First MySQL/NoSQL/Cloud Latin American Conference

Jul 3, 2012 / By Francisco Bordenave

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This last week was the first time we had this kind event here in Argentina. It was a great initiative and a good starting point for upcoming events.

Here are my impressions: Considering that this conference was the first one of its kind in Argentina, I have to say it was great. Small, but great. Not many people knew about the event, but the response was still pretty good. It was a 3-day event with plenty of technical discussions and sessions, and some other sessions came from companies who wanted to share experiences and impressions on what is coming for MySQL technologies.

1st day:
- It started with a session about MySQL Cluster 7.2 conducted by Massimo Brignoli from SkySQL. A good talk, it was more an overview about cluster features than a deep and technical session. The topic was too large to be explained in just 3 hours, so there was no time to go too deep.

- Max Mether from SkySQL spoke about MySQL in general, giving an overview about main features like mysqld architecture, replication, storage engines, and network. Again, this is a very large topic to be treated in a single session, but Max Mether was clear enough to offer a good understanding of what MySQL is.

- Our ex-colleagues, Sherri Cabral(Mozilla) and Gerry Narvaja (Tokutek), talked about monitoring MySQL. Their session was about general monitoring using internal and external tools and deep monitoring about not only MySQL, but general environment (IO, Network, etc.). They were awesome. The session offered a good level of deep understanding to have an idea on what to check, how to monitor, and how to avoid issues using proper monitoring.

2nd day:
- Alfredo Kojima from Oracle talked about MySQL Workbench. This session wasn’t as good as the others because it was more like an introduction to MySQL Workbench, explaining how to design databases (ERD), DDL, and DB documentation.

- Massimo Brignoli give a great session on HA solutions. He presented an overview of available technologies like MHA, Tungsten replicator and Tungsten Enterprise, Galera, Percona xTradb cluster, and combinations of different solutions to achieve real 5 nines on HA Cluster, Virtualization, DRDB, etc. It was all theoretic, but there was an additional session with practice samples (which I couldn’t attend).

- Nelson Calero (independent consultant) talked about health infrastructure and industry standards using MariaDB. It was very nice to understand how Uruguay is trying to merge their health systems using Open Source software (of course starting with MariaDB).

- Jonathan Traving’s (fanBridge) presentation was about MongoDB. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was clear and well-documented. I’m still wondering why people want to migrate to a NoSQL solution, but I do have a theory: They are replacing DBAs with developers. It’s a little bit paranoid, but it works for me.

- Ronald Bradford’s session about improving performance with better indexes was simply awesome. I found it incredibly clear and short enough to understand almost every good tip to get better indexing and query performance.

3rd day:
- Wow, the first session was amazing. I felt like I was being slapped with information. Martin Farach Colton from Tokutek talked about indexing techniques, from B-Trees to Fractal Tree indexing. His presentation included some benchmarks and projections about how information is stored and what will be the evolution in terms of indexing and storage considering how information is growing.

- The MariaDB session done by Coling Charles (Monty Program) was more informative than technical. It included some slides with benchmarking graphs to demonstrate MariaDB’s evolution and why it is becoming a great replacement for MySQL.

- Tomas Zon (Boo Box) made a presentation about common issues and situations faced by sysadmins while administering MySQL servers.

- Maximiliano Bubenick (Vostu) talked about cloud services on Amazon and his company’s techniques to support social gaming on Orkut for a 100MM users using MySQL running on Amazon. It was a great session.

- Okay, it’s my turn. It was my first time presenting in a conference. I had a well-concurred presentation about replication. I think it was good, but I prefer to wait for feedback from the audience.

- Fernando Mattera (despegar.com) made a really good presentation talking about Cassandra. He had good documentation, used cases, and so on. I really recommend it.

- Ronald Bradford (gosh this guy rocks!!) made a final presentation on Backup/Recovery techniques and tools. Again, I can only say this guy is awesome, clear, and detailed without dragging on too much, which I think is the perfect balance for a session.

- Finally, I attended an open debate about the conference followed by the classic Black Vodka (provided by SkySQL) toast, where we discussed the conference and set goals for next year (yay!!).

And last but not least, here are my conclusions about the conference: I think it was awesome in general. Of course, many things need to be fixed, but it was really great for a first conference in Latin America. I learned many cool things and loved seeing all those amazing people share knowledge, but the most important thing I’ve noted was the spirit present in the conference. All the assistants/speakers were there to share knowledge and experiences. It was simply amazing, especially coming from those who arrived to Buenos Aires the same day that the conference started.

I’m looking forward to next year’s conference and am very exited to be a part of this great community.

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