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Travel continues to be the great educator

Pyalla Technologies


Sydney skyline always rewards travellers

As you read this update Margo and I will have returned to our home base in Windsor, Colorado. For much of November we have been on the road. Well not so much that of pavement as the open sea having elected to sail to Australia that followed a repositioning course across the Pacific. There is nothing quite like sailing to another continent to fully appreciate the scale of the separation that exists between North America and the Antipodes. It was a time where books and journals were devoured and where conversations with many interesting fellow shipmates occurred.

When you consider just how many HPE NonStop conferences and events have been held this year I have been impressed by the willingness of the NonStop community to show up no matter the inconvenience that this might represent. Likewise, it’s hard not to be impressed by just how intent if not persistent the NonStop community is on capitalizing on the benefits from participating in such gatherings. Next year NonStop will be celebrating its fiftieth anniversary. Who knew?

It is against this background of upcoming anniversaries, and not to put too fine a point on it but in 2024 it will not be just Tandem celebrating the passage of a milestone as Margo and I will have a celebration of our own to enjoy, that thoughts turned to the passage of time. And with time passing, the experiences enjoyed and the memories retained. Working up a storyline for a former business colleague and now good friend, I found myself reading Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift. Perhaps that was influenced by coming across the movie of the same name while channel surfing one night. What resonated so well with me was Swift writing:

“My hours of leisure I spent in reading the best authors, ancient and modern, being always provided with a good number of books; and when I was ashore, in observing the manners and dispositions of the people, as well as learning their language; wherein I had a great facility, by the strength of my memory.”

While I cannot claim to have read works by the best of authors I did spend time observing those around me whether onboard the ship or settled in nearby on land passing the hours over a steaming cup of coffee. As for having a great facility that is the strength of my memory, I will leave that to others to judge. However, in my defense, it is the journey and rarely the destination that continues to add to the memories accumulated over a lifetime. And my fondness for NonStop is firmly anchored in memories of conferences and events dating back to the late 1980s.

It was in 1987 that I first heard about ITUG, an event that year I recall was held in New Orleans. However, it would not be until 1992 that I was given the opportunity to travel to Nice, France, to see for myself all that ITUG events represented. Customers, consultants, vendors, technologists – anyone with an interest in what was then Tandem Computers – gathered with a common purpose and that being to share experiences gained from deploying Tandem. And this spirit of retelling shared memories continues to this day. Nowhere is there a better forum for hearing about what delivers and where the risk / reward ratio favors further investigation. There are just too many voices being raised for anyone not to hear about something that excites the NonStop community.

There is one drawback to travelling. I recalled when a former colleague of mine with whom I worked closely talked of how Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones when asked about how long he could continue touring with the group, told the interviewer of how “Every man desires to live long, but no man wishes to be old.” This again was a reference back to Swift and Gulliver’s Travels. And of course, it might as well be bracketed with a subsequent quote, “A wife should be always a reasonable and agreeable companion, because she cannot always be young.” Such insightfulness of Swift was a reminder that for Margo and me there is fortunately a reasonable and shared interest in continued learning through travel even as being conscious of the ultimate price being paid for years on the road.

The NonStop community will continue to travel in 2024 and already our calendars are filling out rather more quickly than anticipated. Yes, travel is the great educator as it also an enjoyable reminder that the presence of NonStop across many industry verticals is still an observable fact. Whereas modernization and the ease of development together with the willingness to explore porting opportunities given the support of tools, services and APIs that make this easier to contemplate than ever before just as the latest developments in support of databases and yes, virtualization, add even greater appeal for running mission critical applications on NonStop, we are all still learning, observing and creating new memories. Something that was hard to miss in the storytelling of the past two months.

My coverage of conferences and events of 2023 became the focus of many of the posts of this most recent period and while this is the last issue of NonStop Insider for 2023 with much to look forward to for 2024, you can read them all by simply following the links below.

Real Time View column (The Connection):

November – December, 2023
Festivities that remind us of our heritage

And look for an introduction with opening paragraph elsewhere in this publication.

Real Time View blog:

October 12, 2023
Will lightning strike twice For HPE NonStop

November 17, 2023
HPE NonStop: community sees shadows shortening


October 22, 2023
We faced a lot in 2023, but it was the faces we remember most.

November 5, 2023
When life throws you a curve

Follow me on LinkedIn and look for my regular commentaries on the industry, HPE NonStop and the community as I am now posting on a more regular basis.

Richard Buckle
Cofounder and CEO
Pyalla Technologies, LLC.