IBM Skills Gateway: Refreshing your technical arsenal!

I have been hearing a lot about the different courses offered on the IBM Skills Gateway so I decided to try one. Since I have been working with BlueMix for a bit I figured it would be easy to go through the BlueMix Essentials course and earn the badge, I squeaked by the test with a 90% (you need an 80% to earn the badge, so make sure you REALLY pay attention as there are only 10 questions).

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I have to say I am pretty impressed with the way the course played out; mixing video, text, and lab content into a seamless straightforward experience. You can stop and start as you will, it will just keep track of where you left off. I got a little impatient with a few videos but that was only because I was familiar with most of the material, however it makes you finish watching each video – so no skipping around! I really like this course because if anything, it teaches you how to setup an application, make code changes locally, and then deploy those changes to the BlueMix cloud. Make sure you before you actually do the lab you watch the lab video. I kept making the mistake of just doing the lab as described and then I was forced to watch a 10-12 minute video of the instructors walking through the lab. It explains how to install the different tools you may need, walks you through all configurations, using the command line Cloud Foundry tools (cf), and using Eclipse as your IDE for your project.

Finding courses is very easy and many are free! You can filter courses by duration, category, product group, and skill level.

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You can take courses that are instructor led or self-paced. Some courses are a combination of reading material and videos, while others may contain hands on labs, or may just be a simple article like An introduction to InfoSphere Streams. If you really like the concept of badges, which in my opinion are similar to certfications, then you can search for them here. The badge system is a partnership with Acclaim and it uses Open Badges which can then be posted to your social profiles, like on LinkedIn.

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I am still waiting for my first badge, I guess some badges could take from 1-2 weeks to get. I would be interested to hear others experience with this process. Meanwhile, I think I might earn a few more badges and beef up my own technical arsenal!

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Tip of the day: How effective is your tweet?

searchThere are a lot of tools out there that help you measure how effective a tweet is doing. Did you know Twitter added a nice analytic package for your tweets? Last year Twitter launched a new page where you can measure the effectiveness and engagement of your tweets. Here I present two options that can help you figure out how well your tweets are doing in your network.

The first option is the new Twitter activity page on the Twitter site itself. Just follow this link (https://analytics.twitter.com) to view your engagement levels. You can gauge three different categories: Tweets, Followers, and Twitter Cards. Here are some screen shots on what you can expect:

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We all start at zero

Had to pass this great video and cause on to everyone. I love Khan Academy and I think its cause is the future of learning. Join the cause today!

You Can Learn Anything!

You can learn anything

Using the Eclipse client for editing BlueMix projects on Git Jazz Hub

In this tip of the day I show how easy it is to setup your IBM BlueMix and Jazz Hub project in the Eclipse client for editing. This will allow you to edit your project off-line and take advantage of the many plugins the Eclipse client has to offer.


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New BlueMix video list on YouTube

For those that are interested in following or subscribing to videos on YouTube about BlueMix I have created a new public list called “BlueMix Videos“.

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Cool game based on MQTT and NodeJS and deployed on Jazzhub, and BlueMix!

Had a very short but cool discussion yesterday on Twitter with Ken Walker and Bryan Boyd about his game based on MQTT and JavaScript. The game is written with NodeJS and Ken deployed it on JazzHub and BlueMix! Check out Ken’s video below.

Great job guys!

Google Chrome Tip – Bookmarking multiple windows

google-chrome-bookmarkI have a lot of bookmarks and many times when I am working on a project or doing some of my own personal things I like to have a “workbench” of tabs open in Google Chrome. I use this both at work and at home. For instance, at work I have many IBM Connections communities I would like to read the news from or contribute to so I have a folder of bookmarks for all the common Communities I contribute to. I also have a folder for other administrative work like travel, expenses, my opportunities, and my field sales reports. This feature really helps me organize my thoughts when working on the particular task by automating the opening of these tabs.

In this video I show how you can bookmark all of your open tabs and then open all of those tabs with a single click.