After another week of hacking on MepSQL the DEB files for Ubuntu are now available.(MepSQL is my new "just a hobby" MySQL fork project.)
The Download page has instructions on how to install the packages with a simple apt-get install command. Debian packages will appear soon as they are now easy to add - I mostly just need to add new Amazon images for each.
Some time ago Stephen O'Grady and Brian Aker had an interesting Blogo-dialogue about what they call the "Cambrian Explosion" of open source development. The Cambrian Explosion means that we increasingly see forks of projects being developed in different directions, where traditionally we are used to open source development happening in relatively hierarchical and easy to follow upstream and downstream relationships. This is exactly what happens in the MySQL community currently, where in total there is more progress than ever before, but that progress is divided among several competing forks, none of which is strictly in an upstream-downstream hierarchy with each other.
I used to be a bit frustrated about this state of affairs, believing that if at least most of the forks could co-operate on a common tree, we would see even faster progress. But when I left MariaDB some months ago, I realized that the situation is what it is and since all existing MySQL variants are associated with a commercial vendor, there wasn't an obvious choice for me to continue contributing, which I still want to do. So I thought I might as well embrace this Cambrian Explosion thing and just publish my own fork as a contribution to the community.
My recent account of The State of MySQL forks seems to have gotten quite a lot of attention. I promised to follow up with a separate piece about Drizzle and also PostgreSQL, as the other major open source database, so I'd better keep that promise now.
Just wanted to highlight that Percona Server has now added HandlerSocket to its most recent release, being the first "MySQL fork/distribution" to ship it in easy to consume binary downloads.
HandlerSocket brings NoSQL to MySQL, and does so with a vengeance! It was developed at DeNa, by Akira Higuchi and is already used in production in their MySQL servers. The announcement on my former collague Yoshinori Matsunobu's blog flaunts a 7x performance improvement over the standard SQL interface in MySQL. The most astonishing part is that their MySQL is now faster than Memcached, even if the latter doesn't store anything to disk, so with this NoSQL-for-MySQL solution it makes sense to remove the caching layer completely!
Giuseppe "The Data Charmer" Maxia recently posted his take on the MySQL forks. I had been pondering whether to do the same, and seeing that what I planned to write will nicely complement Giuseppe's article, I was inspired to follow him into the same topic. Note that last Spring I created a Map of MySQL forks in preparation for Monty's keynote at the MySQL user conference. So let's see how things have evolved. I'll look into MySQL ecosystem as a whole and the forks separately.
The post is long, but the key takeaway is that despite the challenges, the combined development seen in the MySQL ecosystem is probably stronger than ever, the current situation is hard for an outsider to grasp but manageable, and if a few more obstacles can be overcome, we are looking into a very bright future indeed. There are more than 100 engineers (how much more?) working full time on the mysql code base (including both developers, QA, build engineers...). This development effort is an order of magnitude higher than other open source databases I'm aware of, in particular PostgreSQL and Drizzle. Often the open source project with most momentum and mass will come out as the winner, no matter what challenges it may seemingly be facing, and this is the case with MySQL too.
Some time ago I was asked to do a study of our most popular open source projects to assess 1) what governance models are out there and 2) if the governance model has any effect on the project's success (such as size of developer community) on the one hand and on the other hand on the business of the related vendor(s). Some of the results are quite remarkable and have general applicability, so I wanted to share them here:
(Small updates done on 2011-07-14. OpenJDK size clarified on 2012-05-21.)
Last week I announced internally that after my paternity leave ends next year, I will not be returning to Monty Program.
When I joined the company over a year ago I was immediately involved in drafting a project plan for the Open Database Alliance and its relation to MariaDB. We wanted to imitate the model of the Linux Foundation and Linux project, where the MariaDB project would be hosted by a non-profit organization where multiple vendors would collaborate and contribute. We wanted MariaDB to be a true community project, like most successful open source projects are - such as all other parts of the LAMP stack.
Links for today:
Andy Updegrove makes observations of the trend in hosting Open Source projects in non-profit foundations rather than one company, much boosted by Oracle's acquisition and abandonment of Sun's software assets.
Knowing that an organization is “safe” to join, and will be managed for the benefit of the many and not of the privileged few, is one of the key attributes and assurances of “openness.”