March 28, 2014

Discovering the WebScale-treasure chest

Yesterday’s WebScaleSQL announcement marks yet another win for collaboration and openness. It opens up a treasure chest of database innovations built by the Internet leaders in order to scale their services to hundreds of millions of users. While some code was available earlier, the commitments made now ensure higher levels of quality and greater ease of access. These innovations increase significantly the diversity of contributions in the MySQL and MariaDB community. The announcement is also a strong signal of the criticality of relational databases and their evolutionary potential in the world of really big scale internet services. These innovations are no doubt applicable to enterprises facing large scale cloud deployments and huge data volumes. After years of NoSQL hype, this announcement brings new balance to the strengths and limitations of various database technologies. While the WebScaleSQL project is imminently relevant to many large scale web services that face similar technical challenges, many traditional enterprises facing database choices today will ask what this implies for themselves. Most of the patches in WebScaleSQL address high scale web deployments so it provides a common set of code changes that the participating groups can use as a base on which to apply further changes that are specific to their use case. This is one reason the coalition partners do not aim to release common binaries. Each of them may, for their specific deployments, add unique patches onto the common core of WebScaleSQL. In fact, WebScaleSQL could perhaps be seen as a library of patches from which each user can adopt the ones that are most relevant. SkySQL will be an active participant in the WebScaleSQL project. We will solicit community and customer inputs as to which features are seen as most relevant for inclusion in future releases of MariaDB. We will work with the MariaDB Community to review the code for those features, performing required modifications, enhancements and testing to make them ready for mass market distribution in MariaDB Enterprise. We will also contribute relevant MariaDB features to the WebScaleSQL project and aim to align our future development efforts with those of the coalition partners in order to ensure efficient innovation in the most critical areas. We look forward to an exciting Percona Live conference in Santa Clara next week. WebScaleSQL will for sure be a hot topic of discussion. SkySQL will be announcing new products that allow enterprises deploying MariaDB to leverage the wealth of innovations in the MariaDB and MySQL ecosystem. More to follow soon!

About Patrik Sallner

Patrik joined as CEO in 2012 after running the Content Cloud business at F-Secure where he was also leading the Professional Services function. Earlier, Patrik built up and led the Hosting Line of Business in Nokia Siemens Networks. Patrik has a long background with Nokia where he held various management positions in mobile phone product development, strategy and innovation, including running a cross-functional Corporate Strategy unit called Insight & Foresight. He also worked several years in management consulting with McKinsey & Company in their Paris and Helsinki offices. Patrik has a MSc degree in Technology Management from Helsinki University of Technology as well as an MBA from the Wharton School and a MA degree in International Studies from the University of Pennsylvania.

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