Introducing Alejandro Duarte: Developer Advocate – Cloud Apps / DevOps

Hello, World!  My name is Alejandro Duarte, and I recently joined the Developer Relations team at MariaDB—a team that focuses on helping developers to achieve their goals. We create content and example applications (check them out) that you can directly use in your projects and serve as inspiration for all the cool things that you are building. We also write technical articles, record videos, and speak at conferences. So I’m truly looking forward to meeting you online or in person in the near future!

I started to write code in 1994 when I was 13 years old, using the BASIC programming language to build silly apps like fake anti-virus software and simple video games. Ha! It was fun, and since then, I haven’t stopped coding. Most of my professional experience is in the Java ecosystem, but I have to say I also like C/C++ and have worked with JavaScript, C#, PHP, Groovy, Lua, and others. There are many interesting programming languages that I would like to explore in the future. Go, Python, and Rust are some of them. If you have any suggestions on programming languages that I should try, please let me know!



One of my earliest coding projects

Before joining MariaDB, I worked for Vaadin, a company that builds a Java web framework with the same name. I also happen to be the author of three books about this framework. At Vaadin, I worked in Developer Relations writing technical articles and videos about their technologies. My plan is to create this kind of content now for MariaDB. And again, I’d love to hear from you on the topics you would be interested in. Please let me know that too!

My first contact with MariaDB was several years ago when I joined a team that used it in development and production. Most recently, I had the chance to rediscover MariaDB and some of its capabilities, and I have to say it was a “wow” moment! Especially while playing with the ColumnStore engine and realizing the enormous performance in speed it offered when compared to InnoDB. Here’s an example:

On InnoDB:

SELECT author, COUNT(id) FROM book GROUP BY author
-- 20 s 218 ms

On ColumnStore:

SELECT author, COUNT(id) FROM book GROUP BY author
HAVING COUNT(id) > 5; -- 1 s 93 ms

~20 seconds vs ~2 seconds!

I was so excited that I wrote an article and recorded a video about it. In fact, I was so impressed that I started following MariaDB Corporation closely and soon realized there was a job opportunity for a Developer Advocate. After going through the selection process, it was a no-brainer. MariaDB touches the lives of billions of people. From banking and online shopping to music platforms and Wikipedia, MariaDB is the backbone of applications used every day. By joining MariaDB I’ll be able to help more developers.

On the personal side, I’m Colombian but live in Finland. So, in case you are in these countries or nearby, it’d be great to meet up and talk about technology or any topics really, if conditions permit. Also, in case we share hobbies, I like photography (mostly taking photos of buildings during the night) and playing the electric guitar.


One of my hobbies is photography, especially of buildings at night, like this one of the Turku City Hall (Turku, Finland).

Feel free to contact me via email, Twitter, LinkedIn, or my personal blog. My MariaDB journey is only starting, but I’m already excited to join such an amazing open-source community and start showing you some of the cool things you can build on top of MariaDB!