Joshua D. Drake Blog Posts

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



The following table contains a summary profit and loss statement for PostgresConf US 2018.



In review of these numbers two things will probably jump out at you:
  1. Venue and F&B of 238,000.12
  2. Net Revenue of 202,201.62
Yes, we spent almost 250,000.00 dollars on the venue and food and beverage. In fact, the Food and Beverage alone was over 135,000.00 dollars. 

We were fortunate to have very strong ticket sales as well as partner support through Sponsorships. This support will allow us to not only meet our financial requirements for PostgresConf Silicon Valley 2018 but will help us make our financial requirements for our European, Chinese, and US conferences in 2019. We are also hoping to set aside more money for our popular diversity and professional development initiatives.

The Chairs would like to thank all our organizers, volunteers, partners and attendees for helping us continue advocacy of People, Postgres, Data!


Joshua D. Drake     May 25, 2018


On August 15th, Silicon Valley Postgres held their first Postgresql.org Patch Review workshop. The workshop was hosted by PostgresConf partner Pivotal. Attendees’ feedback indicate that we have found a great way to show how companies within the community can benefit Postgresql.org, Postgres User groups, and help us fulfill our mission:


There were 20 attendees, including Melanie Plageman of Pivotal presenting/coordinating “Postgres Patch Review,” and Postgresql.org -Hacker Jeff Davis as hands on help. This was the first workshop of its kind for Silicon Valley Postgres and with the feedback received, we are planning to plan similar events at least twice a year to provide an opportunity that is currently not available elsewhere. (Sneak peek: there may be one at PostgresConf Silicon Valley on October 15th and 16th, which is right around the corner!)

Eight patches were reviewed, with three including specific feedback to the patch authors:
We’re excited to be a part of this path of Postgres contributor building. Hopefully it will be a model for other meetups and community partners to follow in continuing to contribute to the Most Advanced Open Source Database ecosystem.

Silicon Valley Postgres is the fastest growing Postgres user group within North America. It was initiated just 12 months ago and will reach 700 members likely before Monday. The group exists to help all facets of Postgres users and the Postgres ecosystem, including, but not limited to, PostgreSQL, Greenplum, Aurora Postgres, AgensGraph, Yugabyte, ZomboDB, TimescaleDB.


Silicon Valley Postgres is also working with PostgresConf Silicon Valley to bring a high quality and cost effective education solution to the users of Postgres within the Silicon Valley. Early Bird tickets are now on sale and available. You will want to hurry as the Early Bird price ends on September 1st, 2018.
Joshua D. Drake     August 16, 2018

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

Pivotal Sponsor Highlight Blog for PostgresConf 2019

 

Written by:

Jacque Istok, Head of Data, Pivotal

 

1. Greenplum has its own community; what do you hope to achieve by joining the Postgres community and PostgresConf?

Both interest and adoption of Postgres have skyrocketed over the last two years, and we feel fortunate to be a part of the extended community. We have worked very hard to uplevel the base version of Postgres within Greenplum to more current levels and to be active in the Postgres community. We see Greenplum as a parallel (and analytic focused) implementation of Postgres, and we encourage the community to continue to embrace both the technology and the goal of the Greenplum project, which is Postgres at scale.

 

2. Are you planning to provide any new tech (PG features, etc.)?

This year we plan to announce several new things for both Greenplum and Postgres. We’re introducing new innovations in our cloud offerings in the marketplaces of AWS, Azure, and GCP. We also have major news about both our natural language at-scale analytics solution based on Apache Solr, and our multi-purpose machine learning and graph analytics library Apache MADlib. The next major release of Greenplum is a major focus as well, differentiating Greenplum from each of its competitors and bringing us ever closer to the latest versions of Postgres.

 

3. Are there any rising stars in the community you’d like to give props to?

While it seems a little self-serving, I would like to take the opportunity to give props to the Pivotal Data Team. This team is a 300+ worldwide organization that helps our customers, our prospects, and the community to solve real world and really hard data problems—solved in part through Postgres technology. They all attack these use cases with passion and truly make a difference in the lives of the people that their solutions touch. I couldn’t wish to work with a finer group.

 

4. What is the number one benefit you see within Postgres that everyone should be aware of?

The number one benefit of Postgres is really its flexibility. This database chameleon can be used for SQL, NoSQL, Big Data, Microservices, time series data, and much more. In fact, our latest analytic solution, MADLib Flow, leverages Postgres as an operational engine. For example, Machine Learning models created in Greenplum can be pushed into a restful API as part of an agile continuous integration/continuous delivery pipeline easily and efficiently—making Postgres the power behind what I still like to think of as #DataOps.

 

5. What is the best thing about working with the Postgres community?

 

I deeply admire the passion and consistency of the community behind Postgres, constantly and incrementally improving this product over decades. And because Greenplum is based on Postgres, we get to interact with this vast community of talent. We are also able to more seamlessly interact with ecosystem products that already work with Postgres, making the adoption of Greenplum that much easier.

 

6. Tell us why you believe people should attend PostgresConf 2019 in March.

 

PostgresConf is going to be awesome, and I can’t wait for it to start! With Pivotal, Amazon, and EnterpriseDB headlining as Diamond sponsors, Greenplum Summit (along with multiple other summits), and high-quality speakers and content across the board, this year’s PostgresConf promises to be bigger and better than ever and surely won’t disappoint.

 

We’re thrilled to be back to present the second annual Greenplum Summit on March 19th at PostgresConf. Our theme this year is “Scale Matters”, and what we’ve seen with our customers is that every year it matters more and more. Our users are part of organizations that are generating tons of data and their need to easily and quickly ingest and interrogate all of it is paramount. This is true even more now than ever before as the insights that can be found not only help differentiate them from their competitors, but are also used to build better products and increase customer loyalty.

 

The day will be filled with real-world case studies from Greenplum users including Morgan Stanley, the European Space Astronomy Centre, Insurance Australia Group, Purdue University, Baker Hughes (a GE company), Conversant, and others, plus presentations and deep-dive tech sessions for novices and experts alike.

Joshua D. Drake     February 14, 2019

In 2016 we started working with horizontal communities. We wanted to make sure that PgConf US was an inclusive community that advocated not only for the best database in the world but also all the external Open Source technologies that make the best database in the world the best platform in the world. 

This year we wanted to continue building a stronger community through relationships and our efforts are proving successful. We have joined forces with several horizontal communities to bring original and related content to PgConf US. The first is Big Apple Py. They are working with PgConf US to run a full track of Python content as well as a development workshop. 


The workshop is particularly interesting as it will focus on a code sprint to develop a mature and user friendly Python based conference software. I wonder if they know we already use a Ruby on Rails solution...

We also have a great workshop being presented by DockerNYC and Jesse White: Automating production ready databases in Docker
DockerNYC
PgConf US 2017 is less than two weeks away and we continue to work with communities to bring you even more new content! Stay tuned as we expect to announce more workshops in the next few days. If you haven't purchased your tickets, today would be a good day.
Joshua D. Drake     March 15, 2017

PGConf US in partnership with the Austin PostgreSQL User Group (AUSPUG) is pleased to announce that the call for papers for PGConf Local: Austin is now open.


AUSTIN, June 28, 2017 -- The inaugural PGConf US Local: Austin Conference (PGConf Austin) will be held November 3 - 4, 2017, at the Norris Conference and Event Center (2525 W. Anderson Ln #365, Austin, TX 78757) located in northwest Austin.


This two day, multi track conference is a perfect opportunity for users, developers, business analysts and enthusiasts from the Southwest to amplify Postgres and participate with the Postgres community.
The Call for Papers for PGConf Austin is now open, and presentation proposals can be submitted at https://pgconf.us/conferences/Austin2017

The call for papers for PGConf Austin will be open until Sunday, August 20, 2017, and speakers will be notified of acceptance/decline no later than Monday, August 28, 2017. Registration for PGConf Austin will also open August 28.

Conference Schedule:
  • Friday, November 3, 2017: Half-day Trainings with Postgres experts
  • Saturday, November 4, 2017: Breakout Sessions (lunch and coffee break provided)


Conference speakers receive complimentary entry to the breakout sessions on November 4 -- the half-day trainings are separately priced sessions. As a nonprofit event series, funding is currently not available for speaker travel and lodging accommodations. Everyone is encouraged to submit a talk or training to the first PGConf supported nonprofit educational events in Texas, and join the growing PostgreSQL community.
Sponsorship Opportunities
PGConf Local series is supported by its generous sponsors, including Diamond Sponsor Amazon Web Services and Platinum Sponsors 2ndQuadrant, Compose, and OpenSCG, as well as Media Sponsor AmplifyPostgres. Business leaders and companies interested in sponsoring PGConf US nonprofit events can view the Conference Prospectus .


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


The PGConf Local series partners with local Postgres and open source groups to bring dynamic and engaging Postgres related content and professional training experience to their local communities in major metroplexes. 2017 host cities include Philadelphia, Seattle, and Austin, as well as Internationally in South Africa with more locations to follow.


Media Contact: organizers@pgconf.us

Joshua D. Drake     June 28, 2017

That's right, folks; the time has come. 

What time you ask?

The time to join the largest Postgres Conference in the world by submitting a talk or training to PostgresConf US 2018!

We want to set the world stage for what a Postgres and Data conference should look like with quality people, quality content, and lots of interesting things about data.

Your window is short; the CFP closes on Monday at midnight. That means no last minute, witching-hour submissions!


PostgresConf.Org would not be possible without our speakers, attendees and sponsors. 

Diamond: Amazon Web Services, Pivotal
Platinum: Compose.IO, 2ndQuadrant, OpenSCG, Microsoft
Joshua D. Drake     January 18, 2018


How do you use Postgres?

I work Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and within Fred Hutch, I work for the largest group called SCHARP, Statistical Center for HIV/AIDS Research and Prevention. We use Postgres to monitor the AIDS drug trials real time to see if the trials are working or not. This means we collect the data from doctors and labs around the world, and analyzing the data. We also have servers where we receive data from other research institutes and share our randomized data, de-personalized, with other research institutes.


What community contributions have you provided?

In 2010 I started SeaPUG, Seattle Postgres Users Group, at the request of Josh Drake. I have at least have the presentations there every year. I have also discovered several PostgreSQL: bugs which have been fixed. Some of them affected every version of PostgreSQL. Bug numbers: 7553, 8173, 8257, 8291. I also found 8545, which has not been fixed but Core has acknowledge needs to be fixed but they are not sure where it should be fixed, pg_dump or pg_dumpall. I started the PostgreSQL track at LinuxFest Northwest in 2014 after my GIS presentation in 2013 was standing room only. This year I got a booth at the SeaGL, Seattle GNU Linux, conference with the idea of having a booth there next year along with also doing a PostgreSQL presentation next year at the conference.


You recently took a renewed interest in speaking at Postgres Conferences, why?

I have been giving presentations locally now for the last 7 years and so I am now ready to move on to the next step, doing presentations at the Local and National conferences around the United States.


What is the #1 barrier you see to Postgres adoption?

People not knowing about PostgreSQL, most people know about MYSQL, MSSQL and Oracle, but do not know about PostgreSQL. This is changing, some, with the Cloud providers now offering PostgreSQL, but I go to these conferences, LinuxFest Northwest and SeaGL, and people all the time are asking me, "What is Postgres and why should I use it over MYSQL, MSSQL or Oracle", because they have never heard of PostgreSQL.


What is something you feel the wider Postgres community could be better at?

We need to promote PostgreSQL so that new people starting personal projects and starting at companies, will think about PostgreSQL before other databases. This starts with getting the younger generation interested in PostgreSQL and that also means that we need to get the college professors willing to talk about PostgreSQL in their curriculums instead of ignoring PostgreSQL for all the other competing databases. Some of this means that at all the other conferences, we need to have a PostgreSQL presence, aka booth and presentations. We should also come up with a certification method for PostgreSQL DBA's, User's, Engineer's, etc so that prospective employers will have an idea of the prospective employees skill set.

Joshua D. Drake     December 12, 2017