Midwest Technical Ecosystem Development Key Leaders April 2015 Update: Cloud in Chicago

Welcome to April 2015! With so many students becoming entrepreneurs and universities creating developers, incubators and accelerators the audience receiving this update continues to be academic leaders and I am expanding the audience/participants to include students, entrepreneurs, developers and key industry contacts in our Midwest ecosystem. The Midwest has a broad reach with collaborators and leaders leveraging this update and/or the social media posts and connecting us across the Midwest along with England, Turkey and more.   With that change the content will come from and be shared with contacts in all these areas.   Let’s begin…

IBM and TWITTER: The Perfect Match


Frequently I have received requests for how faculty, entrepreneurs, students and developers asking how they can access twitter data based on IBM’s new relationship with Twitter.   Once they have the data then the question is what resources does IBM have to aid me in analyzing the data. The answer to both questions is the new service in the IBM Bluemix Cloud called IBM Insights for Twitter. With the service you can analysis up to 5 Million tweets at no charge. Those of you following me (@vscarbro) know I have tweeted 454 tweets so 5 million could go a long way.

IBM Academic Initiative Cloud Offering


Faculty and students how do you leverage the above (and the other 100 apps and services in the Bluemix Cloud)?   We now offer the IBM Academic Initiative for Cloud, [link: http://ibm.biz/aiforcloud ] bringing industry standards based cloud and services directly into your classroom. With this offer, you and your students can access IBM’s Bluemix innovation platform at no charge to gain experience creating real world solutions using a combination of the most prominent open-source compute technologies to power your applications.

You can access the Bluemix trial for 12 months to teach and your students can access it for 6 months. Plus, this offer is renewable and no credit card is required.

Get started today:

IBM Cloud Developers Bootcamp Education Day


The teach the teacher training events were well received. Many times however faculty asked can you do the same for students. In June there is going to be a one day IBM Bootcamp Worldwide that anyone can take and get hands on training with the IBM Bluemix Cloud.   Target dates are June 9th, 10th and 11th. There will be a variety of events across the three days. As details become finalized I will get those out to help you plan and share with others.   The main IBM Chicago City Team URL will continue to be updated with the latest information on this as well as my meetup, other meetups we are hosting and additional education and learning opportunities.

University of Arkansas IBM Academic Initiative Conference


If you have used the University of Arkansas Academic Initiative system for access to the Sam’s Club, Tyson Food, SAP datasets or other repositories of real data to help students see what it is like to work with large datasets you may want to consider traveling to the conference coordinated by Dr. David Douglas at the University of Arkansas:

New DataSet Link from Tanya Schlusser

Chia: Chicago Applied Cognitive Analytics Group


Having met Tanya Schlusser at the Chicago Cognitive Computing Meetup we have continued to stay in touch. I must share if you want some one with cloud insight Tanya knows clouds and cognitive and technology. Recently Tanya sent me the above link because she knows how much I collect datasets to share with faculty and students and entrepreneurs to work on real world problems. Based on how much use we have gotten from the City of Chicago Data Portal this is another key tool to help anyone go from idea to build-it to startup.

Any One Can Learn to Code Meetup


HTML/CSS Level #1 Workshop: Let’s make a website!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM

Chicago IBM Innovation Center

71 S. Wacker Dr. 6th Floor, Chicago, IL

All of our meetups are always FREE.   In this Meetup, developer Ryan McMahon will introduce you to the foundations of the modern web: HTML and CSS. He will help you gain a basic understanding of the languages’ functions, and how they are used together to create a website. Starting from the beginning, he will walk you through your first line of HTML code, to a basic but functional website, as well as introduce you to some very valuable resources to help you get started as a Web Designer or Front-end Developer.  Bring your computers, and if you can download a text editor like Sublime Text (http://www.sublimetext.com/3), and/or sign up for a free account on Codepen.io (http://codepen.io/ — trust me, you’ll want an account here even if you don’t end up using it at the workshop!).



The ESCAPE Big Data and Analytics Conference is being held at Robert Morris University Saturday May 2 from 8AM to 4PM with hands on training throughout thought the day. IBM will have 3 sessions throughout the morning and 3 sessions in the afternoon: Predictive Analytics, Big Data/Analytics and Cloud with Analytics.   The conference and the sessions are all sold out. If you are at the event, please do come by and see me at the IBM table.



IBM’s Bluemix Cloud Meetup

  • Wednesday, May 13, 2015

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM

71 S Wacker Dr, Chicago, Il

  • 6th Floor and Bring Photo ID for Building Security
  • In this meetup join us for hands on labs with IBM’s newest cloud environment:   Bluemix.  Bi-weekly technical presenters/instructors will lead labs enabling you to have hands on experience with IBM’s latest cloud and collaborate with others in the cloud in Chicago.  With new services being added continually this will put you in the driver set of the technology and getting hands-on lab experience with the cloud technology.  Below are the details to sign up in advance for the free 30 day trial for everyone to get started now or signup at the meetup to go through the labs. Food will be provided. Please bring your laptop.
  • Want to get started on Bluemix now? https://ibm.biz/bluemixchicago
  • What will you do with Watson? Building the Next Generation of Apps with IBM Watson (and Bluemix…March 18, 2015) https://youtu.be/75NCl21rsl

IBM Global Entrepreneur Program for Cloud Startups Offering


This is good starting point when students ask what can I do next with this project I developed in class. The IBM Global Enterprener Program for Cloud Startup is an good way for students to receive 1K to 10K per month of free cloud services for 1 year. This above link provides all the details needed for student and other entrepreneurs and startups to submit their application to enroll in the program.

April Favorite Tweet

This is my favorite April tweet since it provides you a step by step roadmap to creating an Internet of Things applications with a simulation tool you can use to measure changes in temperature that you control all in less than 30 minutes.

Create your first Internet of Things app in under 30 mins with IBM #Bluemix #IoT! bit.ly/1F5GSYe pic.twitter.com/ld5FSV6W5J

Big Data & Analytics EdCon moves to AMCIS 2015

The Americas Conference for Information Systems (AMCIS) 2015 is being held in Puerto Rico this August. A better time of year for faculty participation and moving EdCon in conjunction with a well established academic conference will make it easier for faculty to travel to AMCIS and take advantage of two key events in one trip.   The call for short position papers closes June 19th.



Let’s continue to use social media (see ids/links below) along with any of the links/tools listed below to share information throughout the month. I will post this update to my blog so more of our extended contacts can leverage this community’s collaboration. With that in mind, let’s finish up with Jim McDonough’s recent comment, “Before Bluemix programming was like a hand saw (you can grind away and eventually you get the job done) but with Bluemix it is like an electric saw (zip and you are done) it’s that quick!”  Visit Data Hub President Jim McDonough (http://www.datahubusa.com/index.php/features/ibm)  who zipped along at the recent Chicago PaaS, Bluemix and Cognitive Computing Meetup.

Below you will find all my contact information, including my cell number for any questions you may have on the above content or for collaboration on a new idea.   Until next month….


Valinda Scarbro Kennedy

IBM Chicago Cloud Academic and Developer Advocate

Email & LinkedIn: vscarbro@us.ibm.com

Mobile/Text: 630-747-8807

Twitter: @vscarbro

Blog: https://vscarbro.wordpress.com/

IBM Chicago Cloud (Free 30 days): https://ibm.biz/bluemixchicago

IBM Chicago Entrepreneur Cloud Startup (Free 1K-10K/month): ibm.biz/chicagostartups


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