A $2.7 billion rival to Oracle and Microsoft has signed on 1 million developers to learn how to use its databases better (MDB)

Dev Ittycheria MongoDB CEO

  • MongoDB University, a free online training program from $2.7 billion database company MongoDB, has surpassed 1 million registrations.
  • MongoDB has been gaining traction with developers as the company looks to take on more established rivals like Oracle and Microsoft.
  • The accessibility of MongoDB University has made the platform easier to learn, at the same time the program is getting more popular.

More than 1 million people have registered for courses teaching how to use MongoDB, the database company that's gaining traction with developers even as it gains ground on Oracle and Microsoft.

The company told Business Insider on Thursday that MongoDB University, a series of free online courses teaching users how to use the open source database platform, has surpassed 1 million registrations.

The increasing popularity of MongoDB University has helped the platform, which was founded in 2007, take off with developers as an alternative to Oracle and Microsoft's older and more established database programs, which were originally created to deal with more rigid types of data.

According to Stack Overflow's annual developer's survey, MongoDB is the fourth most popular database, behind Oracle's MySQL, Microsoft's SQL server, and PostgreSQL. The company says that more than 40 million people have downloaded MongoDB so far.

The company sees the success as a sign of its traction with developers — and of how MongoDB is becoming a desirable skill for anybody trying to further their career.

'We have examples of people in small countries who are trying to level themselves up to improve their career opportunity. We have large enterprises using nothing but MongoDB University to train their team. And this is because we decided to invest in making it as easy as possible to learn how to use MongoDB," Vice President of Education Shannon Bradshaw told Business Insider.

Filming during Hurricane Sandy

MongoDB University was started by a small team of five people in 2012 — with some complications.

The first set of courses were set to be filmed and uploaded in October 2012. When Hurricane Sandy hit, though the storm's power outages prevented the New York-based company from making the rest of the videos.

But the team still wanted to find a way to get the rest of the lessons online, as students around the world were waiting for courses. To upload videos, the company's then-vice president of education used a generator, his cell phone, and a camera rig to film each video and send the footage to the company's video team. MongoDB's co-founder went to a nearby Starbucks — the only place with power — and filmed videos there.

Since it's first year, the number of employees on the MongoDB University team has increased from five to more than 20.

"I think that is indicative of the way the entire company is really behind the idea of MongoDB University and the lengths the company was willing to go at the very outset get it off the ground," Bradshaw said.

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