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Status and future of spatial extensions



I haven't monitored MariaDB development closely, neither I tracked
what's happening in the MySQL sandbox, so I'm hoping to catch up by
asking questions here.

I'm interested in the Spatial Extensions.
So, I looked around the KB and the documentation and I found a few
pages: general overview [1], 5.3 features [2] and page about plans
[3]. I've looked into JIRA issues and recent commits too.
Still, I don't see a clear big picture about the current status,
roadmap and developers of the Spatial Extensions.

Could anyone shed more light on the Spatial part of the MariaDB
project, where it is now, where it is going, who is behind the wheel,

What is (if any) the relation with geo-spatial development in MySQL?
Is that correct understanding that MySQL and MariaDB follow separate
paths, thus the GIS implementations go separately and in future they
may seriously diverge and become no longer equivalent drop-in

[1] https://mariadb.com/kb/en/gis-functionality/
[2] https://mariadb.com/kb/en/the-maria53-gis-tree-on-launchpad/
[3] https://mariadb.com/kb/en/mariadb-plans-gis/

Best regards,
Mateusz  Loskot, http://mateusz.loskot.net
"Participation in this whole process is a form of torture" ~~ Szalony