I wish I could realistically attend this. They are holding a tribute to Jim Gray, the famous database researcher. Jim has been lost at sea. We cannot conclude he is dead, though it becomes increasingly difficult to find an explanation for his disappearance. Mike Stonebraker, of Postgresql fame, will give a talk on “Why Jim Got the Turing Award.” Should be interesting.
I have written about Jim quite a bit here: Jim Gray missing at sea, What is infinite storage? , Science in an exponential world, That’s why I tinker, A “Measure of Transaction Processing” 20 Years Later, and so on.
Of all database researchers, Jim is the one who has had the biggest impact on my research and my teaching. Indeed, the cool thing about Jim is that he did not work on abstract nonsense. You can actually take his papers, and give the gist of them to your students, and you will have helped your students a lot.