Last Conference Trip of the Year

December 4, 2016

ConFoo has now a West Coast version which has its initial dates this week in Vancouver. This is in addition to their spring show in in Montreal. This will be my forth time in Canada this year. Northeast PHP moved from Cambridge to Charlotteville, LinuxCon NA was in Toronto, and now a new ConFoo. Canada seems to doing very well even before recent threats of many Americans to move North.

2016 saw a lot of old shows in new locations — Zendcon, SCaLE, PHPTek. But many have anchored to their venues — RMOUG Training Days, Collaborate, FOSDEM, Ohio Linuxfest, All Things Open — and have improved greatly. And many new shows –Swanseacon, Scotland PHP, ContainerConNYC — have appeared and run as a smoothly as if they were old, long established shows with veteran crew.

For sheer pandemonium, nothing beets FOSDEM. This show has dozens of small rooms, short session times, and what seems like 99% of all the computer folk in Europe rushing around a university campus. Ironically Linuxfest Northwest is also a great many bodies rushing around a slightly smaller college. The energies at both events is very high and you will feel exhausted when they finish just from the hub-bub and frenetic pace.

SCaLE moved from slightly seedy LAX to posh Pasadena. The new venue is very posh, the content still amazing, but the local eateries are bit more upscale and I miss the old Carl’s Junior.
Northeast PHP was in very beautiful Prince Edward Island. Red sand beaches, lobster, and a a large developer community that caught almost everyone by surprise.

Scotland PHP sort of cheated. They had Arthur’s Seat looming over their venue and were next to a castle, the Scottish Parliament, and a lot of great single malt. That would be enough for many conferences but the organizers went to school on other events and put together a very smooth show with great speakers. The audience was friendly, very inquisitive, and asked a lot of tough questions.

I liked the St Louis location for PHPTek but it seems nobody else did. Next year the show relocates to Atlanta. Speaking of the south, All Things Open has grown from a few hundred folks to well over two thousand in four years. Todd Lewis and crew run very smooth shows and treat vendors and speakers very nicely. It is always a pleasure to be at those shows.

I will be travelling less in 2017 (hopefully). My counterpart, LeFred, has been a great addition to the team and has taken some of the travel stress off me. Sadly there are only two of us travelling and many new shows appearing on the calendar.

A big thank you to the organizers of the shows MySQL sponsored this year. The first hurdle is getting these shows into the Oracle Purchase Order system which includes a tough bunch of paperwork. Then each event has it own set of documents to be completed. This can be arduous for smaller shows and a nuisance for the bigger shows. But they did it well and with style. BTW if you want MySQL to sponsor you event, drop me a note and I will contact you.


Four Conferences — All Things Open, Scotland PHP, & Buzzconf

October 31, 2016

Computer conferences each have their own personalities. Sure their are some common flavors — Utilikilts at Linux events for instance — but each have developed their own quirks. These character traits develop around the content of the show, the core beliefs of the organizers, and passion of the attendees who stride through the doors.

This past week All Things Open was held in Raleigh and Scotland PHP was held in Edinburgh. ATO has grown from four hundred attendees to twenty four hundred over four years. Scotland PHP was a first time event with about one hundred fifty or so present. Todd Lewis and the ATO crew have mastered providing great content at a very low cost at a show where offer a wide menu to many. Paul Dragoonis (to pick on one organizer) and his mainly Scots cohorts carefully studied other conferences to get just the right mix. Both had vibrant audiences who had direct and detailed questions about product, best practices, and implementation. Both made sure their attendees had exactly what information they needed on wifi, locations, supporting events, and schedule. And their venues were both amazing all though Scotland PHP was in the Dynamic Earth facility with a castle, Arthur’s seat, and a Parliament build very nearby that could have proven breathtaking distractions if the content of the show had not been so outstanding.

This week in New York is Container Days NYC where they have a mix of unconference, talks, workshops, and open spaces on putting software into containers. See you there!

Buzzconf is November 25th-27th in Australia (and sadly will be only show mentioned in this blog that I will not be able to attend) and has a wide content offering of virtual reality, Internet of Things (IoT), robots, machine learning, augmented reality, and space exploration (stuff out side the Earth’s atmosphere, not at all InnoDB related).

As a sponsor and/or speaker, you can tell a lot about the show by the quality and quantity of communications from the organizers. Those that sweat the details well beforehand tend to have a much more smoothly running event. MySQL has (or is) sponsoring all the above events and the forms to get into the Oracle purchase order system are very detailed. Then the purchase order itself must be accompanied with more documents. For small shows these bureaucratic tasks often chew up time and manpower, usually not on their PERT or GANTT charts. The above shows went throw this process with much more aplomb than I do. Hats off to all of them.

Final thought: If you attend a conference and had a good time, learned something, hated something else, or see something obviously wrong that nobody else has spotted– please tell the organizers and volunteers. They put on these events for you, the community. Believe me that they could easily go to bed early, make a few more kid’s sporting events, code a few more lines, or just have many more quiet minutes with the time they spend agonizing over details.

And the next time they have the urge to walk away they just might remember you and your saying ‘thank you’. Those two words have a lot of weight for only eight letters.


NomadPHP, Zendcon, All Things Open, & Scottish PHP

October 12, 2016

Busy couple of weeks coming up for yours truly! On Thursday October 13th I will be presenting a lightening talk on the MySQL JSON data type before Chuck Reeves presents How the 3rd Normal Form Destroyed a Family— Get your tickets here

Zendcon returns to Las Vegas October 18-21st. MySQL is a sponsor, we will have a booth, and best of all Ligaya Trumelle is presenting on MySQL Server Performance Tuning 101. I have presentations on the MySQL Document Store and a Replication Update. Stop by the booth and win a dolphin if you can pass the MySQL quiz!

Next is All Things Open in Raleigh October 26th & 27th. where MySQL is a very proud to be returning sponsor and I will be presenting on database programming basics. Stop by the booth and win a dolphin if you can pass the MySQL quiz!

The a dash to Scotland for Scotland PHP on the 29th!


MySQL Central @ Oracle Open World Wrap Up

October 30, 2015

MySQL Central @ Oracle Open World 2015 is over. For the MySQL Community Team the event feels like juggling running chainsaws while riding a unicycle on top of a surfboard that is plunging down the face of a monster North Shore typhoon driven wave. For those who have never attended Open World, it is an extra 50,000+ bodies in downtown San Franciso and Moscone Center, the site for the event, hums with people for a week. Add in an Elton John/Beck concert on Wednesday night for a full nights entertainment. Plus the week before this overwhelming event, MySQL 5.7 was made generally available which added yet another level of excitement this year.

So what did you miss?

Sadly Moscone Center was being remodeled during OOW this year and we lost about fifteen percent of the meeting space. For some of the bigger products in the Oracle portfolio, this was a major inconvenience. For MySQL, it meant that roughly a dozen or more sessions were off the slate. Ouch! The keynote was in the afternoon which was a bit anticlimactic as some of the ‘news’ was in earlier sessions. But the session we had were all amazing, most of them being packed, leaving many to stand at the back of the room.

There were many simply amazing sessions and you have probably already seen links to the talks on the Oracle Open World site or on Planet. Besides 5.7 and a new Enterprise Manager, there were sessions on MySQL Router and Group Replication plus deep dives into generated columns. Pinterest announced many of their MySQL tools are open source.

Best title for a session? Bill Karwin’s InnoDB Locking Explained with Stick Figures and the session grew an audience of old MySQL hands and novices, even if it was the last session of the last day.

For many the highlight was seeing old friends at the Community Reception. This event was open to the public (and will be again next year, mark your calendar!) and many familiar faces appeared. The highlight was former MySQL AB CEO Marin Mikos and Rich Mason, SVP and General Manager of the MySQL GBU, cutting a cake to celebrate MySQL’s 20th anniversary.

Cake Cutting

Richard Mason and Martin Mikos cut the MySQL 20th Anniversary cake at the 2015 MySQL Community Reception

Many attendees took the time to quiz MySQL Engineers on the finer points of their products. And MySQL staff had the chance to learn from customers like Booking.com, Live Nation, Pinterest, Yahoo, and others. Several attendees were especially impressed with how Ticketmaster gets tickets into the hands of their customers. Take a look at the nearby illustration of their servers to get a glimpse of what it takes to sell 20,000 tickets in under a minute.

Ticketmaster

So how do you sell 20,000 tickets to a fight in under a minute. Just follow this simple diagram (and work really, really hard)

In a few days I will post links to the various talks. Please check back after I have time to recover and find the links.

We will be back at Jillian’s on Tuesday next year so mark it on your calendar and help us celebrate MySQL turning 21.


MySQL Community Reception 2015

October 28, 2015

Cake Cutting

Richard Mason and Martin Mikos cut the MySQL 20th Anniversary cake at the 2015 MySQL Community Reception

The annual MySQL Community Reception brought over one hundred and seventy members of the MySQL Community Together for a night of friendship, nostalgia, and entertainment. As in 2014, the event was held at Jillian’s on the Tuesday Night of Oracle Open World. I was working the door making sure those attending got their wrists bands that ensured the free food and drink were available to the holders. The event was open to all and not just OOW attendees.

It was great to many old faces. Martin Mikos, MySQL’s first CEO, joined us in celebrating the twentieth anniversary of MySQL. He later cut a cake with Rich Mason who now heads MySQL. There were too many others to name all but look through the pics in this post and you will see many folks from the MySQL Community from past, present, and future.
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Rick James

Rick James MySQL Forums Racontour

Lig

Ligaya Turmelle of MySQL Support


cake

The cake


Martin Mikos, Rich Mason, and Andrew Rist

Martin Mikos, Rich Mason, and Andrew Rist

Lots of food, discussion, and an an open bar

Lots of food, discussion, and an an open bar


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Next year we will be back at Jillian’s on Tuesday night and I hope to see you there.


MySQL Sessions @ Oracle OpenWorld

October 20, 2015

Oracle OpenWorld can be pretty intimidating. Besides the extra fifty thousand bodies in an around Moscone Center in San Francisco, there is an overload of amazing information that bombards you from all directions. And then comes the really hard decision of which sessions to attend. This year MySQL has three rooms being used for sessions.

The Catalog of sessions shows over 1800 session and MySQL is the subject of fifty three of those. The problem is that you can not be in three places at once!

For example on Monday morning there are two tutorials and a great session at the same time.

  • MySQL Essentials—Getting Started with MySQL [TUT2356]
    Ligaya Isler-turmelle, Principle Technical Support Engineer, Oracle
    Jeremy Smyth, Course/Curriculum Developer, Oracle
    Monday, Oct 26, 11:00 a.m. | Moscone South—254

  • MySQL Replication Tips and Tricks [TUT5467]
    Joao Gramacho, Software Developer, Oracle
    Monday, Oct 26, 11:00 a.m. | Moscone South—250

  • Architecture and Design for MySQL-Powered Applications [CON5041]
    Peter Zaitsev, CEO, Percona Inc
    Monday, Oct 26, 11:00 a.m. | Moscone South—262

Another example?

  • MySQL Server Performance Tuning 101 [CON2353]
    Ligaya Isler-turmelle, Principle Technical Support Engineer, Oracle
    Tuesday, Oct 27, 12:15 p.m. | Moscone South—262

  • Yahoo Case Study: MySQL GTIDs and Parallel or Multithreaded Replication [CON5409]
    Yashada Jadhav, MySQL DBA, Yahoo
    Stacy Yuan, Sr. MySQL DBA, Yahoo
    Tuesday, Oct 27, 12:15 p.m. | Moscone South—250

  • Feed Your Streams: Zendesk’s Maxwell Generates Kafka Event Stream from MySQL Binlogs [CON3340]
    Ben Osheroff, Principle Engineer, zendesk.com

If you are a first time attendee, make sure you arrive early for your desired sessions. Rooms fill very quickly and some talks will be standing room only. And there are some talks where you may not get in so have a secondary target. Take advantage of the Session Builder software and plan strategically.

And be sure to RSVP for the community reception Tuesday night and avoid the signup lines.


Chicago — MySQL Meetup & PhpTek

May 14, 2015

I will be in Chicago next week talking about MySQL Replication with GTUDs at the Chicago MySQL Meetup and at PHPTek! MySQL is the Training Sponsor for PHPTek for the second year. If you are in the area, please say ‘Hi!’