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21 March 2008

Leaving MySQL, 20030908 - 20080321

Ask me a couple of months ago and I would have said that I was going to join Sun Microsystems after their acquisition of MySQL. Ask me two weeks ago and I would have said that I hope that things would work out.

At the end of this month, MySQL as a corporate entity would cease to exist and the MySQL employees become Sun Microsystems employees. Except for me and a small handful of people: Today, Friday 21 March 2008, is my final day working for MySQL. For various reasons, I felt I could not sign the agreements with Sun. This gives me an opportunity to go in a slightly different direction with my career.

Why have I only announced it on my final day? It was all quite sudden: Only on Tuesday I was informed that I would not be permitted to work through my notice period - which originally would have had me working until the middle of June. I had plans to get a couple of projects completed before I left and it would give me time for a smoother handover of tasks and perhaps a nice announcement a few weeks in advance. Who is now going to maintain the plug-ins code? I suppose it will now fall into someone's lap in a similar way how it fell into my lap: Somewhat haphazardly and unplanned. Of course, that happened soon after InnoDB was purchased by Oracle and Martin Mickos, made an announcement about plug-in storage engines being the way of the future - someone had to work on it to make it happen.... **plonk**
Still, I hate leaving things partially completed. Just makes things untidy for someone else to take over. Not that I have much choice under the current circumstance. I will resume being a member of the MySQL community and will stay in touch with MySQL, contribute a few patches. I told Jeffrey that there needs to be a better process for community to interact with the MySQL code - he said that something is being worked out.

So many things going to happen soon too - next month, April, has the MySQL User Conference and Expo in Santa Clara - I hope that our presentation on External Language Stored Procedures for MySQL is informative and well received. In May, I have a much deserved vacation which was booked last year - I had plenty of accrued vacation. Those plans are not going to change now - so I suppose I will start my new job in June.

Oh well, end of a 4 years 6 month chapter... also end of the MySQL-as-a-small-upstart-company era too. I wish all my former colleagues, including those which have now joined Sun, all the best for the future. I hope that Sun continues the great MySQL traditions. keep growing their business, keep MySQL as a fun product to use.

5 comments:

Frank said...

Wow, that makes it two very smart people that have left Sun. I wonder how much further Sun will be hurt if it keeps having a brain drain.

Congratulations on your decision. Having read a few clauses from the agreement in question, I know I'd have done the same.

Ronald Bradford said...

Well as it's also my last day at MySQL, and our stories echo a similar line, I'll be sure to include you in my shouts tonight. I hope we can talk more at UC.

Ronald
www.ronaldbradford.com

Artem Russakovskii said...

That is unfortunate indeed, especially with the circumstances you've described. I am glad, however, that you're going to remain active in the community, hopefully the bitterness will go away (though it'll take time).

Good luck with your next project, whatever it will be (a mysql powered rocket?)

Antony said...

There is no "bitterness" at all and I shall gladly work or collaborate with my former colleagues.

Sometimes, this is just the way things happen and a large organization, such as Sun, cannot accommodate the specific needs of every one of the 400+ new employees they have acquired within 3 short weeks. Large corporations, simply from necessity have large complex legal requirements.

It is amazing how quickly the integration occurred. I must admit, when the acquisition was first announced, I had thought it would be months before we saw any impact.

No need to read anything into my specific circumstance. I am sure that for many MySQL employees, the Sun offer fitted their needs just fine.

BrianAker said...

Looking forward to continue working with you on MySQL :)

Good luck!