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I started this on StackOverflow meta, but we decided it needs to be over here as well.

IBM has had a identity problem for their midrange system over the past decade. There are several names for the same system. The tags I see mostly being used now in SF is [as400] and [iseries]. The actual name for the system right now is "IBM i for Power Systems".

I feel we need a standard name for this system so a person can easily find all questions related to this platform.

Here is what I propose:

Main tag:

Synonyms:

  • Just a bump on the above - StackOverflow has synonymed everything to ibm-midrange - stackoverflow.com/questions/tagged/ibm-midrange – dsolimano Aug 2 '11 at 19:27
  • Use the contact link on the bottom of the page and draw their attention to this post. – Mike Wills Aug 2 '11 at 19:49
  • you mean contact the mods? – dsolimano Aug 3 '11 at 18:03
  • "contact us" on the bottom of this page emails team%2bmeta.serverfault AT stackexchange.com and explain what you want and why. That is what I did on StackOverflow. – Mike Wills Aug 3 '11 at 19:17
  • An email has been sent, also added my suggestion as an answer. – dsolimano Aug 5 '11 at 5:06
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As noted in the comments above, SO has gone with ibm-midrange. Perhaps SF should match to avoid intra-network confusion.

  • ok, I did this, but I had to do it in a hurry.. please double check my work! – Jeff Atwood Aug 6 '11 at 2:17
  • @JeffAtwood You're good. – sysadmin1138 Aug 6 '11 at 2:59
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I will have to agree with you that these should all be synonyms (damn IBM for not making up their mind what to call this thing), however as noted on the MSO post I have to also agree that it is much more commonly referred to as an AS/400 than it is an iSeries or an IBM i.

I have to wonder that if these posts are all retagged with [ibm-i] as you propose, whether people looking for support on these systems (who are most likely searching Google using the AS/400 keyword) will miss out on a great support resource because Google spidered the page with the [ibm-i] tag and not the [as400] tag they were probably looking for.

Ultimately, though it might be the right thing to do, I think it may actually harm people looking for support on these systems because they are simply searching for a keyword that search engines will not be indexing on Server Fault.

I know when I want something AS/400 related, I always search Google using a search with AS/400 in the query, because that is what most people call it, and to be honest finds the best/most relevant results.

Like I said, I'm all in favour of synonyming these tags, but I would rather see the [as400] tag as the "base" tag to which the others are synonymed to because of its popularity.

I still call our system an AS/400 because if I call it an iSeries I get some pretty vacant looks - people would think I'd totally flipped if I called it an IBM i!

  • I always search on iSeries, because I know "IBM i" without quotes is worthless for searching. We hashed through this on Stack Overflow. Our understanding is searching on one keyword is like searching on all synonyms. Besides, most questions I see on here usually meantion iSeries or AS/400. – Mike Wills Nov 16 '10 at 14:23
  • as400 should probably be the main tag - It has the most questions in it (18) and is what I've always referred to these systems as (or heard them referred to). – voretaq7 Jun 10 '11 at 15:22
  • Whilst I would probably search for iSeries, I would never be likely to search for IBM Midrange. As as400 has the most questions I would agree that this is the better option. – Sam Cogan Aug 5 '11 at 19:29
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If you condense them all down to one, you'll have to retag them all again in 2 years anyway.

  • When you make them synonyms, you can just add the a new synonym in 2 years and it will automatically associate all of them. – Chris S Dec 1 '10 at 15:36
  • Aha - did not know that. But will it address the issue of searching via Google - do the synonyms also get grabbed by the Google crawler? (Or any other search engine?) – mfinni Dec 1 '10 at 16:01
  • That was kind of my point too about search engines indexing [ibm-i] and not [as400] (which would probably get more hits) although I'm not sure I made that totally clear in my answer :/ – Ben Pilbrow Dec 1 '10 at 21:35

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