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Ingres Engineering Summit 2008

WOW! What a week.

I was lucky enough to participate in the Ingres Engineering Summit 2008 and I don’t think that a short blog could really do it justice. Ingres Engineering is distributed around the globe and this was an ideal opportunity to meet up and catch up. The summit was held in the Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, a really beautiful spot with great beaches, so they tell me :) and this year’s summit included a number of partners and academics who presented on a wide variety of topics. Jamie and Lisa who organized us all did an outstanding job, above and beyond the call of duty.

The engineering focus was on community and how to better engage it, interspersed with some very interesting presentations from our guests. Hugh Darwen presented on Project D, some academic work being undertaken by a doctorate student at the University of Warwick. CWI presented some interesting data for MonetDB/X100. Andy Grimm from rPath gave an interesting overview of their appliance technology and was able to help Paul Spencer from DM Solutions create one for MapServer.

A group of us joined forces to try and build a python driver for Ingres that uses the Data Access Message Protocol (DAMP) to communicate with the Data Access Server (DAS) and eliminate the need for the Ingres Net component. As part of this project we’ll also try out Mercurial for source control in a distributed environment. Unfortunately we didn’t get to show anything working but we’ll persevere with it.

The community related discussions can only be described as lively but they were thought provoking. Having worked with a few open source partners I know what I like; it’s just a matter of convincing the others :)

There was also a discussion of increasing the size of identifiers from the current 32 characters to 512. The change is simple but the impact will be quite widespread. After many suggestions of phased implementations and support for long and short names it was decided that we’d make a branch of the community code and make the change there; that would at least give everyone a working version that they could try and report back on. The SVN branch is ingres-main-long-identifiers from the ticket #23.

No doubt there will be pictures of us at work, rest and play; the links are starting to cascade into my in-box. If you see any that look like me, it is probably someone with an uncanny resemblance to yours truly.

I’m looking forward to the next one already.