Joshua D. Drake Blog Posts

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PGConf US, in partnership with Ohio Linux Fest, is pleased to announce the schedule PGConf Local: Ohio is now available.

The inaugural PGConf US Local: Ohio Conference (PGConf Ohio) will be held September 29th - 30th at the Hyatt Regency Columbus Ohio (350 North High Street Columbus, Ohio, USA43215).

This two day, single track conference is a perfect opportunity for users, developers, business analysts, and enthusiasts from Ohio to amplify Postgres and participate in the Postgres community.


Conference Schedule:


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Mastering Postgres Administration: Bruce Momjian

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Conference speakers receive complimentary entry to the breakout sessions on September 30th as well as attendance to Ohio Linux Fest as well. The half-day training options on September 29th are separately priced sessions. As a nonprofit event series, funding is currently not available for speaker travel and lodging accommodations.


Sponsorship Opportunities
The PGConf US Local series is supported by its generous sponsors: Diamond Sponsor Amazon Web Services and Platinum Sponsors Compose, 2ndQuadrant, and OpenSCG. Please contact us if you are interested in joining our wonderful sponsors for Ohio or National!

About PGConf US:
PGConf US is a nonprofit conference series with a focus on growing the community through increased awareness and education of Postgres. PGConf US is known for its highly attended national conference held in Jersey City, New Jersey, and has expanded to a local series for 2017.

The PGConf Local series partners with regional Postgres and open source groups to bring dynamic and engaging Postgres related content and professional training experiences to local communities. Host cities of 2017 include Philadelphia, Ohio, Seattle, Austin, and Cape Town, South Africa, with more locations to follow.

Contact: organizers@pgconf.us
Joshua D. Drake     August 30, 2017

Where is your path leading you?

 

At Postgres Conference Silicon Valley I promised during the launch that after the conference was completed PostgresWarrior and I would be taking a freedom tour to various National Parks. 

 

For us, our path is serving the community through education and professional and personal development. This happens in many forms including these newsletters.

 

Recent projects have been coordinating a successful webinar series from Yugabyte, creating  online live Postgres instructor lead training, and launching a new educational series on PostGIS. This is all happening while the Call for Papers for Postgres Conference 2020 now open! The ongoing goal is to allow any person to receive the education they need to be successful with People, Postgres, Data year around.

Training

The current training options from Postgres Conference can be found here:

https://postgresconf.org/conferences/Postgres-Digital-Training-Series/schedule/events

We have two performance trainings coming up in October:

  • PostgreSQL Performance & Maintenance on October 29th
  • Finding and Fixing Slow Queries on October 30th

 

Both of these training opportunities sell out at the physical conferences. They are solid content and at a reasonable price (149.00 USD ) it is hard to say no to a few hours for education in your day!

Software

Are you frustrated with the limitations and fragility of Logical Replication in PostgreSQL Core? There is a new software on the block called pgcat and it has an impressive list of features to allow your Logical Replication experience to be exceptional.

 

Looking for a simple script to help find tuning opportunities for PostgreSQL? The perl script postgresqltuner may just be what you are looking for. Yes, there really is an active developer community for the Perl language still.

 

A HyperLogLog data type for PostgreSQL from our friends at Citus. This Postgres module introduces a new data type hll which is a HyperLogLog data structure. HyperLogLog is a fixed-size, set-like structure used for distinct value counting with tunable precision. For example, in 1280 bytes hll can estimate the count of tens of billions of distinct values with only a few percent error.

 

Our partner Heimdall Data has been creating a new type of connection pool that removes a significant limitation within other software such as PgBouncer and PgPool. If you are looking for Enterprise Authentication (Active Directory/LDAP) as well as intelligent pooling for many users (and connections), it may be worth a look. There is a webinar next week on how it all works!

Does your path allow people to “Come as you are?”

In consideration of all of the great news from our community we can’t help but reflect on the blessings we have in the world of Open Source. Remember that Open Source is about exceptionalism, creativity, and most importantly freedom. When communities start restricting these three tenets of Open Source, they are no longer Open Source communities, even if their software is.

 

The theme for Postgres Conference 2020 in NYC is “come as you are” and we are asserting this mantra throughout our entire community. Over the past few years there has been an influx of toxicity throughout all circles and it is time for civility and grace to return. It is time to remember that we are all human. We all have angels and demons to our personalities. We are all flawed and we are all exceptional in our own way.

 

"But just because I don't agree with someone on everything doesn't mean that I'm not going to be friends with them. When I say, 'be kind to one another,' I don't only mean the people that think the same way that you do. I mean be kind to everyone."

 

-- Ellen DeGeneres

 

(Yes, this happened. No, it wasn’t planned.) 

Just outside of Moab Utah.

 

Find YOUR path.



Joshua D. Drake     October 17, 2019

Adaptation Lizard

As Postgres Conference pushes forward in the brave new world, we evolve and increase the ability for the People, Postgres, Data community to succeed. As a part of our positive adaptation we have a new website that features upcoming events, professional content (written and video), and the best in our written community via “Community Content”.

Discord

In an effort to provide a modern, friendly, and inclusive community platform, we have launched a Discord server for all things Postgres. We are providing a helpful experience with rule #1 being: Be Nice. Our discussions will branch out beyond the core of PostgreSQL and provide a forum for success with Postgres and related technologies. Join us for what is guaranteed to be a refreshing experience for the community: https://discord.gg/tjxNBCz

2021

We are seeking feedback from our community on 2021 in-person events. We are currently considering the East Coast event for October 2021 and the West Coast event for December 2021. Please help us in determining the type of event you would like to participate in!

Upcoming live events

We currently have the following webinars scheduled through October:

Joshua D. Drake     August 25, 2020

Why did you attend PgConf US?

We have been looking for high quality, experienced, professional support for our application’s database for some time. We have found it difficult to find help online… seemingly every phone number we called was just an answering service. When we heard that the companies offering the level of service we were looking for were all available in the same place, we couldn’t resist.

Tell us a little bit (one or two paragraphs) about your project:

Our project (VX and VO collectively named Victor) is a SaaS solution for 911 emergency response systems. Victor provides analytics and quality assurance tools and services, enabling agencies to assess performance, measure resource & deployment activity, model demand, optimize workload, and even generate financial estimates. For more information see our website.

Why did you chose PostgreSQL for your project?

Victor requires both time and spacial awareness, along with all the other things that are expected from an RDBMS. PostgreSQL is stable, secure, mature, well documented, open source, actively developed, community supported, and generally bad ass. The choice was easy.

As I understand it, attending PgConf US was a last minute decision. Do you think it was worth it? If so, why?

Absolutely! Our objective was to meet with vendors who were able to provide high quality support and we were successful. Additionally, we met a ton of super geniuses (Paragon, TimescaleDB, I’m talking about you) and learned more then expected. For example, we had no idea we could put raster images in PostgreSQL and process them with PostGIS… amazing!

Would you attend PgConf US again?

Yes… see above. Unrelated, but unbelievably cool, we met a guy named Solar… a PhD (from MIT!) passionate about carbon nanotubes.

Are you interested in contributing to the community and if so, in what fashion?

Yes! …and here is our biggest piece of feedback.

It would be great if there was a clear point of entry for people like us… we have been using PostgreSQL for several years, have been through several upgrade cycles (we started on 9.0) and have no idea how our skills could be of use. We make SaaS applications, but make nothing in C. What else does the community need? How can we help?
Joshua D. Drake     April 19, 2017

 Postgres Conference 2019


We’ve had a great response to our PostgresConf US 2019 call for proposals with over 170 potential presentations -- thank you to everyone who has submitted so far! As with what has become a tradition among Postgres Conferences, we are extending our deadline by one week to allow those final opportunities to trickle in!


We accept all topics that relate to People, Postgres, Data including any Postgres related topic, such as open source technologies (Linux, Python, Ruby, Golang, PostGIS).

Talks especially in high demand are sessions related to Regulated Industries including healthtech, fintech, govtech, etc., especially use case and case studies.

Interested in attending this year’s conference?

We’ve expanded our offerings, with trainings and tutorials open to everyone who purchases a Platinum registration. No separate fees for Mondays trainings (but it will be first come, first serve for seating).

Don’t forget that Early Bird registration ends this Friday, January 18. Tickets are substantially discounted when purchased early.

Register for PostgresConf 2019

Interested in an AWESOME international Postgres Conference opportunity? Consider attending PgConf Russia

PGConf Russia




Joshua D. Drake     January 15, 2019

We are having yet another PGConf Mini in NYC. The event is scheduled for December 14th, 2017 and Work Bench is hosting:

 
 
The event is part of the PGConf Mini series and is free to attend. The PGConf Mini series works directly with user groups and external communities to organize events for the local community. The events are held as a larger meetup style event with networking opportunities and up to 4 presentations. The current agenda for the latest PGConf Mini: NYC is:
 
Agenda: 
 
• 6:30 - 7:00: Jonathan Katz, (TBD), Postgresql Contributor and PGConf Chair Emeritus

Efficiently and Safely Propagate Data Changes Without Triggers!

 

Prior to PostgreSQL 9.4, the primary way to distribute data-driven changes across multiple tables was to use triggers. While triggers guarantee that these changes will be propagated, they can have a significant impact application performance, both technically and with development time (see: "debugging"). PostgreSQL 9.4 introduced logical decoding, which provides a way to stream all changes in a database to a consumer. Using a logical decoder, you can read all changes that are made in a table into your programming language of choice to perform many tasks: cache invalidation, data propagation, submitting changes to remote services, and more. Many PostgreSQL drivers, such as psycopg2 and JDBC support the logical replication protocol, which lets you easily stream your database changes to be manipulated using your favorite programming language. This talk will demonstrate how you can setup logical decoding for your application, look at architecture strategies for working with a logical decoder, and look at a case-study that shows how using logical decoding led to a big performance boost over a similar trigger-based system.
 
• 7:00 - 7:30:  Kevin Jernigan, Senior Product Manager, Amazon
Technical Architecture of Postgres Aurora 
 
Amazon Aurora is a cloud-optimized relational database that combines the speed and availability of high-end commercial databases with the simplicity and cost-effectiveness of open source databases. The recently announced PostgreSQL-compatibility, together with the original MySQL compatibility, are perfect for new application development and for migrations from overpriced, restrictive commercial databases. In this session, we’ll do a deep dive into the new architectural model and distributed systems techniques behind Amazon Aurora, discuss best practices and configurations, look at migration options and share customer experience from the field. 
 
• 7:30 - 8:20: Joshua (JD) Drake POSTPONED due to flight cancellation)
The Power of Postgres Replication, Postgres Expert - Lead Consultant Command Prompt, Inc and Co-Chair PGConf!
 
With PostgreSQL v10 a new replication engine has come to town. Let's explore Postgres Logical Replication, how to use it, optimize it and let it best fit in with your organization. We will also discuss its interactions with external tools as well as Binary Replication and features such as Hot Standby. 
 
 
 
 
Joshua D. Drake     November 20, 2017

What’s your view?

Over 25 years ago I got into an argument with my boss. He was frustrated with all the tasks that needed to be completed and feeling overwhelmed. I said, “Hey, why not go to a park and take in the scenery? You could work there too.” Those were the days before the Internet was required to complete your day to day. He was incredulous, “I don’t pay 1200.00 a month for an office to go work at a park.” It is funny how a single conversation can stick with you throughout life. Now that person is in the Cannabis industry and takes a completely different view on life.

 

Today I write this newsletter from Henry’s Lake, Idaho just about 30 minutes from Yellowstone National Park and the newsletter image is a photo I took this morning as I was about to make coffee. During these trying times with the pandemic and economic uncertainty it is vital that all of our community take a moment to reflect on what their view is. How is it that you are living your life? Are you putting people first? Are you helping each other as you move through the day? Are you in need of help? These are all questions we should ask ourselves and others every day.

 

With People, Postgres, Data we make an earnest effort to put people first, professionally and personally. This is why when we have physical events, we have tracks that are not traditional PostgreSQL faire including our Career Fair and Professional Development and Leadership tracks.It is also why we try to keep our digital events free. The better people we are, the better professionals we can be and the better the professional we are, the more we are able to help people. It is also why we started a new community chat server with Discord. Though the server is there to help you with Postgres, it also exists to embrace community with channels such as #watercooler, #food, #games and #professional-advice. It is a holistic approach that allows people to be people, not bytes.

 

RSVP for upcoming free digital Events

  • September 29, 10AM PST: Introduction to PostgreSQL ColumnStore Indexes

  • September 30, 10AM PT: Live Demo: Creating A Single Point Of Access To Multiple Postgres Servers Using Starburst Presto

  • October 6, 9am PT: Data processing more than billion rows per second

  • October 7, 10am PT: Database Isolation Levels, Data Issues and Global Transaction Consistency

  • October 14, 10AM PT: Live Demo: Unlock Data In Postgres Servers To Query It With Other Data Sources LIke Hive, Kafka, Other DBMSs, And More.

  • October 20, 10AM PT: PGX: Build Postgres Extensions with Rust

  • October 21, 10am PT: Using PostgreSQL, PostGIS, and pgRouting for street sweeping

  • October 27, 10AM PT: Logical Replication lessons learned for the Data Warehouse

  • October 28, 10AM PT: How to build local communities: a meetup perspective

  • November 10, 10AM PT: CYPEX: Revolutionizing PostgreSQL Application Development

  • November 12th, 10am PT: Blockchain as a Database



Joshua D. Drake     September 22, 2020

With the pending GA release of Star Link, more cities adopting municipal WIFI, and the growth of remote work due to the pandemic, one would assume that cell phone providers would be falling hand over fist to provide quality services at a quality price. Unfortunately this is not the case and it is hurting the future of our workforce.

Carriers currently think that 30GB of Hotspot data is enough for the average digital nomad. While that may have been the case previously, it isn’t any longer. There is a hundreds-of-thousands-strong workforce specializing in Information Technology, Digital Design, Web Development, and other creative industries. They are living, working and adventuring in RVs, Sprinters, Skooolies (pictured), and other vehicle dwelling options. This community is nomadic by design and should not be artificially limited by technology. 

 

Why is it that we are being charged so much money for so little? Outside of two providers announcing rural initiatives, we are still acting like data needs are small and that they come at a quality price. Data is ubiquitous; it is the new water (for getting work done). In the new economy workers need faster, higher quality, and unlimited amounts of data to get their job done.

 

Where could you go and what could you experience if you weren’t tethered by the faux limitations of bandwidth?

Resources

Featured Content

Joshua D. Drake     October 13, 2020

Congratulations

Henrietta Dombrovskaya, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion member for PostgresConf as well as Chicago Postgresql organizer nominated for Technologist of the Year!

 

Career Opportunity

A large, well known media company is seeking a Senior Level PostgreSQL Engineer and Architect. This is an on-site engagement, however the company is known to be lifestyle friendly with reasonable working hours, good pay, and benefits. Specific talents requested are the ability to mentor. The location is Seattle, WA. If you are interested in this position please contact randy@neuringerco.com with your resume.

Great content

Extension Highlight

We wanted to highlight some of the fantastic work that is being done by the ecosystem with Postgres Extensions. Although the base of Postgres is the amazing and extensible PostgreSQL, a lot of users don’t realize that Postgres has the feature they are looking for, if only they were to look to the ecosystem.

Notable Extensions:

  • pgaudit : The goal of pgAudit is to provide PostgreSQL users with the capability to produce audit logs often required to comply with government, financial, or ISO certifications.

  • pg_credereum : pg_credereum is a PostgreSQL extension that provides a cryptographically verifiable audit capability for a PostgreSQL database, bringing some properties of blockchain to relational DBMS.

  • H3-pg : PostgreSQL bindings for H3, a hierarchical hexagonal geospatial indexing system.

Postgres can do what?

There are a ton of Postgres compatible features out there. Some of them are overlooked core features and some of them require installing a different version of Postgres. Here are a few examples:

 

  • TimescaleDB: Time series data management with Postgres

  • YugabyteDB: Globally Distributed database with PostgreSQL compatibility

  • Postgres-XL: Horizontally partitioned PostgreSQL

  • Agensgraph: Graph capabilities with Postgres

  • PG-Strom: GPU accelerated extension for Postgres 

 

Upcoming Education and Networking opportunities:

 

Joshua D. Drake     August 07, 2019

PgConf US 2017 has now completed. We had a record number of attendees, a record number of sponsors and a record number of talks. The conference rocked. It was only made possible by a team of highly talented and dedicated volunteers. Thank you to those volunteers.



As of this writing, we are no longer the largest PostgreSQL Conference in North America. We are the largest PostgreSQL Conference. mic drop

Members of the South African Community










We attribute our growth directly to our community. We believe that there is no better community than the PostgreSQL community. A welcoming, inclusive community that shares knowledge and a common goal: Make PostgreSQL the database you use. It is because of this common goal that not only does our conference succeed, but the majority of PostgreSQL events across the globe succeed as well. It is why over 60% of our attendees have been using PostgreSQL for less than 3 years. It is why sponsors such as Amazon Web Services, EnterpriseDB, OpenSCG, and 2ndQuadrant consistently support the conference. It is why a brand new community member flew last minute from Texas the night before the conference (more on this new community member later). It is why the South African community shows up, every year.

Thank you to our speakers
There are quite a few knobs that get turned to run a conference and although it is an amazing experience to be a part of, it takes an enormous amount of resources (financially and physically) to execute it in a manner that is beneficial to all parties.

We think we did a pretty good job this year. This is not a pat on the back; we have more work to do. We want speakers to have everything they need including scheduled mentor times for first time speakers. We want speaking at PgConf US to be a pleasant, fun, and growth opportunity.

Thank you to our sponsors

We want sponsors to get better visibility. This was the first time at our current location and the layout wasn't perfect. We want to have "sponsor training." The PostgreSQL community is different than many, and sponsors (especially those that are relatively new to the community) should be able to leverage the expertise of the organizers to learn how best to work within the community. This would allow them to generate the business that makes it worth it for them to continue to sponsor.

We want coffee in the morning. Yes, the Chairs felt that coffee in the morning wasn't a requirement. Yes, the Chairs failed in a glorious fashion. We listen, we learn. There will be coffee in the morning at the next PgConf National.

There is more but that will wait for another day.

tl;dr; It is with sincerest hearts that the Chairs, Organizers, and Volunteers thank the community for supporting our efforts to bring the best PostgreSQL Conference experience possible.

Joshua D. Drake     April 04, 2017