FOSDEM21 MariaDB devroom committee

We are pleased to announce the FOSDEM21 MariaDB devroom committee.

In February 2021, MariaDB will for the first time be hosting a dedicated devroom at FOSDEM, and the committee are tasked with narrowing down the submitted presentations to choose the most interesting final selection for the FOSDEM and MariaDB communities.

In past years, as part of the joint MySQL, MariaDB and Friends devroom, the number of submissions far exceeded the available slots, and we look forward to burdening the committee with a similar problem this year.

The committee

Aurélien Lequoy (68koncept)
Colin Charles
Daniel Bartholomew (MariaDB Corporation)
Manuel Arostegui (Wikimedia Foundation)
Sveta Smirnova (Percona)
Vicențiu Ciorbaru (MariaDB Foundation)

Welcome to everyone, and we can’t wait to see what you decide on!

Release Policy MiniFest Over

Done! Our first MariaDB Server MiniFest is over. A smaller version of our MariaDB Server Fest format, the first MiniFest was about the MariaDB Server Release Policy.

Where to find the recordings

Should you have missed the party, we have recorded the 3:18:45 hours of Best Bits for you, available directly on https://mariadb.org/minifest2020/. The sessions are also available individually, as linked below.

Presentations by MariaDB

We started off by three presentations by MariaDB:

  1. On Building MariaDB, by Daniel Bartholomew (MariaDB Corporation), with a follow-up interview by Vicentiu Ciorbaru and Vlad Bogolin (both MariaDB Foundation)
  2. On Merging MariaDB (exact title: Ensuring Build Quality in MariaDB) by Oleksandr “Sanja” Byelkin (MariaDB Corporation), with a follow-up interview by Vicentiu Ciorbaru
  3. On Security by Sergei Golubchik (MariaDB Corporation and Foundation), with a follow-up interview by Ian Gilfillan (MariaDB Foundation)

The User View

We continued with three presentations by users:

  1. From a Linux Distribution perspective, by Otto Kekäläinen of Debian, with a follow-up interview by Daniel Black (MariaDB Foundation)
  2. From a Microsoft perspective, by Sunil Kamath of MSFT, as interviewed by Kaj Arnö (MariaDB Foundation)
  3. From a Fintech perspective, by Kamalakannan Annathurai of DBS Bank (one of Asia’s biggest banks, in Singapore), as interviewed by Kaj Arnö (MariaDB Foundation)

The concluding Panel

For the concluding Panel on the MariaDB Release Policy, we had asked all speakers and interviewers to be present, which proved challenging – given timezones spanning from Canberra over Singapore across EMEA to the Americas.

FOSDEM 2021 CfP now open

Earlier this week we were happy to announce that MariaDB will have its own devroom at FOSDEM21, taking place on 6 February 2021, and now the CfP is open.

FOSDEM is free to attend, and no registration is necessary. It’s aimed at free and open-source developers, so engineering and DBA-related topics such as:

  • best practices
  • migrating to MariaDB
  • MariaDB features
  • optimising on particular hardware

are all welcome. Submissions that miss the mark, such as marketing talks, are not welcome.

We are expecting far more submissions than we can accommodate, so we are looking for 20 minute talks (with an extra 5m for questions) to accommodate as many high-quality speakers as possible.

MariaDB DevRoom at FOSDEM

Great news! MariaDB got its own DevRoom at FOSDEM 6-7 Feb 2021. Usually FOSDEM happens in Brussels, but nobody is surprised that it is virtual this year.

What FOSDEM is

FOSDEM is the biggest Free and Open Source Developers Meeting worldwide. I am sure it remains so in these pandemic times. While I will miss all the many social f2f encounters at FOSDEM, I am looking forward to meeting people virtually.

Separating MariaDB from MySQL

For MariaDB Foundation, this is no small challenge. We will have to establish a Program Committee of our own, when we have so far cohabitated with MySQL.

MariaDB Server MiniFest Wed 9 Dec 2020

New MariaDB releases come with regular intervals. Releasing a new version is a balance between new functionality and bugfixes on one side, and stability on the other. How do we get optimum quality for the releases? And what exactly is quality, from the point of view of DBAs and developers that use MariaDB Server?

That’s the setting of our MariaDB Server MiniFest in two weeks.

New MariaDB Releases: The DBA & Developer Experience 

This MiniFest is called “mini” for three key reasons:

  1. It has just one topic
  2. It is much shorter, less than half a day
  3. It happens just in one time zone

But it still builds on the pillars of success from our MariaDB Server Fest in Sep 2020:

  1. It features expert speakers on MariaDB Server
  2. It has pre-recording, subtitles, and follow-up discussions
  3. It is interactive, with the speakers “cloned” on Zulip chat

The special sauce

The special sauce for this MiniFest is

  1. Internal presenters explain the logic of release policies
  2. External presenters give the candid user perspective
  3. The desired outcome: improved processes and quality

The conference format

The internal (provider) presentations have a 10+10 minute format.

Machine Learning straight through SQL

Machine learning is one area that cannot succeed without data. Traditionally, machine learning frameworks read it from CSV files or similar data sources. This brings an interesting set of challenges because in most cases the data is stored in databases, not simple raw files. It takes time and effort to move data from one format to another. Additionally, one needs to write some code (usually python) to prepare the data just like the ML framework expects it.

I was pleasantly surprised when I saw during the MariaDB Server Fest that MindsDB, an automatic machine learning system, presented their integration with MariaDB.

Fest Content: 35 videos by 30 presenters

So you heard about the interesting presentations at the MariaDB Server Fest, but didn’t have time to watch them when we were live? Or you have so far seen only a couple of the presentations, but would like some hints at which other presentations are worthy of taking a look at? 

That’s the purpose of this blog entry: to help you pick and choose, suggesting what could be interesting for you. All the Server Fest presentations are available on YouTube, with subtitles and Q&A sessions!

Four tips

A first tip: Most presentations have a short five-minute Q&A session.

Server Fest Conclusions

The MariaDB Server Fest 2020 is now over! Time for some spontaneous, initial reflections.

The MariaDB Server Fest 

To recap, MariaDB Server Fest

  • was a virtual conference
  • spread out over three days in September 2020
  • taking place first in Paris, then in New York, and last in Singapore / Beijing (three days in each location)

The Fest was a first for MariaDB Foundation

The Server Fest was a first in many ways, for MariaDB Foundation:

  • The first time we addressed the users of MariaDB Server – not the developers of MariaDB Server
  • The first time we went virtual – so far, we have always met face to face
  • The first time we did a conference with Call for Papers and an approval process – earlier, we had what we called unconferences, with a very spontaneous agenda

A roaring success

The numbers speak for themselves:

  • over 10.000 unique video views on YouTube alone
  • over 2.000 simultaneous viewers on Bilibili.com
  • 35 talks by 30 presenters
  • twelve live streams, each with six hours of talks