A day with Michael Zinner – Architect of MySQL Workbench

Following A day with Jan Kneschke – Architect of MySQL Proxy, today I’m with Michael Zinner in Vienna, Austria. Michael is Team Lead of the MySQL GUI tools team at MySQL.

I met Michael two years ago the 2006 MySQL Users Conference. We had communicated prior to that and I’d even used his very successful DB Designer a number of years prior to this. The present project of the GUI team is the MySQL Workbench which is a beta release.

Again, I find a key MySQL developer using a Mac, this time as the primary OS of choice. Unfortunately however the current version of MySQL Workbench is Windows only (Linux/Mac to be released next), so Parallels and Windows Visualization are used. He uses Microsoft Visual Studio for development and it was interesting to know the level of modularization necessary to support the windows version including a .Net C# front end and C++/.Net wrapper to the underlying C++ code base. The additional layers not necessary for Linux/Mac.

I observed a number of most appropriate Mac productivity tools for the beginner in me including PathFinder rather then Finder,
iStat menu, Adobe Lightroom and grab for screen prints ( which I knew about but have not tried). Top regular websites included www.tuaw.com The unofficial Apple Weblog, www.appleinsider.com, www.macrumors.com and www.engadget.com.

I did however have a difficult time checking my email, because the keyboard was in German, and as I touch type I wasn’t looking when typing. ‘:’ ‘/’ were not as expected, and ‘z’ was where ‘y’ was, making it difficult to spell MySQL.

Discussions of the MySQL acquisition again included possible concerns, even more so as Micheal leads a team of developers across various countries and agreements.

On a lighter side, I love my tech toys, most recently a new max spec’d Macbook, the latest released Canon 40D camera just recently after becoming available, and an Apple iPhone on Day 1. Michael has a new tech toy, A Red One, and this bets any new toy hands down by a long way.

I’m looking forward to hearing more during his 2008 MySQL Conference presentations and results of the great work with MySQL Workbench.