Tuesday, November 02, 2010

QA at Continuent. A serendipitous job.

Unexpected road A few days ago, I left the MySQL team at Oracle, after more than 4 years of work dedicated mostly to the MySQL community.
Someone will probably remember that, when I joined MySQL in 2006, I started my work in the QA team. It was no coincidence. My previous work as a consultant was very much focused on database development quality, even when my customers had approached me for different reasons.
Let's be frank. I am a minority. It's not common to find someone who is passionate about QA. I am aware of being a rare bird, who likes testing and bug searching, and doing all the little steps that all together improve the overall quality of a software system.
I had been thinking about my passion lately, and I often caught myself thinking why in my job at MySQL I let things slip away so much from my ambition of tackling some hard technical problems.
I was more or less in this frame of mind when I met by chance an old acquaintance, Robert Hodges, CEO of Continuent and a fine technologist whom I respect and admire. And I was astonished to hear him asking me if I knew a good candidate for a position of QA manager for Continuent.
You can guess the rest of the story. I told him that I indeed had a candidate, and the next day we went to dinner together, and talked the most hackish and refreshing talk that I have had in years with Ed Archibald, the CTO (oh, and the steaks were great too!)
A few days after that, Robert and Ed organized a demo of Continuent technology for me, and I was hooked.

There was, indeed, an uncommon problem to solve. I had received offers for very good positions at three other companies, and one more had asked me if I wanted to consider working for them. As all the offering parts are friends, this fact did put me in a difficult position. Every offer was very intriguing and exciting, and in the end I had to take a choice, leaving one happy and three disappointed friends in the field. After careful choice, I chose Continuent, where I will start as Director of Quality Assurance on November 15th.
Fortunately for me, the three other friends are real friends, and they took the refusal graciously. They knew from the beginning that they had competition, and they knew that they could win or lose for reasons that they could not fully control. And indeed the main reason for choosing Continuent is the challenge of developing a beautiful technology that will eventually take the world by storm. (Or so it's the general plan. It's too early to make claims, as I haven't started getting acquainted with the technology yet, but it feels good).

What now? I have some tentative plans that I need to consolidate in the near future:
  • Taking some vacation. I am already one day into this first part;
  • Getting familiar with the technology that I will help improving;
  • Getting acquainted with my new colleagues, for which I will have a splendid occasion at the company meeting that will happen soon in Stuttgart;
  • Learning some new technology, both in development and in a more strict QA field;
  • Setting up my new laptop, which will hopefully come before I start the new job;
  • Talking at conferences. I have already committed to talking at the UKOUG in Birmingham, on December 1st, and more will come.
  • Resuming my blogging at full speed. I have a mental drawer full of ideas, and I only need to transfer them to the keyboard.
And probably I will also start playing with the new technologies that I have been reading about in the last months but I haven't had time to pursue. Either way, I feel refreshed and ready for the next battle.
Thanks, Continuent, for this great opportunity!


David Shrewsbury said...


Baron said...

I think you will be great at this job. I hope you have a lot of fun, too!

Antony said...


Kay said...

I'm happy for you that you found something exciting! :)

All the best!

Unknown said...

Congrats, buddy! :)

P. Virsunen said...

Congrats! Very exciting. They just announced today new funding and new CEO, http://www.continuent.com/news/press/962-continuentsecuresfundingappointsnewceo

Unknown said...

Congratulations. Best of luck

Anonymous said...


Kentoku said...


db geek chick said...

Congratulations!!! Robert Hodges tries to make it to our sfmysqlmeetup so I've met & talked to him quite a bit. In fact I've been meaning to bug him about multi-source replication & tungsten. He is so lucky to be working with you!

Hope your vacation is fab!

hingo said...

Hey Giuseppe! I used to be passionate about QA too before joining MySQL!

Good luck with Continuent and Robert. Interesting, user friendly, technology.

Mark Callaghan said...

This should be an interesting change for you. Continuent can solve hard problems for a lot of database deployments.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations! Sounds like should be great fun.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your new job!

Sergei said...

Congratulation! Have fun!

Ronald Bradford said...

Way to go Giuseppe. Best of luck and hope to see you around again soon!

Giuseppe Maxia said...

Thanks everyone for the good wishes.
I will stay in touch.

Josh Berkus said...


Congratulations! Does this mean I'll see you in the Bay Area?

--Josh Berkus

Theory said...


So, think you might have a use for MyTAP at the new gig? It could use some love.