Speaker Interview: Dave Stokes


Dave Stokes makes another speaking appearance at SCALE this year, giving a talk on "The Proper Care and Feeding of a MySQL Server for Busy Linux Admins" on SCALE 13x Sunday sessions at 3 p.m. The SCALE Team caught up with David and here's what he had to say about his talk, SCALE, and lunchtime at Carl's Jr.

Q: Could you please introduce yourself and tell us a little about your background?


A: I am a MySQL Community for Oracle and before that I was the MySQL Certification Manager for MySQL AB and Sun. I speak about 50 times a year on database related issues. I started off in the days of punch cards and moved to Unix/Linux after hardware vendors kept killing off my favorite operating systems. I have worked for organizations ranging alphabetically from the American Heart Association to Xerox and done everything from anti-submarine warfare to web sites. I have a MBA from the University of San Diego and now live in Texas.


Q: You're giving a talk on The Proper Care and Feeding of a MySQL Server for Busy Linux Admins. Without tipping your hand on the actual talk, can you give us an idea of what we might expect?


A: Often time sysadmins or developers get the “oh, can you ALSO take care of the database” request. Databases are the greedy, wanton children of the software world and often misunderstood. This session covers how to keep your database instances happy, healthy, and thriving. So if you ALSO have database responsibilities you need to attend. And for those who have heard this session in the past, it is updated to cover a lot of the changes that can make your life better.


Q: Is this your first visit to SCALE? If so, what are your expectations? If not, can you give us your impressions of the event?

A: No! This is my fifth year! SCALE is the show by which other open source shows are judged. The organizers and staff do a staggeringly fantastic job and the show gets better and better each year. MySQL has been sponsoring a track for a few years now to help support the efforts. SCALE is simply amazing and draws an great crowd and the best presenters.

Hint for first-timers -- The Carl's Jr. up the street is CROWDED at lunch, so plan accordingly.


Q: How relevant are relational databases in these times of Big Data and NoSQL?


A: So much of our data is relational that they will never go away. Many of the NoSQL options have no concept of AND or OR and that makes things like finding customers with incomes over such level and have bough recently a chore to find. RDMS are adding many features for huge scaling and key/value pair access to meet demand.


Q: Is there anything else you'd like to add?


A: SCALE is the premier show out there and the other show organizers tell me they are astounded by how much is done for so many at such a low price.


[SCALE Team interview by Hannah Anderson.]