The past few years of MySQL conferences...
Every year since Oracle's acquisition of MySQL in 2009, there's been some uncertainty around the annual MySQL conference, which used to be co-organized by MySQL AB (in charge of content) and O'Reilly (conference logistics). As my career unfolded during those years, I've seen relatively close how the conferences of 2010 and 2011 happened. As there's been a lot of re-structuring in the community around various forks and new employers, I've felt that the annual conference was the one thing that kept us together, the one common forum where everyone would meet. For this reason I have been personally very engaged (as have many others) in helping O'Reilly get through the conferences of 2010 and 2011 and I'm very grateful to Tim, Gina and the rest of the O'Reilly team that they have provided us with this forum and gravitation point for the past two years.
During this years conference it was openly speculated that it would be the last O'Reilly MySQL conference. EnterpriseDB being the main sponsor at a MySQL conference... kind of gave you a hint. With Oracle constantly boycotting and refusing to sponsor the conference of its own community, the business justification for O'Reilly to keep going just wasn't there anymore.
So once again we were facing uncertainty of what to do next year.
When we have been discussing alternatives for the next MySQL conference, I always maintained there are 3 things from which people recognize the MySQL conference: time, location and name. So I was encouraging people to come up with solutions that would maintain those 3 variables as constant as possible.