… Ya se que estás piantao, piantao, piantao…
For my lastest blog, a review of the MySQL, NoSQL and Cloud Conference, I’ll continue to use the tango metaphor. Balada para un loco (ballad for a crazy one) is a Piazzola classic and explains what I think of Santiago Lertora from Binlogic for single handedly putting together this event; he had to be piantao (slang for ‘crazy’) to pursue his vision to kick start the Open Source database community in South America into becoming as active as it is in the US and Europe. He was able to gather some renowned speakers such as our own Martin Farach-Colton, Sheeri Cabral from Mozilla, Max Mether and Massimo Brignoli from SkySQL, Colin Charles from Monty Program, Alejandro Kojima from the MySQL team at Oracle, Oracle ACE director Ronald Bradford, and many more. Among the firms attending, some also featuring speakers, were some of the best known Internet companies in South America such as despegar.com, OLX and MercadoLibre. The talks included non-MySQL presentations like the ones covering MongoDB and Cassandra topics.
For many foreigners who experience Argentina for the first time I always tell them that the first rule of business in Buenos Aires is: Chaos is part of the system. So don’t take it personally if deadlines aren’t met, meetings don’t start on time or plans change at the last minute. Wednesday truckers’ strike and demonstration near the hotel (see Reuterscoverage), and Boca Juniors (the most popular soccer club in Argentina) first leg of their Libertadores’ finals game (you can read more from the goal.com article) the same night didn’t help.
The tutorial I delivered with Sheeri Cabral and my talk, both around monitoring MySQL, had roughly the same number of people I would’ve expect at the MySQL Users Conference talks. We got great audience participation and feedback.
Martin’s talk was early Thursday morning, and given that the soccer game ended around midnight the previous night, not many people showed up on time. However, at the request of the attendees that missed it, he gave it again later in the day. Listening to him using Argentine cultural references to explain database indexing strategies was really entertaining for everybody and made the points very clear.
Right after Martin’s talk, I stayed to listen to Colin Charles where he explained the development process behind MariaDB. It’s interesting to get to know the process by which they take the original MySQL code as published by Oracle and apply the different patches to come up with their version. It’s a real challenge that they have solved in an interesting way for the benefit of MySQL users everywhere.
In summary it was a great event. The number of paying attendees and total people registered at the website were well above expectations. Most importantly, it achieved the goal of gathering a critical mass of local and international community members which hopefully will kick start an active local community as Santiago hoped for. Based on the feedback provided by attendees and speakers, I have no doubt that the 2013 edition will be even better. I look forward to being a part of it and I’m sure Martin wouldn’t mind another excuse to visit our native country.
Thank you Santiago for being piantao enough to organize this event and jump-start the regional Open Source database community in such a great way. We wish you the best.
You can read the lyrics in Spanish and English, and listen to this tango here.