Archive for the ‘perconaperfconf09’ tag
Having written about what I think is cool about the upcoming MySQL Conference and the MySQL Camp, now I want to finish up with what I’d like to see at the Percona Performance Conference. Just to recap, this is a conference we created to serve those who want to learn about performance — not “learn about MySQL,” not “learn about database performance,” just learn about performance, period.
I want to see everything. I think this is going to be the single best conference I’ve ever been to. Even the way the conference is organized is exciting. For example, it’s running from early morning till late at night, nonstop. The sessions are also (mostly) only 25 minutes. This means if you decide a session isn’t all that interesting, you didn’t spend much time on it, and you don’t have long to wait for the next one.
So here is a small sample of the sessions:
- CouchDB: Behind the Buzz (Jan Lehnardt)
- Performance Instrumentation: Beyond What You Do Now (Cary Millsap)
- Hive: Distributed Data Warehousing with Hadoop (Ashish Thusoo and Prasad Chakka, Facebook)
- High Performance Erlang (Jan Henry Nystrom)
These are not just people who’ve learned about something and want to talk at you. These are the inventors, the originators, the gurus. It is truly the who’s who, and that’s just a few of them. If you aren’t familiar with those names, Google them and see. And after that, why not Google Theo Schlossnagle, Eric Burton, Monty Widenius, Andrew Aksyonoff, and a few others.
I hope to see you there. Bring your business cards and introduce yourself to me!
So far this year I’ve been totally silent about the MySQL Conference and Expo 2009. In the past I’ve been a vocal advocate of going to the conference and sending your employees to the conference. So my silence was conspicuous to me, if not to you. I’ve always considered myself a strong MySQL supporter and I still do.
Why wasn’t I telling people to go to this year’s conference? Simple: I can’t in good conscience tell people to attend an event from which I’ve been excluded (oh, the irony). So I stayed quiet while MySQL employees told people to read my article about how to get a session accepted to the MySQL conference. More irony. It is not my way to remain silent, but circumstances demanded it.
But now I’m back! My colleagues and I will be there, and now I’m advocating for your attendance there, as ever. You should come to the conference, and you should consider attending the Percona Performance Conference at the same time so you can learn about more than just MySQL (and see the “missing sessions” that weren’t accepted).
And for the record, I never pressured anyone to accept my sessions. I just stayed silent. That’s what polite people do when they’re not on the guest list: they just find another party.
We (Percona) just announced our Percona Performance Conference, and I wanted to tell you a little more about what we hope to accomplish with this conference. Let me show you some simple math that anyone can do.
There’s a handy iCal download of the conference schedule on the conference website. iCal is a plain text format that is easy to parse with a scripting language. I downloaded this year’s and last year’s schedules, and aggregated the number of times each company and speaker is listed as presenting a session. Here’s the Perl script I used to do the calculations; and here’s the result of running the script.
baron@kanga:~$ perl ics.pl Desktop/*.ics Desktop/2008.ics Number of speakers: 166 Number of companies: 106 Number of times Sun/MySQL speak: 73 Number of times others speak: 131 Desktop/2009.ics Number of speakers: 124 Number of companies: 58 Number of times Sun/MySQL speak: 85 Number of times others speak: 76
This year’s conference so far boasts only half the diversity of last year’s in terms of companies represented, and only three-quarters the diversity of speakers. Companies other than Sun/MySQL speak only six-tenths as many times as they did last year. But Sun/MySQL’s speakers take the lectern for 12 more sessions than they did last year. Last year, Sun/MySQL’s employees spoke only about half as often as employees of other companies; this year Sun/MySQL dominates the roster.
It should be plain that the conference attendees could benefit from a greater diversity of independent experts this year. In fact, I am not the only person who has noticed. Many others, including prominent community members and companies with many employees who’d like to attend, have said unhappy words about it to me. One of the motivations for arranging the Percona Performance Conference was that users, customers, and community members clearly had a very important set of needs that were not being met. The Percona Performance Conference is explicitly designed to meet those needs. Increasing diversity is just one of the goals. (There are other needs, and we’ve tried to meet those too, but that’s another post.)
We at Percona think the Percona Performance Conference will add value for everyone, including paying attendees of the MySQL Conference and Expo. I’ve heard numerous comments that lead me to believe the Percona Performance Conference will actually increase attendance at the MySQL conference, which should put more cash in Sun’s coffers, and some of that will hopefully cycle back to support MySQL. This is one way we’re supporting the virtuous circle extolled by MySQL executives.
MySQL’s leaders believe in radical transparency, and I applaud them for that. Transparency comes not only from interviews with the media, however; it also comes from observers who analyze available information and draw conclusions. For every person who talks, emails, Twitters, chats or blogs about this year’s conference, many others have noticed, remained silent, and just made other plans. We hope some of those people will reconsider and come visit MySQL and Percona in Santa Clara this April. You’ll see more diversity than you were expecting. I only regret that the announcement came so late; I know many of you have missed your window of opportunity to afford the travel to this event, or have made other plans.