Jim Starkey, the original creator of InterBase which became Firebird, just made it publicly known that he now works for MySQL AB.

My company, Netfrastructure, Inc., has been acquired by MySQL, AB. As
part of the agreement, I will be working full time for MySQL. I expect
to lurk on the architecture list from time to time and may contribute
the occasional wolf-o-gram, but I will not be taking an active part in
Firebird development. Although Ann will work for MySQL, part time,
translating from wolf to English, she will continue to be active in the
Firebird project.

My decision to join MySQL has almost nothing to do with Firebird and everything to do with Netfrastructure. The Netfrastructure platform represents what I feel about contemporary computing hardware and future application requirements, and has been the center of my technical heart and soul for six year. Some aspects of Netfrastructure technology have already been contributed to the Vulcan project, but Firebird and Netfrastructure are architecturally incompatible. An attempt to integrate the technologies would be unlikely to meet the goals of either project.

MySQL and Firebird have never seen each other as competitors and I doubt this will change in the future. The projects have different open source philosophies, different technologies, different customer bases, and different sweet spots. The ideas behind the two projects are, happily, public and available to all. If MySQL and Firebird compete, it is only competition in offering the best possible support to their respective customers.

I am pleased to have had the opportunity to finish the Vulcan project. The combination of Vulcan SMP and architecture combined the rich feature set of Firebird 2 will make a solid release and a superb platform for future development.

I wish the Firebird project all the best in years to come. And if you need an opinion, please feel free to call.

Site editor note: Is this your first contact with Firebird? I invite you to read the “Get to know Firebird in 2 minutes” paper and find out why Firebird is so special!