teaching young IT certed person about old minis/mainframes

Peter Coghlan cctech at beyondthepale.ie
Thu Nov 20 04:58:32 CST 2014

>A question for the ones that work in the industry and are working with
>old mini and/or mainframes:
>How do you teach a young IT certed person about the old minis/mainframe
>that your department maintains?

I'm not working with minis or mainframes now but I did once.  Some time after,
I had an interesting conversation with a young buck.  His facination was
virtualisation products such as VMWare.  He was surprised and very interested
to hear of VM/370 and what it was capable of decades earlier and even more
surprised to hear that its descendant is in use now for bang up to date
applications yet he had not come across it.

Minis and mainframes might be regarded by someone with a 1GB mobile phone as
obsolete/slow/difficult/irrelevant/restrictive/clunky or whatever but if you
can relate them to something they are interested in their attitudes can change

Another angle is to appeal to their hacker instinct.  Tell them about system
security.  Get them to test it.  I'll bet that having someone take a fresh
approach will turn up security holes that nobody knew about as well as getting
them to teach themselves about the system.  A bit of guidance is required of
course to avoid them doing actual damage if they should stumble into something
lacking the appropriate protection.

Peter Coghlan.

More information about the cctalk mailing list