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My impressions after giving talks at RIT++ and Percona conferences

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Three weeks ago on behalf of the CUBRID team a few of my colleagues and me have attended and given talks at two international conferences. Today I would like to share my impressions of these events. I will write a separate post about various sharding solutions introduced at these conferences. So, stay tuned!

RIT++

The first presentation at RIT++ (Russian Internet Technologies) was held on Monday April 22nd, 2013, in Moscow, Russia. The second one at Percona MySQL Conference & Expo was held on Wednesday the same week on April 24th, 2013, in Santa Clara, CA, US. At both conferences the agenda was the same: "Easy MySQL Database Sharding with CUBRID SHARD". At RIT++, though, the presentation was given in Russian language. Very exciting! The following is a list of resouces related to the talks.

This was the third time we, the CUBRID team, have attended the conferences organized by Russian Ontico company. Previously we have attended to RIT++ 2012 and HighLoad++ 2012 conferences. This year at RIT++ 2013 there were over 800 attendees, and 13 categories of talks ranging from client-side development to server-side, to database scalability, to project management, to analytics, and so on. Annually after the conference is over the organizers conduct after-event survey and assess the past experience. I think because of users' past feedback this year RIT++ organizers have accepted more talks related to client-side development than usually.

Besides us from Korea, there were presenters from the States, representing Facebook, and Brasil, representing PUC-Rio University of Brasil. My personal impression was that this year there were fewer foreign speakers than last year at RIT++ or HighLoad++.

At my session about MySQL database sharding with CUBRID SHARD there were over 100, close to 150, I guess attendees. The audience welcomed my speech in Russian language very well. Next time I should talk in Russian again. They like it! When the presentation was over, there were slew of questions. I think CUBRID SHARD as an easy sharding middleware for MySQL was received very well.

To my surprise there were many questions unrelated to CUBRID SHARD. The audience asked a lot about CUBRID itself and its HA feature. Later I learned that many attendees listened to my talks about CUBRID open source relational database system from the last year. One from the audience said that he'd been looking into CUBRID for a while already and was considering to use it in production. His most favorite feature in CUBRID was its built-in support for HA and very clever 3-tier architecture. Overall the unofficial Q&A session lasted for over 1 hour 30 minutes.

It was a great experience for me to present CUBRID SHARD at RIT++ this year and a great opportunity to our CUBRID team. The conference lasted two days, but I could not attend the second day as I had to head to Santa Clara, CA, to give a talk at Percona MySQL Conference & Expo.

Percona

It was the first time I have talked at Percona. Previously we have spoken at OSCON 2011 about CUBRID HA, and 2010 MySQL Conference & Expo about CUBRID Database. When compared to OSCON, Percona MySQL conference was a lot more specific (obviously about MySQL). There were more quality talks about scalability and performance tuning. If I was to choose where to go next year, I would definitly select Percona. That interesting it was!

Unlike at RIT++, our session at Percona conference had attracted only about 20 attendees. The presentation went well, but I should accept that the number of listeners plays a big role. There were fewer questions, less enthusiasm. On the other hand, Facebook, two Percona, Continuent, and Tokutek presentations, which were held at the same time at 3:30 PM, attracted hundreds of listeners each. After realizing this I came to a conclusion that it is the brand recognition that plays a significant role in attracting listeners. Even though NHN is very popular in Korea and Asia in general, it is almost unknown in Western countries. In fact, when I asked the audience at Percona if they had ever heard about NHN, their answer was negative. Very pitty. I think NHN has to seriously reconsider its strategy on increasing its worldwide brand recognition. Nevertheless, I am very glad we had this chance to present our open source sharding middleware at a well-known conference like Percona.

Like I mentioned at the beginning of this post, I will write another post covering various sharding solutions presented at Percona conference. It was very interesting to learn about different techniques used by large scale service providers who have developed their own sharding solutions.

After my presentation was over and I had answered all the questions, I headed to one of the lounge rooms where I had made an oppointment to meet with Ryan Walsh, a Corporate Account Executive at Percona. We have discussed about various opportunities for cooperation between Percona and NHN, the company behind CUBRID development.

Percona is a widely-known and reputable MySQL support and consulting company. It is known to be the oldest and largest independent company which provides not only MySQL support, consulting and training but also develops a custom MySQL server, i.e. provides patches, "backport changes to older MySQL versions to obtain a key patch without a full version upgrade".

During our conversation Rayn had introduced his company and told about large scale cases their company has worked on so far. One that I would like to mention today is that some of the services at Amazon Web Services have been actually developed by Percona. Amazon RDS was said to have been developed by Percona team. Percona database tools seem to work with RDS natively.

Also Percona is cooperating with HP to build RedDwarf DaaS as part of the OpenStack open source cloud project. At Percona conference HP engineers have presented how to use RedDwarf APIs to use and administer the features of Percona Server. Such vast knowledge and experience of Percona in bulding cloud database services may be quite benefitial to NHN to develop and provide its own cloud computing service.

Overall, both presentations went well. I have talked to many attendees and answered to quite a lof of their questions about CUBRID SHARD and CUBRID Database. One thing which requires more attention from NHN is its global brand recognition. The more developers will recognize NHN and its services, the more will be eager to listen to and learn from NHN enginneers.

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