House of Brick is pleased to announce the hiring of Bob Lindquist, industry veteran and leader in the virtualization of business critical applications (VBCA), as the business development director for the west region.
“Bob was one of the early visionaries in the industry to grasp the importance of virtualizing business critical applications such as Oracle and SQL Server-based systems,” said Jim Ogborn, VP of Client Services at House of Brick. “I am excited that he will bring his vision of virtualization and cloud computing coupled with House of Brick’s industry-leading VBCA services to our customers and partners in the west region.”
House of Brick is leading the industry in virtualizing business critical systems, having provided services to dozens of the Fortune 500 companies, as well as hundreds of other enterprises of all sizes. Service bundles such as the Oracle or SQL Server on VMware Enablement, and the Oracle License Review and Architecture Optimization have helped House of Brick customers save countless millions of dollars while improving high availability, disaster recoverability, and new feature time to market.
“Virtualizing business critical systems, such as those built on top of Oracle DB or MS SQL Server is sometimes an intimidating thing for our customers,” says Nathan Biggs, House of Brick CEO. “This fear can come from not having done this type of virtualization successfully before, and can also come from misunderstandings about performance, licensing, and support from their software vendors. House of Brick knocks down the technical and emotional barriers that our customers face in taking on projects like this, and provides key services for successful implementations.”
In commenting on the hiring of Bob Lindquist, Biggs said “Bob will bring tremendous energy to the growth we are experiencing at House of Brick. With the increased VBCA activity we are seeing in the west, Bob is a welcome and critical addition to our team.”
"In my 25 years as a customer, solution provider, and consultant, I have seen the transformation of IT in all organizations due to enabling technologies like virtualization,” said Bob Lindquist. “VBCA is the next enabler for providing IT-as-a-Service to lines of business. House of Brick is the industry specialist in this space, and I feel privileged to join such a strong team of IT visionaries."
Bob Lindquist immediately assumes business development responsibility for House of Brick’s customers and partners in the western states region, including Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah. Come meet Bob at House of Brick’s Suite at Mandalay Bay during VMware’s Partner Exchange, February 23rd through the 28th in Las Vegas.
For as long as we have been working with VMware to virtualize Oracle workloads, House of Brick has pushed the envelope of what VMware thought was technically possible, and what Oracle thought was prudent for maximizing license revenue. In
1996 , when we took our first customer live in production with Oracle E-Business Suite on VSphere 2.5, we did it because nobody told us that we couldn't or shouldn't. That customer, with thousands of food service outlets in the U.S. was as pleased as could be, and is still running all tiers of their Oracle application stack on VMware. So, the technology at VMware has been more than adequate for generations of product releases to virtualize production-class Oracle workloads, and yet still their reach into the virtualization of business critical applications (VBCA) is weak.
Why is that?
Is VMware ill prepared to sell to anyone in their customer organizations outside of the VM administrators? Is Oracle putting up so many emotional barriers that they are scaring customers into inaction on the VBCA front? What will be the overall impact of this lack of market acceptance?
So, here is House of Brick, caught in the middle of VMware wanting to push hard in the direction of virtualizing business critical applications (VBCA) but not knowing how, and Oracle absolutely knowing how, but pushing back with equal or greater force to prevent it. What should be done?
We advocate for the customer!
As has always been the case since the founding of House of Brick, we advocate for what is best for the customer. That has infuriated our partners from time-to-time, but overall even they are happiest with a happy customer. So in considering whether to put even the most critical Oracle workloads on VMware, what is best for the customer? Here are some thoughts:
- VMware is the best virtualization technology available (period). Even as VMware downplays the position of ESX/VSphere, it is the best platform available (virtual or physical) for running mission critical applications.
- Oracle is arguably the best database platform (albeit not necessarily the least expensive) for running mission critical databases (more on SQL Server in another blog post).
- Anything less than the happy marriage of the two provides the customer a less than optimal solution for their moneymaking systems.
Can’t we all just get along?
Regardless of what Oracle sales people might say, their technology just sings on a VMware virtualized infrastructure. Not only that, but the advantages for high availability, disaster recoverability, optimization of datacenter resources, and reduction in time-to-market make VMware the best platform for Oracle databases and applications.
Oracle will say that VMware is not supported. It is!
Oracle will say you have to license a full cluster, even if there is no chance of a workload hitting certain nodes. You don’t!
Oracle will say that performance will degrade on VMware. It doesn’t!
Oracle says that OVM gives 4x better performance. It won’t!
To my friends at VMware, there is more money to be made than you have thus far by many multiples, when you figure out how to sell to the DBA’s, application owners, and the C-suite. Arm yourselves with the truth. Be sure you have the right ROI formula (hint: it’s different than the ROI formula for virtualizing tier-2 and 3 workloads). Show how they would be crazy not to virtualize on VMware.
To my friends at Oracle, VMware will make your software look good, and your customers will be happy. Don’t be afraid of the truth. You will make more money when it is easier for customers to develop on Oracle technology. VMware can make that happen, and faster. Oracle virtual machine (OVM) is not ready for business critical systems; VMware is.
House of Brick is partners with both Oracle and VMware. They might just be the two best enterprise technology vendors in the whole industry. We are honored with our associations. Now, maybe we can help bring them together.
Posted by Nathan Biggs in Untagged
I hope that you will indulge a personal retrospective in this post. Just moments ago, my daughter looked on her iPhone and gasped as she read the news that Steve Jobs had passed away. For a family as committed to the Apple ecosystem as we are, the announcement took us all by surprise. It was almost like losing a family friend. Of course, I never met Steve Jobs, but his impact on my career has been profound. His passing has caused me to reflect on just how much my career has been intertwined with Apple's iconic visionary.
It was in the spring of 1984 that I first had a glimpse of an Apple Macintosh computer. I was in my senior year of high school, and in the school's inaugural computer science class. My friend, Bryan and I had the opportunity to go to the office where it was being demonstrated. I was not sure what to think. The person doing the demo pushed it as a tool for making banners and other WYSIWYG functions. I fancied myself a programmer, not a banner publisher, and so that function did not initially appeal to me. What was fascinating though was the idea of a mouse and movable pointer. I immediately went to work on programming my Commodore 64 with the joystick pointer to see if I could mimic the functionality.
Bryan and I spent the next two years in missionary service—Bryan in Japan, and I in Korea. We both came back to Arizona to pursue a college education, but the entreprenuerial bug bit both of us. We decided to launch a Japanese/Korean translation service called Trans-Pacific Mediation. This was my first business venture since selling eggs from our chickens door-to-door as a kid. I read about these two college students that had started Apple Computer in California, and just knew that if they could launch something then so could we. Bryan and I decided to focus on hotels in the Phoenix area for selling our translation services. We offered to translate and produce business cards, menus, signs, etc. One of our challenges was finding a computer that could produce print-quality materials in English, Japanese, and Korean. Remembering our first experience with a Mac, we knew that is what we needed. I took $3,000 out of savings, and with a student discount, purchased my first Macintosh computer—a Mac SE with a 20MByte hard drive.
Trans-Pacific Mediation did not last long (my first, but not last hard lesson in the requirement that a business be adequately funded to even have a chance). The business reason for buying the Mac went away, but it was too late...I was hooked. Since that time, over 20 years ago, I have purchased 13 more Macs, ranging from the original iMac, to Mac Minis to PowerBooks, and MacBook Pros. None of the subsequent Macs cost as much as my very first Mac SE. I have never purchased a Windows computer (unless you count the iMac that came with Windows for dual-boot).
I went to Arizona State University and entered the Computer Systems Engineering program. I had two options for my course of study, an Intel path where we would learn the 8086 family of processors, or the Motorola path where we studied the 68xx processors. Of course, as a newly converted Mac addict, I was just sure that the 68000 processor in my Mac SE had to be better than what Intel was doing at the time, so I took the Motorola path. That was not the most popular choice. MS-DOS, and soon to follow versions of Windows were staking out a dominant position in the industry. My trusty Mac was right there with me though. While other students were spending countless hours in the lab, I was able to use my modem to dial in to the school's Vax and do my programming from home. While other students produced their programming code onto green and white folded dot matrix paper, I was publishing mine on a laser printer with headers and footers. I don't know if it got me any better scores (probably not), but I liked the professionalism that the Mac allowed me to convey.
While I was in school at ASU, I was able to pick up an internship at Microchip Technology in Chandler, AZ. They were looking for an engineering student that knew how to use a Macintosh to produce technical documentation. Once I graduated, I got my first job as an engineer at Microchip. My devotion to the Macintosh followed me throughout my tenure at Microchip, even though they were dark times for Apple.
During Steve Jobs' absence from Apple Computer in the 90's, I became an Evangelista (you would have to have been there to know). I followed Guy Kawasaki and the faithful few who knew that Apple had a better platform, and Bill Gates must have done something underhanded in getting Windows out there so prevalently. Guy Kawasaki was Apple's Chief Evangelist. A title that I insisted on for House of Brick's Dave Welch (which he has subsequently adopted emotionally, even if only on paper before).
Steve Jobs, and now Guy Kawasaki were my emotional mentors when it came to technology and entrepreneurship. I moved to Nebraska by connecting to the (new) Internet and finding a job on Careerlink.org. I became an owner of a software development company called Priority Technologies. It was there that I got my first iPod. A click wheel unit with 10GBytes of hard drive space for $500. I have bought countless iPods since then, but none as small in capacity, large in size, or as expensive as the first.
Now as CEO at House of Brick, I have started to make headway in the proliferation of Apple products. We have become avid iPad users, and are now getting more people requesting iPhones. My family has ditched cable in favor of Mac Minis on all our HD TVs, streaming iTunes, Netflix, and Hulu.
Through all these years, at every major decision point that I have encountered in my career, an Apple product has been there seemingly enabling or influencing my decision. I have taken courage as I saw Steve Jobs overcome and face his own career and life challenges. I have fancied myself as a Jobs-like visionary in the limited scope of my own pursuits. Even if I do not have the same visionary outlet as Steve has nurtured in creating the Apple ecosystem, I patterned myself technically, creatively, and entrepreneurially after his determination and drive. I saw how the iCEO revolutionized computing with the iMac, music with iTunes and the iPod, mobile phones with the iPhone, and last but not least, a whole new compute paradigm with the iPad.
The industry will go on in the coming days, weeks, and even years about how Steve Jobs has made such a huge impact on society. Everything they say will be right on about his life-changing vision. For me though, Steve Jobs has had a real and lasting impact on me personally and professionally. I feel a real sense of loss at Steve's passing. Not because I knew him, but because he has been there with me at every step of my career.
I just finished reading Patrick Lencioni's newest book "Getting Naked: A Business Fable About Shedding The Three Fears That Sabotage Client Loyalty" for the third time since its publication. I have long been a fan of Lencioni's business writings. His approach to conveying business principles in the form of parables is a powerful medium for me. As someone who has a hard time processing large amounts of detailed information, I appreciate the imagery that allows me to retain the teachings, and apply them in my personal and business life. The three fears identified by Lencioni include: When I joined House of Brick two years ago, the thing that impressed me most, was the incredible loyalty that our customers and partners demonstrated toward us, and the humble attitude that we took toward our customers. Now, I will not say that everything is always smooth and easy. We have our difficult situations, just like everyone else. I am convinced, however, that if we continue to make our focus about meeting our customers' needs, that we will be more satisfied in our work, our customers will be more happy, and we will ultimately be more successful in all aspects of our business. Thanks for being a friend of House of Brick. Nathan email@example.com
I just finished reading Patrick Lencioni's newest book "Getting Naked: A Business Fable About Shedding The Three Fears That Sabotage Client Loyalty" for the third time since its publication. I have long been a fan of Lencioni's business writings. His approach to conveying business principles in the form of parables is a powerful medium for me. As someone who has a hard time processing large amounts of detailed information, I appreciate the imagery that allows me to retain the teachings, and apply them in my personal and business life.
The three fears identified by Lencioni include:
When I joined House of Brick two years ago, the thing that impressed me most, was the incredible loyalty that our customers and partners demonstrated toward us, and the humble attitude that we took toward our customers. Now, I will not say that everything is always smooth and easy. We have our difficult situations, just like everyone else. I am convinced, however, that if we continue to make our focus about meeting our customers' needs, that we will be more satisfied in our work, our customers will be more happy, and we will ultimately be more successful in all aspects of our business.
Thanks for being a friend of House of Brick.
As CEO, I am committed to sharing our knowledge and experience with our loyal base of customers and partners. One of the ways that we are starting to do that is through regular and consistent blogging of information. As you can see from Dave's blog we are exposed to a lot of what is going on in the industry, and more often than not, we have a (fairly strong) opinion on those things. Our customers and partners have grown to count on the fact that we will give them information that is in their ultimate best interest; even when that opinion may not be popular.
So please join us in this dialog. We will be opening up comments on our blogs, and accounts for our discussion forums soon. Let us know if you are interested in participating.
All the best,