UKOUG 2008 – Arrival and Tuesday

Posted in: Technical Track

I arrived to the conference at yesterday around lunch time. I was supposed to come on Sunday but I was delayed because of my UK visa renewal. In fact, I almost had to cancel it completely but the world is not without good people who were able to magically help speeding up the process.

Unfortunately, I’ve been on the road for the 42 hours or so which includes about 8 hours drive to the UK High Commission in Canberra and then back to Sydney airport. Then the flight to London with stop-over in Singapore — way too long to be reasonably enjoyable. From London it’s a coach to Birmingham and finally after quick check-in at Jury’s Inn and shower, I was here — “fresh and rested”.

My first presentation was supposed to be today at 16:30 but I wasn’t sure if I would make it on time or not so we decided to keep Gregory Guillou as he volunteered anyway to substitute me in case I wouldn’t get a visa (thanks Gregory!). Well, turns out that I would be able to help and having couple people on stage (assuming they know what they talking about) is better than one. ;-)

When I realized the issue with my visa, we also started to think about options for the masterclass on the last day of the conference and we had a great idea of setting up a remote presentation bridge UK-Australia with couple Oakies on the stage locally. Those brave volunteers were Michael Moller, aka M2, and Moans Nogood. In fact, I think they might still pop up on Friday and I’m sure it would be good fun so please drop by.

The presentation yesterday went pretty well except that we obviously had to skip all the demo’s as it was 45 minutes and the original presentation was for 1.5-2 hours slot. In my experience, it’s tough to follow someone’s else slides but Gregory did a good job. It was also his first conference speaking experience as far as I know and I hope he would consider doing it more often — he has lots to share. I had nothing better to do than to play with the laser pointer but I took the liberty to answer few questions and add few details — in the end, why would I sit on the stage then!?

Alright, back to the conference now. You should be able to find me in few places – OakTable, Pythian booth or wandering between the halls as well as sitting on few session, I hope. You can catch me on the phone as well if you want to meet me but don’t see me around — text me at +44 7901581915.

Oh, almost forgot to say that I had great evening last night and it was a pleasure to catch up with everyone at the Focus Pubs and later and the Tap & Spile. I should mention that Scottish table was my favorite at the Focus Pubs as they had the best drinks around (what a surprise, Thomas!). I should also share my disappointment in Tap & Spile this year — their beer selection wasn’t great this time and they closed down the downstairs area doing some painting job — bad timing guys! I should say that I survived until midnight after this loooong day for me and this morning looks great (so far).

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About the Author

What does it take to be chief technology officer at a company of technology experts? Experience. Imagination. Passion. Alex Gorbachev has all three. He’s played a key role in taking the company global, having set up Pythian’s Asia Pacific operations. Today, the CTO office is an incubator of new services and technologies – a mini-startup inside Pythian. Most recently, Alex built a Big Data Engineering services team and established a Data Science practice. Highly sought after for his deep expertise and interest in emerging trends, Alex routinely speaks at industry events as a member of the OakTable.

4 Comments. Leave new

Log Buffer #126: a Carnival of the Vanities for DBAs
December 5, 2008 1:04 pm

[…] Here are Alex Gorbachev’s thoughts on UKOUG Tuesday. […]

Lukas Vysusil
December 5, 2008 3:10 pm

Big respect for taking the trip Alex! You looked incredibly fresh despite the long hours in the sky.


If it’s the quality of the beer you’re interested in, then next time you make it to Birmingham, then it would be the Wellington that I’d recommend!


UKOUG Conference Tech & EBS 2009 — The Place to Be! | Pythian Group Blog
October 22, 2009 9:42 am

[…] I feel like I haven’t been at the UKOUG Conferences for years even though I did come to the UKOUG Conference 2008. This conference is something special for me — it’s the first conference I attended and […]


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