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Showing entries 1 to 16

Displaying posts with tag: Writing (reset)

Writing a Book: Building Pentaho Solutions
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Ok - this has been stewing for some time now, and I think now is the right time to announce that I am working together with Jos van Dongen from Tholis Consulting to create a book for Wiley with the tentative title "Building Pentaho Solutions".

My personal aim is to make this book the primary point of reference for DBAs and Application Developers that are familiar with Open Source products like MySQL and PostgreSQL but have no prior BI skills, as well as BI professionals that are familiar with closed source BI products like Microsoft BI and Business Objects that want to learn how to get things done with Pentaho.

The book



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High Performance MySQL 2nd Edition gets revised and translated
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Just thought I’d update you. We got quite a few good errata from readers, and I took a couple weekends and went through the book with a fine-toothed comb, catching typos and subtle errors that crept in at some point (TPC benchmarks were labeled as TCP benchmarks — did you catch that one?). I marked up my book and mailed it to O’Reilly, who went well above and beyond what they normally do for errata. Normally, once a book is in print they will fix only serious technical errors. They fixed everything, even going as far as rearranging page breaks and moving figures to improve readability.

The second printing is on Monday August 4th. Already! I think the book has been selling a lot better than anticipated. I know I am psyched to see it remain in the top couple thousand on Amazon. And they thought it was a big deal

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Book Review: Building powerful and robust websites with Drupal 6
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I just finished reading Building Powerful and Robust Websites with Drupal 6 (this title on Packt’s site). I’ve been working on a website powered by Drupal, and though it was obvious that Drupal is very flexible

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High Performance MySQL is going to press, again
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Apparently High Performance MySQL, 2nd Edition is selling quite well — I’m not sure exactly how well — because we’re preparing for a second printing. This makes me very happy. I don’t think they anticipated going back to the press for quite some time.

The book fluctuates between sales rank 1000 and 2000 on Amazon during the day, and has reached as high as 600 or so. This is just phenomenal. The O’Reilly team was psyched when it broke 5000, and so was I — but now we’ve stayed under 2000 for a long time (except when Amazon sold out of it). Frankly I’d have thought that for a niche-market book like this, we’d have been in the 10,000 range or something like that.

Clearly we (the authors, editors, publisher, etc) have done something right!

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What if you find errors in High Performance MySQL?
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The book is done now, right? What’s next?

Don’t tell my wife this, but a book is never done.

Right now I’m proofreading the printed copy. I proofread PDF after PDF during production, but some problems will always slip through and make it to paper. I’m finding quite a few little mistakes. For example, at one point we refer to TPC as TCP three times in a row. Oops.

These problems will be corrected in the next printing. Please notify me if you find any errors yourself, and I’ll add them to the list of things to fix! Also let me know if you find things that should just be “fixed” in general. For example, the layout and page-breaking on pages 364 and 365 is totally confusing — it’s hard to tell which figures are associated with which text.

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What it?s like to write a technical book, continued
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My post on what it’s like to write a technical book was a stream-of-consciousness look at the process of writing High Performance MySQL, Second Edition. I got a lot of responses from it and learned some neat things I wouldn’t have learned if I hadn’t written the post. I also got a lot of questions, and my editor wrote a response too. I want to follow up on these things.

Was I fair, balanced and honest?

I really intended to write the post as just “here’s what it’s like, just so you’re prepared.” But at some point I got really deep into it and lost my context. That’s

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What is it like to write a technical book?
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As you probably know, I recently finished writing a book with a few co-authors. I kept notes along the way and wanted to describe the process for those who are thinking about writing a book, too.

Update: see the followup post for more of the story, including my editor’s responses.

I think it’s important to be objective; my purpose here is to help prospective authors get a feeling of what it’s like, and it’s not all good (but I’d encourage people to do it anyway). Hopefully I won’t come off as sounding peeved at anyone or like I’m trying to put people down. I’ll have a lot to say about what went right and wrong, and how it helped and hindered

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Contributing to the MySQL User Guide
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The MySQL User Guide is worth looking at. Its not the reference manual (which is excellent - kudos to our Documentation Team). Its target audience are users that are new to databases or users that are new to MySQL in general.

What’s really interesting about the MySQL User Guide is that you can help shape it. You, the community, can participate in writing it!

I for one, know that this is the easiest way you can start contributing to any open source project. Documenting it. Soon, you will realise that you’ve become an expert (writing documentation, or giving training, will always keep you sharp). Some move on to then delving in coding, some go on being consultants, and some end up

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MySQL, meets Sun
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A lot of people have repeatedly asked me why I’ve not mentioned my thoughts on the Sun-MySQL acquisition (and this blog post, clearly comes almost a month later). I’ve just been pre-occupied and have not had the time to come up with a lengthy blog post. I can however, recommend the following video, created by Mike Lischke, of MySQL Workbench fame.



Naturally, you should also read the Q&A Session with Marten Mickos, that was mostly whipped up almost immediately after the acquisition. Editorial kudos on that one goes to Lenz Grimmer, Steve Curry, and Zack Urlocker. I pretty much had those thoughts that Marten answered


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More progress on High Performance MySQL, Second Edition
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Whew! I just finished a marathon of revisions. It's been a while since I posted about our progress, so here's an update for the curious readers.

Writing talks?
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I have two talks in the coming few weeks, that I’m still madly writing. I’ve come to the realisation that writing talks, really does take a lot of time (when you have a deadline). Especially, if you’re doing it my style - everytime I write a slide, and find something missing in the Wiki, I go ahead and fix it. So its not actually talk writing I’m doing, but expansion of our online documentation, and keeping it in check. That takes time.

  • Enhancing Competitiveness Through Technology - I’m giving this talk at the Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) Annual Conference 2007. Their conference is themed around “Enhancing Competitiveness Through Technology & Law Reforms ? The Next 50 Years” and is on the 19-20 November 2007, at the KL Convention Centre. My talk is on the 20th, as I’ll be on a plane on the 19th. This is targeted

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High Performance MySQL, Second Edition: Schema Optimization and Indexing
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I've been trying to circle back and clean up things I left for later in several chapters of High Performance MySQL, second edition. This includes a lot of material in chapter 4, Schema Optimization and Indexing. At some point I'll write more about the process of writing this book, and what we've done well and what we've learned to do better, but for right now I wanted to complete the picture of what material we have on schema, index, and query optimization. The last two chapters I've written about (Query Performance Optimization and Advanced

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Organizing High Performance MySQL, 2nd Edition
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I mentioned earlier that I'd blog about progress on the book as we go. It's not only progress on the book itself -- I want to write about the process of writing, because I think it's very interesting and relevant to software engineering. I'm finding a lot of the work in writing a book comes from some of the same things that make software hard: coordinating work, deciding what should go where, and so on.

MySQL miniconf @ LCA 2007; Paddy?s interview; Connector/PHP
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MySQL MiniConf at linux.conf.au 2007
This implies I’m coming to linux.conf.au 2007 in Sydney next January. What’s more is that during the MiniConfs, we’ve got one for MySQL. Its on January 15th, and we’ve just put out the call for participation/papers. You have about eight (8) days left to submit a paper. So submit your tales of deployment, conference presentations, and I believe we’re even willing to accept “hand’s on” hacking sessions (ala what happened at MySQL Camp). Keep the wiki page handy, and submit goodies to mysql-miniconf[AT]mysql[dot]com.

Interview with Paddy


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Interview with Si Chen, of opentaps
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Si Chen, lead/core developer for opentaps (formerly known as Sequioa ERP), talked with us recently, and there’s an interview available. opentaps is an Enterprise Resource Planning solution, which is rather scalable and has a lot of functionality. It uses MySQL, of course. Give it a twirl!

Do you use MySQL for your application that you develop? Want to talk about it? Drop me a line at colin[AT]mysql.com.

Red Hat Magazine?s focus on Asia
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Red Hat Magazine this month (well, okay, last month, I’m clearing out my tabs), has a feature on Linux and Asia. Of interest were:

  • What does open source mean in India? - an interview with Javed Tapia (Director, Red Hat India), showing why India finds OSS important (software costs too much), how localisation works, and a bit about Red Hat India.
  • Asia, the questions we ask - a great read, written by Michael Tiemann about his experiences in Asia. A question of interest: “What will be Singapore’s role in the technology industry of the 21st century?” I think thats the question most countries want the answer to, be it Malaysia or
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Showing entries 1 to 16

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