest and greatest in this rapidly changing environment.

WebSpherePower Magazine

Since you're reading this, you've obviously already located another of the great WebSphere resources in the world, but my list of resources wouldn't be complete if I failed to mention WebSpherePower Magazine, the Power magazine for WebSphere professionals. After all, it's here where you'll find great stuff such as this list of WebSphere resources!

Individual blogs

Aside from commercial and other organized resources available to WebSphere professionals, there's also the vast array of individual contributions to the knowledge base in the form of personal Web logs, or blogs as they've come to be known. There are a number of organizations that host blogs, and a number of other individuals who host their own blogs, but if you're looking for applications development topics, a great place to start is Jroller, the Java-powered blog-hosting site provided by the Java Lobby. Here, you'll find quite a number of Java application developers posting all kinds of useful information related to their experiences in developing applications on any number of platforms, including WebSphere.

Pass it on

And of course, once you've successfully acquired your new knowledge through these resources and put it to good use, the courteous thing to do is to pass it on to the rest of us, so that we can all benefit from your experience. After all, we're all learning, and we'd like to know whatever it is that you know and how it is you did what you did.

How do you do that, you ask? Well, there are quite a number of ways. You can make a presentation at your local WebSphere User Group, start a WebSphere blog and post your experiences for the benefit of others, or develop a tutorial and submit it to developerWorks for inclusion. You can even put together an article and send it in to WebSpherePower Magazine and have it published. Everything you need to know about that particular option can be found on the ZATZ AuthorPower Web site.

However you go about it, the important thing is that you get the information out there to help out those of us who haven't quite figured it all out yet. Even though there are quite a few resources out there, there'll always be room for one more.

Jeff Chilton is a Contributing Editor for DominoPower Magazine and WebSpherePower Magazine, and in his spare time serves as Vice President of Fulfillment for Echo Technology Group, Inc., an IT consulting firm that specializes in enterprise-focused best practices. Visit http://www.teametg.com for more information, or email him at jchilton@teametg.com.