Would you like to contribute to the MariaDB Server code base, its feature set, its quality? Here’s what you can do to help – in other words, here’s our Contribution Wish List
The assumption around code contributions is usually that the code contributor extends the product in a direction that corresponds to the contributor’s own needs, which in turn are close to the needs of other users. “Scratching your own itch” is the phrase commonly used.
That said, we have also been approached by potential providers of contributions that would take a more general approach.
Openness, Adoption, Continuity: That’s the mantra of three words MariaDB Foundation uses to describe its mission. At the core of Openness are contributions of code to MariaDB Server. The good news: We are now putting more resources into contributions, by hiring Andrew “LinuxJedi” Hutchings as Chief Contribution Officer, starting today Monday 15 Aug 2022.
As you can see already from Andrew’s title, it’s a senior position. When we opened up the position, we were fully aware that only a handful of candidates can fulfil our requirements of experience on the code base.
Well over two years ago was the last time the MariaDB Foundation staff had met. That was at FOSDEM, in February 2020. Thus, no big surprise, one of our topmost goals for 2022 was to have a staff meeting, face to face. It’s about time to oil the social relationships, to work together without connection issues, to be reminded of how work and life can be in a world where Covid isn’t the top issue.
In other words: we planned a post-pandemic Staff Meeting.
The outcome was different.
But let us start from the beginning, from the original euforia.
Yes, we are hiring!
And we are hiring for quite an interesting position: As a senior developer of MariaDB Server, with merging community code contributions as a main task.
This is a very demanding job. The MariaDB Server code base is large and complex, and being a good C / C++ developer is only the starting point for being able to contribute to it. You also need to understand databases, and the existing codebase architecture.
The existing codebase is demanding. Depending on how you look at it, it’s either very efficient (if you know it well), or it has many dependencies (if you don’t).
The lifeblood of MariaDB Foundation is contributions. Our trinity consists of the fundamental values of Adoption (of MariaDB Server), Openness (of the MariaDB Server codebase), and Continuity (of our operations and activities), all of which are centered around MariaDB Server. We rely on our financial sponsors to finance our activities, but the financial value of the code contributions we receive outshines the total sponsorship payments. That has been the case every year since MariaDB Server was launched.
The MariaDB Foundation has not given proper recognition to this fact, of the value of our contributions.
Our Board Meeting in April 2022 elected two seasoned new voting board members. One of them is Xiang Peng (Sean), Director, RDS Open Source Databases at Alibaba Cloud. I had the pleasure of having a Fireside Chat with him, which we recorded and put up on YouTube. Read on for his recommendations for MariaDB Foundation in China.
Sean, as he calls himself for those of us who have problems remembering, reading or writing his real name 彭祥, is a great resource for MariaDB Foundation.
Please join MariaDB Foundation in giving a bit of financial recognition to Olivier Bertrand, the developer behind the CONNECT Storage Engine! We will match your contribution up to a total of 5.000 €, on top of the 5.000 € that we have already allocated 5000 € for Olivier Bertrand’s Lifetime MariaDB Contribution Award.
Olivier Bertrand is an unsung hero. He is the original contributor and still the main developer behind the CONNECT Storage Engine, which – much as its descriptive name indicates – enables MariaDB Server users to connect to a variety of databases other than MariaDB Server itself.
MariaDB Server Documentation is now released as a single PDF file, browsable offline. Download the over 3000 pages and check it out!
Some things take long! In 2014, there was a request on Jira for delivering the MariaDB Server Knowledgebase in one PDF file. That’s over seven years ago. MDEV-6881, you see it in the number already – we are now at well beyond MDEV-28000.
The request has always been in the back of our heads. What triggered it now was playing around with Python and the relative ease of transforming one format to another, including PDF.