PGCon 2008 Wrap-up

Ok, in an effort to get people to stop harassing me about a lack of posting during [ PGCon], I now present to you my official PGCon wrap up. I’m skipping the technical breakdown on talks for the most part, you can get their slides from the conference site (and yes, I have uploaded both the [ anti-pattern] slides and the [ lightning talk slides]), but I did jot down some notes during last week on some items I thought were worth mentioning. The biggest thing to come out of this past week to me was recognition of the continued growth of the postgresql community. With a number of [ regional] [ conferences] springing up over the past year, I wondered if PGCon would be able to match the experience from last time, and was happy to see that it far exceeded it. That said, here are some other thoughts and ideas from the week that was PGCon 2008. Technical Highlights: If you’re not sure where to begin with technical content, my three favorite talks from the conference were probably ITAGAKI Takahiro’s [ Synchronous Log Shipping Replication], Josh’s [ GUC Tour] (even though he chastised me for attending since I already knew all the material), and Greg’s [ DBIx:Cache Lightning talk] (Greg, send me the code!). Of course there were a lot of other good talks, but I think those three left the biggest impression on me. Personal Highlights: Lots of people get different things out of conferences like this. I was happy to once again meet some folks in the community who I hadn’t met before [ irl], including Tom Dunstan (who I oddly had not pictured as being Australian), Guillaume `ioguix` de Rorthais, Dave Cramer, and Susanne Ebrecht, among others. I do need to say a personal thanks to Stephen Frost for carting my butt around town, Aaron Thule for keeping me off the streets; the Skype guys for hooking me up with a “Skype DBA Team” shirt, and Hiroshi Saito for hooking me up with a fabulous set of chopsticks (As soon as I opened these at home, I snagged a few pieces of Peanut Butter Cap’n Crunch from the box and they worked with no problem, quite awesome). Community Take-away: Of course you can’t get that many postgres folks together and not discuss different facets of the PostgreSQL community. One thing I noted was that we have a very large presence of Postgres in Ottawa, I think larger than what we had at PGEast for the Baltimore/Washington Area. Surprisingly, Ottawa doesn’t have a postgres users group yet, so it would be nice to see someone step up and get that going. Speaking of, looks like there will be two new user groups forming, one for Toronto, and one for Oklahoma (To be headed by Emilie Steele, whom I had the pleasure of hanging out with at the Airport on Saturday). Another thought on the community level was we need to continue to make bridges into other development communities. Most of the folks I talked with seemed to think that the incidents of unfriendly responses to newbies looking for help (the flamey/petty type responses about people who use windows or php or java or ) have mostly gone away. I feel stronger than most that there is still too much of this going on in the postgres community, but it seemed good to hear others didn’t see as much of a problem. For anyone left who is inclined to turn their nose up at others, the general thinking was “get over yourself”. Announcements: In the world of conference promotions, many conference holders try to bill their conference as **the event** at which to make all of the big announcements to gather the most eyeballs. I don’t think Dan really plays that game, but it was interesting to see several big announcements were made during the conference this year, including [ Yahoo’s Peta-Byte database], the widespread launch of the [ Postgres Rocks] campaign, and the announcement of [ 2nd Quadrant’s Italian division]. Congrats folks, if this keeps up we may need to make some adjustments on the pgcon schedule to keep people apprised of things. Adjustments: Speaking of adjustments for next year, I want to remind everyone to fill out the speaker feedback forms. We try to adjust talks each year based on the feedback we get from others. Also if you have general topic suggestions or other feedback, please let us know that too. Based on the current feedback, I think we’ll likely have a talk on MVCC next year, and also try to lean more towards talks with more practical application, such as talks on [ explain] or [ psql] or similar. TODO list: Up next for me is Portland PGDay & OSCon, both at the end of July in Portland. Between now and then I’ve aquired several TODO items, including working on the various dtrace probe proposals, updating a bunch of web changes, and getting things moving on phppgadmin. I also want to push out some more code form various projects we’re working on at OmniTI, and somewhere I need to do some work to square my laptop situation away (Ubuntu 8.04 has been a step backwards for me from 6.06, but I’m unsure in which direction I want to step forward).