With Oracle purchasing Sun, there's been some fretting over whether or not the company will harm MySQL (which Sun bought a few years back), as it's certainly a competitor to Oracle's core database product. My guess is that Oracle's a lot more interested in owning Java than harming MySQL, and am hopeful that Oracle recognizes the benefits of supporting MySQL. But, even if the company does go in the other direction, it's difficult to see much to worry about. The demand and opportunity for an open source database is so big, that others would quickly pop up (and, of course, there are already other open source databases out there -- some of which are already considered superior to MySQL). However, even more interesting is the news (pointed to us by Tim Lee
) that many of MySQL's main developers have left the company (or are planning to), and one of MySQL's founders is already looking to hire other key MySQL developers
to fork the software and keep on developing the software. Sometimes it's pretty difficult for a fork to get the attention it needs to survive, but certainly it can work, especially if there are concerns about the direction of the original product.