MySQL Founding Father Sails Into the Sunset

It's commonplace, perhaps even de rigueur, for company executives to say their goodbyes when someone snatches up their firm mdash indeed, if we sold our share for eleventy-billion dollars, we'd probably be inclined to take a long vacation too. This wasn't so, however, for MySQL, where the company execs kept right on going post-sale — at least until recently.

According to Sun's MySQL Community Relations chief, co-founder David Axmark — reportedly the driving force behind making MySQL an Open Source project — has decided to take his leave and find a more relaxed atmosphere in which to work, less than a year after Sun acquired the company for a reported $1 billion. Axmark has been instrumental in MySQL's success, heading up engineering, IT, and community relations at different junctures in MySQL's past, more recently serving as a spokesperson of sorts, providing a press face for the company and rubbing elbows with other Open Source initiatives. Sun's spokesman described Axmark as "an important figurehead" who's departure is "a sad moment," while maintaining that the effect on MySQL is nominal, saying "the day-to-day impact is low."

According to Sun, Axmark's departure is the result of dissatisfaction with "mundane things" — traditional corporate activities including expense reports and company-regulated travel, as well as being assigned a Sun email account. His resignation letter is reported to have read "I HATE all the rules that I need to follow, and I also HATE breaking them," a bit stronger sentiment than one would expect over having to itemize one's Mu Shu pork. The letter went on to say that he wanted to work with MySQL and Sun on "a less formal basis," noting that he is "better off in smaller organizations." November 10 will be his final day with the company.

Also curious are recent reports, confirmed by Sun, that fellow co-founder Michael Widenius is on rocky terms with the company, a future Sun's spokesman described as "hard to predict."

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