MongoDB World 2018 Review


MongoDB World 2018 was held on June 26 and June 27th in New York. In addition to the conference, I also attended the MongoDB Customer Advisory Board on June 28th. My time there was split up in to 3 parts:

1) The Advocacy Summit, an all day meetup with the MongoDB Masters, of which I’m honored to be a part of, and some amazing advocates from around the world who are using MongoDB in cool and exciting ways.

2) The conference, this conference was extra special for me as it was my first time speaking at an event of this size! I talked about our journey to automating MongoDB deploys at Paychex. Slides can be found here.

3) The Customer Advisory Board, this is a meetup of customers, large and small, who utilize MongoDB, we got to hear about some of the interesting problems MongoDB is thinking about and got to comment on our uses of certain MongoDB products

The Advocate Summit:

The Advocate Summit was an event put together by the MongoDB Advocacy Team, Mike Lynn, Global Director of Developer Advocacy (, Joe Drumgoole, Head of Developer Advocacy EMEA ( and MC’ed by Jay Gordon, Cloud Developer Advocate(

Topics ranged from how MongoDB built their Cloud DBaaS, Atlas, presented by the Product Manager for Atlas, Andrew Davidson, to an informative “Ask Anything” session with MongoDB Founder and CTO, Eliot Horowitz (, to the startup accelerator program by Francesca Krihely (, to a Q&A with all of the MongoDB Product Managers. In addition to the MongoDB speakers there were sessions by Jenna Zeigen from Slack ( on managing your manager, and a great session by fellow MongoDB Master, Ken Alger of Treehouse ( on how to use MongoDB to enhance your career. The day finished off with Brandy Morgan of Creators Code ( giving a great talk on teaching people to be teachers.


Pictured from Left to Right:

Leandro Domingues of Cluster Consultoria Brazil (, Roderigo Nascimento of NetApp (, Jay Gordon of MongoDB (, Juan Roy Cuoto of Grupo Undanet of Spain (, Jorge Puente Sarrín of Rebel Mouse of Peru ( and Me, Mike Grayson of Paychex (

The conference:

The conference itself was great, as I mentioned earlier, I got my first, of I hope many, opportunities to speak at a conference of this size. I talked about our journey to automating MongoDB deploys at Paychex. Slides can be found here. I was lucky in that 3 of my Paychex colleagues took the time out of their conference to attend my talk. Thanks Christine Rebekka Swanson , Suzanne E Sarr and Andrea Lee Dougherty your support was awesome I was happy that my presentation was early in the conference so I could get it done and enjoy the rest of the conference! I had a lot of follow up questions and was approached by fellow Operations Engineers at some large companies that have had the same issues as we had. Here’s a few pictures that were taken during my talk!



After my talk, it was time for the keynote! There were many exciting announcements, it was hard to pick a favorite, so in no particular order here are the highlights: Multi-Document ACID transactions in MongoDB 4.0! MongoDB Stitch (BackEndaaS) made generally available in the cloud! MongoDB Compass now has an Aggregation Pipeline Builder! Global Clusters in Atlas, more and more regions in AWS, Azure and GCP. MongoDB Mobile!

With this year’s conference only being one day and me speaking during one of the sessions, I was limited in to the amount of sessions I could attend. However, I did make it to the following sessions:

Redhat Sponsored Talk: on Deploying MongoDB to Enterprise Kubernetes (aka OpenShift)
Time for a Change Stream – Using MongoDB Change Streams to Version your Database
MongoDB Meet Chaos Monkey
Simplified Encryption & Key Management for MongoDB
User Administration With You – Integrating LDAP with MongoDB
Free the DBA: Building Chat Bots to Triage, Monitor and Manage MongoDB Deployments from any device
Spark and Machine Learning

These covered some of the key takeaways I look to get from each and every MongoDB World:

A new and easier way to deploy
Evaluating newer features that we don’t yet use at Paychex
Learning about a part of MongoDB that I’ll soon need to know deeply
Ways to make my job easier (and all of Paychex Data Services jobs easier) in supporting MongoDB
Learning about something new that we’re not yet looking at in Paychex to get ahead of the curve

MongoDB CAB:

The end of my MongoDB week was at the MongoDB Customer Advisory Board. The CAB is a place where MongoDB customers large and small come to talk about how they’re using MongoDB, what they would like to see changed, as well as a chance for MongoDB Product Managers to get feedback on some of the items that they’re looking at. After the CAB all of the Product Managers, and MongoDB executives and the CAB Members went to Quality Meats in Manhattan. This gave us time for more 1-1 chats with each other. During this time I was able to talk with the Product Managers of MongoDB Mobile, MongoDB Stitch and the MongoDB Drivers team, I have a few action items from those conversations that I’m following up with them on. Overall, it’s great to get the opportunity to have these kinds of chats with the people who are building MongoDB, I realize how lucky I am to have this chance.

Thanks for reading!

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