This year built on last year, and then some. I was able to go for the length of the conference, and participated in several new things. Here's where I tell you all about it.
Cool Things I Experienced at PyCon
Cool Things I Learned About at PyCon
Talks I Attended
Talks I'm Going to Watch
Other Activities at PyCon
The proposal interface on the PyCon site worked great. I put up a summary and an outline for each of the talks. I got good feedback from reviewers on the Program Committee. In the end I killed several of the proposals before the committee meetings started, had several make it through, and had two accepted. All in all, I learned that a good proposal is one that doesn't try to do too much, still covers something interesting, and is backed by solid knowledge.
After a while the committee started the first round of review meetings. We met in IRC at designated times, and discussed each proposal for several minutes before everyone voted yea/nay. At the beginning of the discussion anyone could volunteer as a champion for a proposal and would have the floor for a couple minutes to make a case for accepting the proposal. A few proposals were easy to eliminate. Most were good, however. A few proposals spawned lengthy or heated discussions. Several required the committee chair to make a decision when voting was close. It was a fascinating process and I attended as many meetings as I could.
After several two-a-day weeks we moved into the next round, thunderdome. The committe chair, Jacob Kaplan-Moss, grouped the remaining talks by subject, with groups of 2 to 5 proposals. We had similar review meetings, but this time we'd indicate which talks in the group we thought should be accepted, instead of just saying yea/nay. For small groupings we'd select 0-1 proposals. For some large groupings we'd select as many as 3. This also went on for weeks.
The experience here was fantastic. The committee was run well. The committee members were great. I got to know quite a few people in the community this way, and put faces to names when I got to Santa Clara.
Our schedule was grueling due to the massive volume of great proposals. We could have had double the tracks and still filled them all with great talks. All things considered, I think it turned out really well.
I moved forward with my speaking advice page, got access to put it up on the PyCon site, and helped organize a Q&A for speakers the night before the sessions started. Everyone in the community was really helpful in all of it and the meeting was a success because of that. It just reaffirmed my conviction that the Python community is amazing.
The language summit is where all the core developers that can make it get together in one big room during one of the tutorial days. They discuss current issues for the language that need decisions. One of the core developers chairs the meeting and conducts the discussion through an agenda that they've prepared ahead of time. It was great to be there, contribute to a small part of the discussion, and help with some extensive note-taking.
Speaking at PyCon
My interfaces talk was on Friday and I went in expecting to get through my slides too quickly, so I made an effort to slow it down. Unfortunately this had the wrong effect. I ended up having to cut my talk about 10 slides short and lost my Q&A time. As disappointing as that was, it was a good experience that paid off the next day.
My imports talk on Saturday went much better. Between my experience the day before, and my higher expertise with the subject matter, the talk went off great. I covered the material, finished right on time, and had good Q&A time. I also got a lot of positive feedback, which was encouraging. If I've lucky enough to get a proposal accepted, this year's experience will make a big difference.
Inaugural PyCon 5k
Sprinting on CPython
Guido was able to come the next day too, and he and I had a nice talk about imports and language transformations. The rest of the sprints I worked on the import system, particularly with things related to the importlib bootstrap (issue 2377), with most of my working going into issue 13959. Brett Cannon could only stay for one day of the sprints, but it was enough to talk about what needed to get done with the work surrounding importlib.
Getting to Know People
- The Art of Subclassing Raymond Hettinger (video)
- Stop Writing Classes Jack Diederich (video)
- Interfaces and Python Eric Snow (video)
- Static analysis of Python extension modules using GCC Dave Malcolm (video)
- Permission or Forgiveness? Alex Martelli (video)
- A resume-based WSGI Load Balancer Jim Fulton (video)
- Why PyPy by example Maciej Fijalkowski (video)
- How the PyPy JIT works Benjamin Peterson (video)
- Making Jython Faster and Better Jim Baker (video)
- Getting the Most Out of Python Imports Eric Snow (video)
- The Email Package: Past, Present, and Future R. David Murray (video)
- Mailman 3 Barry Warsaw (video)
- Patterns for building large Pyramid applications Carlos de la Guardia (video)
- Python, Linkers, and Virtual Memory Brandon Rhodes (video)
- Fast Test, Slow Test Gary Bernhardt (video)
There's so much more to PyCon than the little that I've covered. Every bit of it is awesome!
- Web Summit
- Open Spaces
- Expo Hall
- BoFs (Birds of a Feather)
- Lightning Talks
- Poster Session
- Job Fair
- Startup Row
- join the program committee - http://mail.python.org/mailman/listinfo/pycon-pc
- join the organizers - http://mail.python.org/mailman/listinfo/pycon-organizers
- propose a talk - CFP later this year (last year's CFP: https://us.pycon.org/2012/cfp/)
- on-site - https://us.pycon.org/2012/community/volunteer/onsite/
- bag stuffing - one of the seven wonders of PyCon
A more complete list: