Patent #7,627,854 – Graphical Aid for Generating Object Setup Scripts

I discovered today that nearly four years after filing our initial patent paperwork that our US patent was finally issued. A few months back, we received a Chinese patent for the same submission (#ZL200710001513.4).

You can read more about the work that went into this submission and also read the patent itself.

Recently, the tool that inspired this patent was bundled as embedded feature of the IBM InfoSphere Replication Server Version 9.7 that shipped to customers this last June.

Photo of the actual Chinese patent:

Graphical aid for generating object setup scripts (patent pending)

I joined IBM as an information developer intern (co-op) in June of 2005.  Dell Burner, my team lead, was working on a project with our visual designer and user experience engineer to create a quick start visual for setting up WebSphere MQ for use with Q replication. Q replication is a database replication technology that is extremely high performing due to its architecture and infrastructure. The integral piece of making Q replication out perform standard SQL-based replication is that it pushes its instructions over WebSphere MQ message queues.

WebSphere MQ administrators are a whole different audience than DB2 database administrators.  These two different products are like night and day. DB2 database administrators typically don’t know anything about WebSphere MQ and also are not likely allowed to touch the WebSphere MQ configurations.

Q replication was facing a major customer pain point when it came to configuring WebSphere MQ. The DBAs were not skilled in the technologies needed to implement it. In most shops, there were communication and procedural barriers to getting the environment configured. In most cases, the best case scenario for getting just the WebSphere MQ portion of the environment configured was a minimum of 1-2 days. If the DBAs were working in a z/OS shop, that time frame could be even longer.

Of course a best case scenario means all parties involved are well versed in their requirements and can communicate those from DBA to WebSphere MQ admin.

In an effort to ease the learning curve of Q replication, Dell Burner, Daina Pupons-Wickham, Kevin Lau, and Michael Mao undertook an effort to create a diagram based document and supporting instructions for assisting DBAs to create their setup scripts that they would ask the WebSphere MQ admins to run. Continue reading