[Phpmyadmin-devel] Public report-back about MySQLUC 2006

Robin H. Johnson robbat2 at users.sourceforge.net
Sat Apr 29 16:34:07 CEST 2006

Hi guys,

This is the public portion of my report back on MySQL UC 2006.

Thanks to:
- MySQL/O'Reilly for inviting us.
- Seb Le Tuan, one of the CouchSurfing.com founders, for letting me stay
  in his spare bedroom.
- Seb's mother, for inviting us for dinner one night.
- The rest of you guys, for offering me the chance to go to Silicon

Saturday (before leaving):
- Prepared and printed 11"x17" phpMyAdmin posters. 
- Prepared and printed PMA business cards with our logo, my name, my
  email, our website, and my PGP key.
- I'll upload the template/datafiles for the posters and cards for
  anybody else that wants them - you'll need Adobe Illustrator CS2 and
  InDesign CS2 to edit them, so I'll put up PDFs as well.

- Left home early, all of check-in, US security, and US immigration took
  me a record 23 minutes. There was nobody in line for check-in, and
  only one person in front of me for security. I'd allocated 2 hours for
  all of this process, as that's close to what it's taken before.
- No free wireless in Vancouver, read a book instead.
- Arrived Portland, airport now has public free wireless. Waited for
  next flight and read more.
- Arrived San Jose on time, met with Seb, had dinner.

- Got a ride with Seb as far as his office, and took transit from there.
- Arrived conference centre just before noon after going around on
  transit - it really isn't a transit city - you really need to be on
  the main transit lines or have a car in future. The DotOrg area was
  not yet ready for any setup stuff, so had lunch instead, and sat
  coding for a bit.
- Set up booth with posters, see photos.
- Rode the light rail transit (very similar to the Karlsruhe trams), and
  saw downown Mountain View (see more photos, but I didn't find Google).
- Was invited to dinner with Seb's mother and stepfather.

- Early start, Seb dropped me off at the convention centre first thing,
  and I got everything else ready, including my demo of PMA

Tuesday/Wednesdayi common things:
- The HP booth was across the aisle from our booth, and one of their
  guys came over to talk to me - he's from HP Beijing, and offers us
  many thanks for making phpMyAdmin - and he gave me/us a set of
  chopsticks from HP Beijing as a token of thanks.
- Visitors to the exhibit area mainly came between the sessions (thanks
  to the free snacks from IBM and MySQL), but there were also a number
  of exhibits only folk, coming all the time.
- During quiet periods, I took a walk around and saw some of the other
  booths. There is a lot of focus on commercial clustering/replication,
  followed by MySQL support, business inteligence/reporting and then
  backup solutions and other things.
- I had at least 10 inquiries about how to help support the project, one
  of which will probably be donated code, and the rest were primarily
  wondering how to give us some money back - since they make such large
  use of our work. I pointed out the SF donation page, and said to email
  us if they wanted to do large amounts or something different.
- A lot of big names bundle/use PMA with their offerings: HP, IBM,
  Novell/SuSE, Rackspace, SugarCRM, SCO, Sun, UniSys, Google and more.
  They were glad to see us there, and noted a few general things:
  Their customers sometimes hit a blank page and have a hard time
  tracing it down - mainly due to us turnings errors off. They would
  like errors turned back on, to help them trace things. The IE/Gzip bug
  is not involved, as many of them turn off gzip to avoid it. It might
  be nice to detect Internet explorer and disable obzip when we have
  $cfg['OBGzip'] = 'auto';
- Also met some users from big places that use PMA - Los Alamos National
  Lab, Livermore Lab, US DoD, etc. One of the Los Alamos guys said if we were
  passing thru and the lab was in a low-security time (no classified
  projects going on), he'd give us a tour.
- Similar to the previous item, I had a few users bring their laptops,
  with reproduced bugs to show me - mainly configuration errors
  compounded by the new system (old config files reused), and user
  error. Turning on error display would help us a lot.
- There was one very interesting real bug - the user had a replicated
  database. Using 'DROP TABLE' on the master via the commandline,
  replicated fine. Doing the same on the master via PMA didn't
- I took a quick survey of all GUI tools that were represented at the
  conference, or that any of the MySQL folk could think of. PMA was the
  oldest, having started in 1998. The next competitor emerged shortly
  before we started on SourceForge in 2001. Navicat and Webyog 

- Spoke to Monty in the afternoon, and picked his brain about the oldest
  GUI, he also believes it was PMA, but he said he'd check the collected
  archives of MySQL email to be sure. He also mentioned something
  lacking in PMA, and other apps in general at the moment - lack of a
  good form builder tool for web interfaces, that is capable of hooking
  up the form to the database directly - there's too much manual work
  involved still.
- Packed up my booth stuff, as the exhibit portion was only Tues/Weds.
- The O'Reilly folk say that we're welcome at OSCON in Portland, end of
  July 2006. I may be able to make it there, not certain, as I'm getting
  married 3 weeks after that ;-).
- One of the PMA users asked if I had dinner plans, as I didn't we had
  dinner and discussed PMA/MySQL stuff.

- Did some sight-seeing around Silicon Valley, having never been down
  here before, I can recommend 'The Tech' museum in downtown San Jose.
- Cooked a thanks dinner for Seb, incl. my family secret chocolate sauce
  recipe to put on the desert.

- Up early for travelling, security wasn't too bad again, 45 minutes
  processing time in at San Jose, almost entirely waiting for security.
- Flight from Portland to Vancouver was delayed due to maintenance
  problems with the plane, arrived an hour late.

Robin Hugh Johnson
E-Mail     : robbat2 at users.sourceforge.net
GnuPG FP   : 11AC BA4F 4778 E3F6 E4ED  F38E B27B 944E 3488 4E85
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