I'm largely in agreement with Brian and Martin, although I can think of
some more country-specific differences, in no particular order:

1. Encryption still has some "odd" national boundaries.

2. Network reach and quality still vary a lot, and thus branch/channel
architectures vary to some extent. Some of the countries in Africa, for
example, are struggling with network infrastructure.

3. The geographic risks are different when considering, and reconsidering,
disaster recovery. Many clients in Japan, for example, do not view two data
centers separated by a "metro" distance to be adequate, primarily because
of earthquake risks.

4. I recall a couple clients asking if IBM Z machines could be placed on
moving (or at least movable) vehicles. Short answer: yes. You might be able
to guess what they were thinking. It was/is logical.

5. There are a few internationally embargoed countries.

6. There are some brand new mainframe countries from time to time.

7. Each country has a unique history, culture, business climate, and other
factors that have some impact on the IT sector and talent development.

8. Regulations vary, and some regulations can have significant impact on
IT. Europe's GDPR initiative is a recent, topical example.

9. Some countries have "odd" deadlines that might, for example, have some
"odd" effects on batch workload patterns.

10. Some countries have crazy high peaks that can influence IT, such as
Black Friday for the U.S. retail industry and Lunar New Year in many

11. Forced antitrust-related splits, forced mergers (e.g. "bad bank"
liquidations), Brexit, and other such phenomena can impact IT in
interesting ways.

12. A few countries use different calendars, and there are sometimes
timezone changes and such oddities that have mainframe impact, at least if
you run your mainframe on local time instead of UTC. (Not necessarily a
good idea.)

13. Currency changes can have mainframe impact, as the introduction of the
euro did many years ago.

Timothy Sipples
IT Architect Executive, Industry Solutions, IBM z Systems, AP/GCG/MEA
E-Mail: sipp...@sg.ibm.com

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