Recording Available for Webinar: Continuous Delivery for a Highly Available Kubernetes Application

Our partners LiveArea and Rackspace did an awesome demonstration of the power of using Kubernetes with WebSphere Commerce v9. The demo shows how the configured Kubernetes orchestrator automatically scales up new pods when work load breaches their configured point. Take some time and watch this recording of a webinar I participated in with the LiveArea and Rackspace team.

Update: I uploaded the webinar to YouTube, so now it’s available to view there. Click the link below.

Click here to view




Webinar: Continuous Delivery for a Highly Available Kubernetes Application

Title: Continuous Delivery for a Highly Available Kubernetes Application

Date: Thursday, May 03, 2018

Time: 11:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

Duration: 1 hour

Deploying an updated container to a cluster is easy – a command or two at the command line and you’re done.

But what about ….

  • Moving collections of containers?
  • To multiple clusters?
  • In multiple clouds?
  • Attached to an Enterprise Service Bus?
  • Orchestrated for high availability?

A major transportation e-commerce site has moved its rating engine to the cloud. They use two public cloud providers, with IBM Cloud Private as a consistent Kubernetes platform in each. The team needs to innovate fast while keeping enough control to protect the business and pass audit.

Join IBM Distinguished Engineer Paul Bahrs and Eric Minick for an examination of orchestrated updates when real-world challenges demand more than simple scripts at the command line.



30 years of OO programming – My reply to a critic

I read an interesting article over on Medium that is getting a lot of views and even more comments. The article is “Goodbye, Object Oriented Programming“. It goes through and attempts to debunk the many aspects of “object oriented programming”, from inheritance to polymorphism, the author hits them all. There is only one problem, every example you show has a proper object oriented solution for it. As Morpheu5 also explains in his response:

I’m just going to say that you sound like any of the many frustrated programmers — even long-time, very experienced programmers—who probably don’t have time, will, or resources to take steps back and evaluate the situation – link

This response is spot on. Every single OO language from Ada, C++, Java, C#, to Swift and many more, all have “pitfalls” and they all have their strengths.

Commodore Vic 20

My programming started in the early eighties with Assembler and BASIC. I then soon graduated to C and then C++. I wrote a lot of C++ without really knowing object oriented programming, read a lot of books but still fell into the many traps the author speaks about above. Then, I went to school for the military and learned Ada. This is where I was actually taught Object Oriented Programming but most of all I was taught the basics of OO along with Design Patterns. In the early 90’s I bought one of the most useful books I have ever bought for programmers – “Design Patterns: Elements of Reusable Object-Oriented Software“. It changed the way I coded and most of all it changed the way I thought when addressing problems. Morpheu5 hit the nail on the head, designing good Object Oriented classes is a skill and some even call it an art.  A colleague of mine was really big on patterns, Chuck, and he pretty much shot down anyone’s code (including mine and he reported to me) that was in his words “crap” if it didn’t fit nicely into an established pattern or used OO properly. You have to have this discipline or at least someone on the team that is a “code Nazi”.

Structural patterns (essentially most of the problems in the original article were structural problems) like Decorator or Facade could easily solve some of those or even the Bridge pattern.

If you want to see really good OO, you most likely have to look no further than the language itself, Generics for instance have transformed the way we code:


while ( iterator.hasNext() ) {
System.out.println(“value= ” +;


for name in names {
print(“Hello, \(name)!”)


for label in labels:
if label in path:
return label

And those are just Loops, and if you don’t think that is OO, try doing that in C or Assembler and have it still be “generic”. I will end with, it takes time to learn Object Oriented Programming but it takes even more to be good at it. Use the well established patterns in whatever language you use and you will ultimately reap the benefits of a good OO design.

This post was originally posted on


Watson Commerce User Groups comes to you!

Starting May 1st, we will be hosting free user group sessions where you can collaborate with subject matter experts and other clients about Watson Commerce. My colleague and SME, John Beechen, is running our user group program throughout North America from May through August. Click the tile below to see the cities and dates for your location.

Join us for a User Group to meet with other clients using offerings such as Order Management, Omnichannel Commerce and Digital Experience.

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Cognitive Genie by SapientRazorfish

Pretty slick demonstration of SapientRazorfish’s Cognitive Genie hosted on the IBM Watson Commerce starter store Aurora. Check out the short video below or read more about what SapientRazorfish can do with AI here.

Cognitive Genie is a shopping assistant based on Watson Discovery Service that you can speak to with natural language. Some cool things they have taught the Cognitive Genie to do:

  • Suggest products based on passed purchasing history
  • Multiple choice options (product list filtering) in the live chat
  • Control the product display from the Cognitive Genie
  • Return policies support and answers
  • Get order status
  • Emotion and tone analysis with voice input (Speech to Text)
  • Automatic call transfer
  • In store GEO specific offers for when customers visit store locations.

Only 31% report consistently positive omni-channel experiences

According to a Forrester Consulting report. You can also read the new report here: Retailers Are Starting To Reap The Rewards Of Omnichannel Commerce.

And that is why IBM Watson Customer Engagement is leading the way with our first class set of solutions for Omni-Channel.


Watson Studio is changing how companies use AI

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The black box of teaching computers AI is now in the form of an open platform called Watson Studio. From Jupyter notebooks where you can run code that processes your data, then view the results inline, to a visual modeler where you can connect nodes to build a flow to explore your data and train machine learning models, Watson Studio let’s the average person be a teacher to Watson. As described in this article on IT World, “IBM wants to open up the deep learning expertise bottleneck“, this will open up a whole new area for technical practitioners to dive into. While these applications on Watson Studio are pretty simple to get started with, it will take practice and discipline (just like any other technology) to do it right.

The Jupyter Notebook is an open-source web application that allows you to create and share documents that contain live code, equations, visualizations and narrative text. –link

As a pet project, I have been playing with Watson Studio; as you may have noticed with my Baseball Card project over on CodeByLarry. Being able to teach Watson about your domain is critical to the future of AI. I am seeing more and more the need for industry or vertical experts needing to be able to take their years of experience and translate it into a format Watson can understand. Watson Studio let’s you do this. No longer will Watson or any other AI platform be a black box. They will be driven by tools for subject matter experts to teach AI systems; some will include a bit of code and others will simply be like using Microsoft Word or Excel.

We may not be entirely there yet but you can see we are getting closer and closer. With tools like Watson Studio you don’t have to be a PhD in AI to learn or get started teaching Watson. If you want to dive into the deep, check out some of the articles on Watson Studio, for instance this is a good starter: Get started with IBM Watson Machine Learning and AI.

At the very least, I see many of the products that incorporate AI into them including “tools” to let companies extend the AI capabilities of the core product. This will allow companies to develop “competitive advantages” over other companies in their industry. Until now, this has always been a question from business leaders – “If I use this system, how will it benefit me over my competition”. Of course the immediate question is you will have it first, but what happens when everyone has it? Tools like Watson Studio are going to be critical for companies to be able to have the competitive advantage in their industry. Their company knowledge and their SME’s will once again be the differentiators for them.