Open Database Alliance = Awesome

The big news coming from the MySQL Community today is that Monty Widenius and Percona have founded the Open Database Alliance, a group focused onĀ “unifing all MySQL-related development and services, providing a solution to the fragmentation and uncertainty facing the communities, businesses and technical experts involved with MySQL”.

I, for one, am 100% behind this. I’ve always been a big fan of community foundations being a focus point for development efforts, they work well to bring everyone together, and to provide a sensible foundation to help avoid much of the uncertainty that seems to spring up around MySQL. I certainly hope that the ODA is able to do the same.

Though I do have one question, how does the ODA plan on handling competing members? If you have two companies offering the same service in the same market, which one will the ODA recommend? Monty specifically says that “all companies that are joining the Alliance should bring something to the table”, but it’s a bit difficult to bring something new when there are already several large players in the MySQL market.

I shall certainly be watching the progress of this alliance with great interest, it has the potential to turn the MySQL Community into a large driving force for development and change.

The press release is available here, Monty has written some interesting thoughts about it here.


  1. Hi Gary,

    It is great that we have been seeing the support of you and many other Sun employees, thanks.

    Regarding your question, it is not atypical for competitors to be part of the same collaborative organization/foundation; witness such initiatives around Linux, for example, where both competing Linux vendors and hardware vendors are members.

    The Open Database Alliance itself is vendor neutral. The partner members may refer customers to other members who provide complementary products and services, but as you point out would likely refrain from doing so with competitor members. That situation mainly applies to the commercial benefits of the ODA. Competing partner members may collaborate nicely (or may sometimes do a bit of jockeying for position, but that’s normal and fine) around community and MariaDB development initiatives which benefit all members.

    Ethan O’Rafferty
    Ethan.OpenDB (at)

  2. I couldn’t help chuckle when i looked at the open db alliance website and it had a ‘join’ button. How ever did they resist the temptation to make it say “inner join” or some other db humor?

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