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IBM President and CEO Sam Palmisano speaks about IBM and Barack Obama

Friday, September 18, 2009

Comment by James - Editor of  'Barack Obama and the White House' Blog

Some people ask me why I work for IBM. I've had many other opportunities in my career in the computer field to move on to what other people would consider bigger and better challenges. In the present time of my life, along with my challenging career with IBM, I've been an employee with Big Blue now for 15 years, and my job as an engineer to keep IBM mainframe computers is very challenging, and at no time in my career, have I ever was thinking that I would loose my job with IBM. Don't get me wrong, IBM is a big company that experiences cutbacks in the work force from time to time just like other big companies, but IBM works with their employees to help find advancement positions whenever an employee is qualified, regardless of the economic pressure that causes companies like IBM to cut back.
In a communication email today from the President and CEO Sam Palmasomo, IBM received an award from President Barack Obama. The 2008 National Medal of Technology and Innovation for the Blue Gene supercomputer in one of the highest honors bestowed for technological achievement.
Read the following letter as it was written from the President and CEO of IBM himself, Sam Palmisano.


Dear IBMer,

It is with great pleasure that I tell you that U.S. President Barack Obama has announced that IBM has been awarded the 2008 National Medal of Technology and Innovation for the invention of the Blue Gene supercomputer.  This is the highest honor for technological achievement bestowed by the President on America's leading innovators – and today marks the ninth time IBM has won it.

IBM announced its plans to build Blue Gene in December 1999.  In September 2004, an IBM Blue Gene at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California became the world’s most powerful supercomputer.  Blue Gene held that title for four years, until it was surpassed last year by another IBM supercomputer, codenamed Roadrunner.

The invention of Blue Gene was a great accomplishment in itself – but what really made it special was all the innovation that it has spawned, enabling significant advances in health care, energy exploration, astronomy, modeling and simulation, and many other fields.  The speed and power of Blue Gene and our other high-performance systems also serve as a springboard for our leadership in business analytics and optimization.

Seen in that broad perspective, it’s fair to say that all of IBM’s key business lines – hardware, software and services, and the researchers who conceived and invented Blue Gene – along with IBMers everywhere, can share in this honor and recognition.  It adds another proud chapter to our company’s unmatched history of innovation.

Sam Palmisano
Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer




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