Thursday Oct 23, 2008

UC2009 proposals, wow! A near miss

OK. I was exceedingly optimistic, but not too much. I said that we may get enough submissions by the end of the regular CfP, and I was almost right. At midnight of October 22nd, we got 284 submissions, which is about 100 proposals more than last year (before extending), but not as much as we got after the extension.

Well done, MySQL Community!

But since we are hard to please, we want to have at least the same number of proposals that we had last year (I am sure we'll get more!), and so we are extending for two weeks. You have time until November 5th to submit a proposal.

What's missing?

Surprisingly, participation from other Sun communities is low. Solaris, Java, NetBeans, Glassfish, OpenOffice have either a token representation or are just silent. I know that there has been much going on between MySQL and these communities, and thus I am surprised to find so little.

Do you have a good technical MySQL presentation about one of the above topics? Then show us!

Remember that the theme of the conference is Innovation Everywhere. Anything technical and innovative about MySQL will be well received.

Monday Oct 20, 2008

Open source in the enterprise - Theory and practice

On Saturday, October 25th, I will be speaking at a Linux Day event in Sassari, about 200 Km from my hometown.

The Linux Day is a global event in Italy. At a given date, all participating towns host a Linux gathering, which could be a conference, a workshop, an install fest, or all of the above.

I am speaking at the Linux Day in Sassari, on the subject of Open Source in the enterprise. Theory and practice. It will be a talk on what enterprises should do with open source, to improve individual and team work, and what individuals can do to work better in an open enterprise.

linux Day

As you see from this map, the event is quite popular in Italy. Every spring, Linux groups around Italy start discussing what they should organize the following fall. And you see every year more organization, more creativity, enthusiasm, and growing attendance.

If you are in Italy on October 25th, attending a Linux Day is a rewarding experience for every open source lover.

Friday Oct 17, 2008

MySQL Users Conference and Expo 2009 : CfP -5 days!

Still 5 days until the end of the call for participation.

Hurry up! The deadline is October 22, 2008.

Yes. I know what you are thinking. Every year it's hurry hurry and then they extend at the last minute.

Probably so. Or maybe not. After my last reminder, the number and the quality of submissions has improved. And we may manage to get what we want without extensions. If that happens, your only chance for a podium is to submit before October 22nd.

If we get enough good submissions by them, we won't extend. Meaning that if you were counting on an extension to send your proposal, it may be too late.

Of course, if we find out that on the 22nd, laziness was more influential than worry and we don't have as much choice as we expect, we will extend. But don't count on that. Too many ifs.

The 22nd is next Wednesday!

Saturday Oct 04, 2008

MySQL UC2009 - Little innovation so far

MySQL Community, I am disappointed.

Innovation Everywhere is the theme of the Users Conference and Expo 2009, and yet, in the proposals that I have received so far I have seen very little innovation. Few daring technical proposals. Few accounts of truly novel exploits.

Instead, I've seen very similar topics to past years, without the spark of experimentation that we look for as an extra spice for the year where the topic is Innovation.

If I look at Planet MySQL, I see plenty of movement. New projects, new releases of old projects, people trying exciting technologies, others combining old technologies with new platforms. And yet, some of the people who are posting these exciting news are proposing the same old story.

Now, I don't mean to say that everyone has to propose something extremely new, but I can't believe that all the innovation going around in blogging and mailing lists is going to be kept in your drawers.

And innovation does not mean invention. It's time to see accounts of early adoption of MySQL 5.1 in production. As you have seen in our Use Case competition articles, there are some brave souls who are using the new release with satisfaction. It's time to show some concrete innovation with facts. This is the conference for MySQL users, by users. It's your conference, where you come to see cool things created by other users, and you should be itching to tell the world the cool things you have done. It's time to show off.

It's time for innovation. Don't be shy. Please submit a cool proposal.

Oh, by the way. Innovation, yes, but not vaporware, please. If you have something advanced to show, you will make the whole voting committee happy, but please show the code. Have a project that will shake the foundations of the database business? Great! But add a link to a site where we can see and touch your new creature. When you show off, you may as well start with your proposal.

Sunday Sep 28, 2008

MySQL Users Conference and Expo 2009 - Call for participation is still open!

MySQL Users Conference and Expo 2009

The call for participation for the MySQL Users Conference and Expo 2009 has been open for a month, and it will last for a few weeks more.

The CfP is open until October 22nd, 2008. The theme for the conference is Innovation Everywhere. If you have something innovative in mind and want to submit a proposal, hurry up!

Before you submit, make sure you read the guidelines. That will help you making a better proposal, with more chances of being accepted.

Friday Sep 19, 2008

A bunch of MySQL/Sun engineers at Software Freedom Day

About 250 MySQL/Sun engineers are meeting in Riga, Latvia, for the annual internal MySQL Developers Meeting. 250 sounds like a large number. And a group picture is quite impressive.

Software Freedom Day Today is Software Freedom Day, which is organized at the local university, and includes talks by Mark Callaghan (Google), Mårten Mickos (MySQL), Domas Mituzas (Wikimedia Foundation).

The full program also mentions free beer, which is an irresistible combination!

Thursday Sep 18, 2008

Marten Mickos at the Software Freedom Day in Riga, Latvia

Mårten Mickos, SVP of Sun Database Group, will speak on MySQL as the platform for the web economy at the Software Freedom Day at the University of Latvia.

The program of the event includes sessions on several open source matters, and a practical workshop on MySQL performance tuning.

Marten Mickos

Tuesday Sep 16, 2008

Workshop and prize at Software Freedom Day

During MySQL/Sun developers meeting in Riga, Latvia, we will celebrate the Software Freedom Day in cooperation with the University of Latvia and other organizations.

One of the events taking place will be a workshop on MySQL optimization, held at the Linux Center computer lab at the University, under the supervision of Jay Pipes, one of the major experts in MySQL performance tuning.

The best performer at the workshop will be awarded a very appropriate prize. A copy of High Performance MySQL, second edition. Registrations for the workshop hare handled by the Linux Center.

During the workshop, there will be practical exercises of performance tuning, covering best practices and advanced features of MySQL.

Wednesday Sep 03, 2008

Sheeri and the MySQL Camp

If you have attended the latest two MySQL Users Conference and Expo, you will know Sheeri. She was awarded for two years in a row community contributor of the year. And she is seriously determined to see someone else on stage next year. That's why she has been pushing other people toward the community scenes, paving the way for other contributors to surface.

But, you know, Sheeri is really good, and we have been trying to hire her, without much success. So we decided that since she is such a great catalyst, we should let her run part of the show. Embedded in the next MySQL Users Conference and Expo, there will be a MySQLCamp, of which she will be fully in charge.

The Camp will be a place for the community, organized by the community, with no impositions from Sun.

The rules of the game are simple:

  • Only MySQL related contents. This is the MySQL conference, and thus, if you want to hack a videogame or the latest music player, this is not the place to bring it.
  • No advertising. The Camp is a place for hacking code and exchanging technology. If you want to advertise your company, the main conference provides sponsoring and partner agreements that will allow anyone to promote their products.

Sheeri will announce how the proposals should be sent, and how the acceptance process will go. Everything will be public, and the community will have ample space to contribute to the choice. Stay tuned.

I would like to thank Sheeri for having enthusiastically accepted this task.

In the meantime, start thinking about the main conference as well. Start your engines. Submit a proposal!

P.S. For the ones who think that this is a reaction to the OpenSQLCamp, think again. Sheeri has agreed to this role already during OSCON, in July 2008.

Monday Jun 02, 2008

Funny moments at Rome University presentation

There were some funny moments during the conference at Rome University.
Before Marten's arrival, we built an impressive heap of fluff dolphins on the desk.

For convenience, Marten used my laptop (an Apple MacBook) for his presentation, and he remarked about "open source enthusiasts who use closed source software". Mac OSX is, indeed, not open source, but it is the friendlier closed source operating system around. And since I am not a zealot, but I use what is best for me, I can cope withApple. My Mac has all the applications I am used to in Linux, with more pleasant graphics, media, and networking features. This is my personal opinion, and YMMV. Back to the topic.

After the presentation, there was a Q&A session. When Marten said he was ready to take questions, I addressed the audience in Italian, saying that we could take questions in Italian and translate them. Marten added immediately "and we can take questions in Swedish and Finnish at no extra charge".
We gave one fluff dolphin to everyone who asked a question. The audience appreciated it. The questions were frequent and spontaneous, and the extra dolphins were a welcome bonus.
When it was my turn to speak, on the subject of "MySQL Community How To", I started with this remark: "we have shown you the commercial dolphins. One for each question. Now brace yourselves for the open source strategy!" I grabbed two handfuls of dolphins, and threw them at the audience. I had their full attention, and they asked many questions, without further promise of dolphins.
One of the questions was "what is the reason for participating to a open source project? Why should I contribute?" And my provocative answer, which would perhaps deserve a full article to expand, was "mainly, participation in OS projects is for selfish reasons. I have an itch to scratch, and I want to ease it. If your application does 99% of what I need and I know how to do the missing 1%, by writing a patch I am solving my problem, and by submitting my patch for future releases I am making sure that I don't have to recompile the application in future releases. Thus, by looking after my interests, I am doing good to the community."
The reality is much more complex than that, but my answer pleased the audience, and I feel that it is not far from the truth.
Summing up, in addition to having a fruitful day with customers, press, and academic institutions, we had some fun as well.

Thursday May 15, 2008

Speaking at the Italian Free Software Conference

I am speaking at the Italian Free Software Conference, an event with the aim of considering the state of the art of Free Software in Italy.

The conference is held in Trento, Italy, sponsored by public institutions, the local university, and private industries.
My session is about MySQL as open database, which is a philosophical walkthrough of how MySQL has become successful, why Sun has bought it, what is in store for the future.

Monday May 05, 2008

Slides from Creative Programming talk

Thanks to all the attendees to the session on creative programming with MySQL at CommunityOne.
As announced, the slides are online.
3.5M (PDF)


Giuseppe Maxia


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