What were your 3 favorite talks?
Lightning talks (17) IronPython implementation (17) Guido's Keynote (17) Python in Your Pocket: Python for Series 60 (14) Django supercharge web (13) The State of Dabo (11) Python Can Survive In The Enterprise (10) PyPy (10) Guido's history of python (9) Effective AJAX with TurboGears (9) Django How-To (6) Creating Presentations With Docutils and S5 (6) TurboGears How-to (5) Stackless Python in EVE Online (5) Packaging Programs with py2exe (5) Intro to PyParsing (5) Decimal for Beginners (5) Bram Cohen interview (5) The Rest Of The Web Stack (4) PySense: Humanoid Robots, a Wearable System, and Python (4) New Tools for Testing Web Applications with Python (4) Making Apples from Applesauce: The Evolution of cvs2svn (4) Unicode (3) Teaching Python - Anecdotes from the Field (3) State of Zope (3) Scripting .NET with IronPython (3) Bazaar-ng Distributed Version Control (3) An Interactive Adventure Game Engine Built Using Pyparsing (3) Agile Testing open space talk (3) State-of-the-art Python IDEs (2) Python Eggs (2) Osh shell (2) Internationalization (Chandler) (2) Desktop Application Programming With PyGTK and Glade (2) Chandler BoF (2) python tools for hydrologic modeling (1) What is Nabu (1) Virtual Collaboratory (1) Un-reinventing the Wheel: Some Lessons from Zope, Backported to Unix (1) The EWT BoF (betting $100M with Python) (1) Py-mycms (1) Plone KeyNote (1) Implementation of the Python Bytecode Compiler (1) Cuaima (1) Agile Documentation (1) python AST--BOF (1) wxPython BoF (6) tutorial: Agile Development (1) wxPython Tutorial (1) The tutorials rocked. (1) The web topics i liked because it's a pain-point for me, no talk in particular. (1)
What 3 topics should have been covered at PyCon?
Twisted (8) More on scientific computing with python (7) Using python in embedded/small devices (5) Database interfaces and ORMs (5) wxPython (3) Python on the Mac including PyObjC (3) Libraries (2) How to talk to non-technical decision makers about the benefits of python (2) Various python based revision control systems (1) Using Python in team development (locally and remotely) (1) Testing (1) SpreadModule (1) Some theory of compilers and how to implement a toy compiler in Python (1) Some innovative project with more exposure to the "under-the-hood" aspects. (1) Setuptools, eggs, and paste *technical* presentation (1) Security Issues (Secure Access/Encryption) (1) Review/comparision of IDEs (1) Python and high performance computing (1) Python and education (1) Pyrex/SWIG/Pyste/SIP, etc. (1) PyFLTK (now that it's at version >= 1.0) (1) Promoting Python (1) Programming Bluetooth products (1) Overview of gui toolkits available to developers (1) NumPy (1) Network Programming (1) More user-developed apps and end-user items (1) More on eggs, especially for beginners (1) More about money (1) Libraries/modules interfacing to services like maps.google.com etc (1) Jython (1) How to share your software, packaging for the CheeseShop (1) Grid computing with Python (1) Extending Editors with Python (1) Distutils (1) Cross-platform data synchronization (1) Component-based application development (1) Audio (1) Applications using various frameworks (1)
Wiki (Moin) Hacking (2) WebOff II (2) mod_python (1) Zope/Plone (1) Zope 3 Concepts (adapters, interfaces, view, events) (1) Zope 3 (1) WSGI (1) Trac (1) REST APIs (1) Panel discussion with web framework developers explaining why theirs is the best (1) Overview of web frameworks (yes, again) (1) Nevow (1) More django/turbogears/other web frameworks (1) Mod Python (1) Mashups (1) Creating Python Server Pages (Spyce or mod_python/GGI) (1) Cherry Py (1)
Usage of new/advanced python features (12) Python Best Practices (3) Design Patterns in Python (3) Anything Alex Martelli wants to talk about. (3) Advanced Python: metaclasses, descriptors, decorators (3) Strategies for integrating C and Python (2) Problems with python (2) Iterators and Generators (2) Ways to improve performance of Python code (1) Standard library gems/ unsung modules (1) Python Language perspective from non-Guido PEP members (1) Py3K (1) More on Python internals (1) Language howtos (I really enjoyed Alex Martelli's talk last year on itertools) (1) Getting started hacking python source (1) Decimal for Experts (1) Better Development Practices with Python (1) Being more productive with Python (1)
What 3 topics would you like to see repeated next year?
A Game-Free Introduction to PyGame (1) AJAX (1) AST (1) Agile Testing (3) An actual eggs presentation (1) Basic talk on good python programming practices (1) Bazaar-ng (1) Breadth and Depth of python (eg. Pysense) (1) Buildbot (1) Chandler-related talks (1) Dabo (3) Doctutils (1) Docutils development tutorial (1) Eggs (1) Eggs/Setuptools information/howto (1) Frameworks (1) Funding for projects (1) Further application development talks (1) Getting Started with wxPython (1) I would do a pyparsing follow-up if there is interest (1) Implementation of the Python Bytecode Compiler (1) Interpreter/Language changes, new implementations (1) IronPython (5) IronPython (more at basic level (e.g. forms, doing simple com scripting, etc) (1) Large scale systems (1) Lightning Talks (7) MIT Robotics project update (1) More Series 60 (1) More testing talks (1) More wxPython stuff (1) NerdBooks Party! :-) (1) New applications of python (1) Origins of Python for newcomers (1) Overview talks on the history and future of python (1) PyGTk (1) PyGame intro (1) PyParsing (1) PyPy (8) PySense (1) Python GUI Frameworks (1) Python Internals (1) Python Language from Guido's perspective (10) Python for Series 60 (1) Python in the Enterprise (anything showing Python rocking!) (1) Python on Mobile devices (1) Python on embedded systems like the Nokia S60 (1) Real-world examples: how Python is used in the workplace (1) SFWMI Hydrology project update (1) Scripting .NET with IronPython (1) State of Dabo (1) State of the Python Universe (1) Teaching Python (1) Testing (4) Testing and agile development (4) Twisted (3) Unicode (1) Unicode (1) py.* talks (1) py2exe (1) pysense (1) pysense: Humanoid Robots, a Wearable System, and Python (1) python games (1) python implementation talks (1) success stories from enterprise and high performance/demanding applications (1) tools available for developers (1) wxPython (3)
Ajax (1) Any web development talks (1) Anything TurboGears (1) Django (5) Frameworks - Django, Turbogears (1) General web topics (4) Plone (1) State of Zope (1) Turbogears (5) Updated presos on state of Django/TurboGears/WSGI/Rails/web.py/etc (1) Using Django to supercharge Web development (1) Web and application testing (1) Web app frameworks (2) Web applications (Django/Turbo gear/Webware) (1) Web development (Django) (1) Web frameworks (1) Web frameworks update (Django/TurboGears/Zope) (1) WebOff III (1) Zope 3 (1) Zope development (1) Zope-related talks (1)
Where did you stay?
91% Hotel (72) 4% Am local resident (3) 1% Hostel (1) 4% With friends (3)
If you stayed at a hotel other than the conference hotel, what was its name?
Crowne Plaza (1) Comfort Inn (1) Super 8 (1)
Would you recommend the hotel to other attendees?
What is your maximum per-person nightly room budget for accommodations?
21% $75 or less (15) 36% $100 (25) 21% $125 (15) 14% $150 (10) 6% $200 (4) 1% More than $200 (1)
If PyCon were not to be in Dallas TX, what 3 cities/regions would you prefer?
Washington DC (21) Chicago (21) San Francisco (15) Boston (14) New York City (13) Portland, OR (9) Seattle WA (7) Bay Area (7) San Antonio, TX (6) Las Vegas, NV (6) West Coast (5) Denver, CO (5) Austin, TX (5) San Diego, CA (4) New Orleans, LA (4) Midwest (4) East Coast (4) Kansas City, MO (3) Florida (3) Atlanta, GA (3) San Jose CA (2) Phoenix (2) Orlando, FL (2) North Carolina (2) Minneapolis (2) Los Angeles (2) California (2) Baltimore, MD (2) Virginia (1) Vancouver (1) Toronto, ON (1) Texas (1) Tampa, FL (ibid) (1) SoCal (1) San-Francisco (1) Rockwall, TX (1) RTP, NC (1) Northern VA (1) New Mexico (1) New England (1) Mars (1) Little Rock (1) Irvine, CA (1) Houston, TX (1) Fort Worth TX (1) Europe (1) Columbus, OH (1) Colorado (1) Atlantic City, NJ (1) Anywhere in Oregon (1) no preference (1)
Would you be interested in attending half-day (3-hour) tutorials next year?
32% False (24) 52% True (52)
How much would you be willing to pay for a half-day (3 hour) tutorial?
11% Nothing (7) 13% $25 (8) 34% $50 (21) 33% $100 (20) 8% $150 (5)
If yes, please list 3 tutorial subjects you would like to attend:
Django (8) Web development (7) Agile development and testing (7) Advanced Language Features (7) wxPython (5) Twisted (5) TurboGears (4) Text/Data Processing (4) Scientific computing (4) Advanced wxPython (4) Python on embedded devices (3) GUI Development (3) Zope (2) SQLAlchemy and ORM tools (2) Python and Databases (2) Plone (2) Network programming, with case study/mock application. (2) IronPython (2) Introduction to Object Oriented Programming (2) Dabo (2) Advanced Zope3 (2) Advanced Twisted (2) Zope dev setup (1) Zope 3 Component Development Practices (1) Tk GUI building (1) Python gaming (1) Python 301: An unscripted Q&A (should have pre-con questions/topics) (1) Python 103 -special topics (i.e. iterators and generators) (1) Python & XML (1) PyObjC (1) One of the popular web frameworks (1) Object Oriented Design Patterns (1) NumPy (1) New features of Python for 2.5 (and a review of new features for 2.4) (1) Mod Python (1) MetaProgramming (1) Managing Projects with Python (1) Making effective use of WSGI (1) Library Design/Structure (1) Latest Dev Practices (1) Large scale systems (1) Intro to Audio Synthesis? (or something like that) (1) Intermediate Python (1) Implementing pluggable architectures (1) Extending & integrating trac (1) Embedding python as a scripting language, with case study/mock application. (1) Creating Cocoa apps in PyObjC (1) Constraint Based Local Searching (1) Building SWIG/ctypes Interfaces to other people's code (1) Beginning Graphics a la GTK (1) AJAX with Python (1)
The wxPython tutorial was great! I want a sequel.
The Agile tutorial wasn't really a tutorial, but more like a regular talk but longer. They gave a brief overview of a lot of testing technologies rather than actually teaching any single one. Useful, but not really a tutorial.
I think the interview idea for the keynote was not a very good idea. It was a bit boring and not very effective.
Some talks didn't have any coordinators so presenters were a bit lost at start.
overall really good. i have been to oscon twice and the level of service has been about the same. they had wireless problem there one year also and still throughout the conference.
i like marriot, the beds are really comfy, would love to have them get a reduced/free internet from the room rate.
better way to guage interest in specific talks to guage room size (oscon struggled with this also)
there seems to be two different descriptions of each talk on the web site.. one in a wiki and one in a db. the wiki one was much easier to read.
Less tippy, spilly food (pasta, soup). We need to figure the wireless situation out, it was obviously horrible. Otherwise, I really liked the hotel. I wasn't sure why the Plone thing was a keynote. I kind of liked the friday+weekend situation, because otherwise my work tends to intrude.
I would like to see more about approaching a collaborative approach to combining some of the best features of the various frameworks available. Too often, I feel, each project is so closely held to the ego of the original creators. I think that this is a great detriment to the advancement of the frameworks themselves as well as the usability of the language as a whole. Perhaps a talk about comperitive frameworks, a meeting of the creators of the various frameworks to discuss "lesson's learned" and sharing (what a new concept, especially for open source)...
The tutorials all started at ground zero, and went from there. I don't need an intro on most topics, I want to learn advanced features of technologies I already work with.
I wish the talks were fewer but longer, more tutorial in nature. Some were very rushed.
I thought the tutorials were the most productive time I had at Pycon. I would like to see more and, perhaps, even have some during the main conference (with limited enrollment). There were many sessions where none of the talks appealed to me and I would have rather paid more to take more tutorials.
It would have been nice to have an exhibit room for vendors, even a small one. I liked the lightning talks. I liked the tables set up in the main conf. Having wireless was great, not sure what could be done to help the bandwidth without spending a ton of money. For some reason the sound system kept getting worse in the main hall over the course of conference not better. The feedback got to be really annoying and loud at the end. All in all I thought it was a well organized conference and I plan to attend next year. The price was very reasonable.
The wireless networking coverage sucked. Unreliable, and frequently unavailable.
Network was almost "non-existant". I would refuse to pay them for the service received!
Maybe having a sprinting area (in the staging room?) on tutorial day would be good. The space is already reserved.
It is still important to have both wired and wireless... especially when the capabilities of the network staff are as limited as those used by the Marriott Hotel used for PyCon 2006.
I attended the wxWidgets tutorial, and was slightly disappointed. Too much time spent on basics (how an app interacts with window manager, events, etc), and full specification of various widgets, and not enough time spent on the key elements of GUI design (e.g. no mention at all about MVC techniques). Even important things like sizers seemed very rushed.
All the APs were on channel 1.
More infrastructure for people to coordinate out-of-conference activities (dinners, drinking, hanging out with people doing interesting things, etc). (I guess people could have created a wiki page, but it wasn't clear that doing so would have been acceptable/encouraged).
Other topics for next year (why do you limit us to only 3?): "How to manage a 100,000+ line python application" "Python for Security Practitioners" (I'll be submitting a talk proposal on this :-)) "State of Python Operating Systems" (e.g. unununium.org and cleese.sf.net) "Guerilla's Guide to Getting Python into your Company" PyGame (or python media/graphics in general)
My first PyCon. Really enjoyed it. Could be longer (1-2 days longer). Love the sprint concept. Network needs to work better.
The rooms need more power strips! That would have helped my experience immensely. In the main conference hall, there were power strips only for about a third of the seats. That was unacceptable.
The tutorials were okay this year, however they could be much better. The topics seemed a little broad for three hours.
I'm interested in _giving_ tutorials (again) next year. These answers are based on if you decide not to ask me to return.
Another thought, and I'm not sure if this is a subject for a talk or a tutorial, would be some 'live code' that uses some of the more esoteric features of Python. (Metaclass functions, decorators, etc) Rather than the contrived examples, I'd like to see situations where these features solve a problem that can't easily be solved by other means.
Many of the speakers seemed unprepared -- in some cases I really felt like they were not being respectful of my time by just how poorly prepared they were. It was clear that many talks hadn't been practiced (or cursorily if they were) -- I've been to many conferences (and PyCon last year) and it felt like there was a substantial difference this year as compared to years past. I'm not sure what could be done to remedy this, but something needs to be done.
The new tables/seating style was both good and bad -- I feel as though it made it less lively because people were less inclined to pay attention to the speakers because it was so much easier to have your laptop out.
The hotel was far too isolated -- to get around one really needs a car because the area is pedestrian unfriendly and the sidewalks that are there are frequently topped by scores of birds on the powerlines making it, um, an adventure in looking up and dodging while walking. Amusing until they don't miss (trust me ;) So, either more frequent shuttles (and better info on the surrounding area) are needed or a less suburban location would be preferable.
For all of the bad stuff above, I really did enjoy the conference and this year's venue felt much more fitting to the size of the PyCon crowd than the D.C. location did. Thanks to all the volunteers who put in all of the hard work!!
-Wireless was terrible. I'm sure you're aware of it already. This really needs to be fixed or next year may be my last PyCon. I usually need to have access to my work while on travel and this is a must.
-Lunch was great, snacks--less so. Why was there no coffee before the keynotes, which were 1 1/2 hours? I would be willing to spend an extra $10 on registration to have coffee and breakfast foods available before and after the keynote, but even just having them before would be nice.
-It would be nice to know in advance what talks will be available after the Con in audio/video. Several talks I wanted to see overlapped, and it would be nice to know if one of them would be available at a later date. Perhaps also leaving a couple slots open for encore presentations if the presenters are interested (this happened with Ian Bicking's eggs talk)
This was my first PyCon and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It couldn't have been much better (short of actually meeting Alex Martelli-but meeting Anna Martelli Ravenscroft more than made up for that ;-))
The keynote talk on Plone was bad. It was like the speakers hadn't prepared anything at all.
The talk by AG Interactive, Python in the Enterprise was embarassingly bad. Essentially, they said "Python is great. We used python, but we can't tell you anything else because it's proprietary."
Python for Series 60 was also too much advocacy and too little technical detail.
The keynotes should not be tied to a particular product, IMO. Aside from that problem, the Plone Keynote was terrible. The presenters may have built a fine product, but they have no ability to talk about it intelligently. The interview with Bram Cohen keynote wasn't much better. Guido's keynote was great.
Some of the sessions were rather lame. If only there was a test for presentation ability that presenters would have to pass to get a slot. The PyGTK presentation for example, was just awful. It belonged in a Open Space Talk, not a a talk with official billing. Perhaps all presenters should show up a day early and spend a few hours with Kevin Dangoor about how to present!
Tutorial proceedings were a great buy for $25, keep doing this (if tutorial presenters will permit)
Were the tutorials intended for beginners? IF so then that should be clear. Maybe the tutorial should have a "difficulty" rating. We are a rather experienced group of pythonistas so we didn't get lots out of "Text and Data Processing", for example, but I got tons out of "Agile development and testing"
I think talks and tutorials where they showed real world stuff was the most helpful. When the talks are generic they are light on content. People start naming functions foo and bar, and it is hard to really get into it. But when people show real examples it is much better.
I'd attend a tutorial only if I were really interested in the topic.
It's hard to suggest topics for next year this far in advance since it's hard to know what gaps I'd like to fill a year from now.
Overall, I had a good time. Had to leave the sprints early... wah.
Thought the hotel was so-so. I thought the "quiet" rooms should have been enforced.
I must say that the social/personal networking aspect of this conferencce was unparalleled. Just fantastic. It was a HUGE success having such great hotel rates that most everyone stayed under the same roof.
As many have noted, the wireless network left a tremendous amount to be desired. I was actually one of the lucky ones, and didn't have any issues until the sprint days, the last few days of which the wireless was just abysmally poor.
If tutorial costs are reasonable our management will pay for them.
The wireless access on the conference floor was pretty poor. I ended up (in order to keep needed communications open) paying the hotel the extra $10/night for a wired connection in my room. I would rather have kept my laptop with me.
Nice work, AMK and everybody else. It's still my favorite technical conference.
I attended the tutorials this year and found them helpful, but the time went by quickly and there were more that I wanted to attend than I had time for. Next year perhaps having longer sessions (4 hours perhaps) and maybe a second day of sessions would be great.
Badges should show nickname, company, and city/country.
Put company names on name tags.
I'd like to learn to use a specific part of Python for applications on Linux, not just overviews of apps written in Python.
What days did you attend PyCon?
Sunday (74) Friday (78) Saturday (77)
Please rate your overall satisfaction with PyCon 2006
34% very high (27) 60% high (48) 6% low (5)
Please rate your overall satisfaction with the keynotes
25% very high (20) 54% high (43) 20% low (16)
Please rate your overall satisfaction with the talks.
14% very high (11) 70% high (55) 16% low (13)
Please rate your overall satisfaction with the network.
3% very high (2) 15% high (11) 38% low (27) 44% very low (31)
Please rate your overall satisfaction with the food.
19% very high (19) 62% high (48) 9% low (9) 1% very low (1)
Please rate your likelihood of attending next year.
45% very high (35) 38% high (30) 15% low (12) 1% very low (1)
Would you prefer a conference that took place:
just as it was (1) better to end on a weekend, this years way worked (1) This was a good schedule (1) not important (1) 22% Includes one weekend day (starts on Sunday or ends on Saturday) (15) 23% Only on weekdays (16) 55% Includes two weekend days (38)
How can we improve PyCon next year?
The current location felt fairly isolated from the outside world -- I would prefer a more urban location, however the hotel environment worked much better than the previous DC location as far as feeling spacious, connected. The crowd flow felt smoother than in years past.
The food was good this year, but given the relative isolation of the hotel from cheap breakfast options, a small breakfast offering every day would be worth another $20 in registration fee to me but at the least, coffee being available before the morning sessions start would be huge.
Overall this has been a good experience and I want to thank all of the volunteers that put it all together!
I heard several presenters declined. Make them a bit more special, by destinguishing them on the nametag (use ''speaker' like at EuroPython, it gets you the inquiries from what do you speak on from the girls, that missed you presentation)
There is a huge, hard-to-cross gap between intro Python and advanced usage. This applies to all sources of Python knowledge: books, material available on the web, and this conference.
I would like to know more about advanced features of the language: metaclasses, descriptors, decorators. I checked every Python book on display at Nerdbooks last night, and found only one chapter in the Python cookbook. And because that's a cookbook, it was pretty poor on concepts.
There is a need for an advanced Python book, and it would be wonderful if there were a concerted effort to improve coverage of these topics at next year's pycon, perhaps at tutorials.
I have to say that this conference was somewhat disappointing -- I came away knowing way too much about this year's fads (aka web frameworks), without increasing my understanding of the language itself.
Better wireless which allows peer networking. Or else have ethernet switches everywhere.
Get Alex Martelli, Bruce Eckel
More volunteers for room setup night before.
Capture VGA signal going to projectors so we can have video + audio recordings.
Turn off the air condition...all rooms were too cold...colder than outside.
coffee and tea available before keynotes!
better way to know about schedule changes (maybe e-mail alerts)
have talk feedback forms available at start of conference so they can be filled out right after each talk.
Better keynotes -- I wasn't impressed with the Plone one or the Cohen one. (Although the interview format was an interesting experiment, I don't think it worked.)
I did like the "bonus lunch keynote" on Friday.
Food was excellent overall. No complaints there.
I believe it's been covered above.
Review the talks more, perhaps work with the presenters in advance to ensure a smooth process and optimal experience.
More repeats of the good talks. Repeat highly rated talks on subsequent days during openspace
The "snack" breaks wiped the food out... and if the session you attended went long, you just went hungry.
Publicize wired networking... some of us are still in the dark ages. ;)
The schedule of talks had too much churn, especially on Sunday; I understand that people back out, but it made it hard to plan where you were going.
The nerdbooks.com party was a great way to meet people; more of that would be good.
The lightning talks were good... a couple of flops, a few homeruns, but overall pretty good.
Needed better moderation of speakers going until the start of the next timeslot, particularly in the open space talks.
Encourage "main" speakers to also hold an open space Q&A/BoF sometime later on during the conference.
There's no place for general comments, so I'll do that here.
I didn't use the network, so no comments.
I thought the food was very good. The catering staff was really the best I've ever seen. Very helpful, and didn't mind interacting with attendees. That's unusual.
- The wireless BITES! Extremely annoying.
- A better mechanism for impromtu announcements, similar to the
- bulletin board sheets of years past, with scribblings of all sorts:
- GPG key signings, BOF's, "Joe meet me at 8:00", etc.
- Food was pretty good.
- Comraderie is, as always, excellent. I'm participating in my first
- sprint, though I'm leaving Tuesday. I feel completely out of my
- element, but folks are very tolerant of my slow nature.
- Nothing you can do about this, but I was surprised by Andrew's
- comments that most found the beds comfy. I wanted to add another
- data point: I found lying in the bed to be akin to drowning, and
- keep wishing for a much firmer mattress. I usually find hotel beds
- to be pretty firm and have been sleeping horribly here. (That, and
- the thermostat has been set to 80 F for four days and the room is
- still cold. The thermostat is making something blow, but it ain't
- heat. It's not AC either. Seems to be just air.)
We need to get more volunters involved. There were a handful of people working the registration desk and hosting sessions.
Serving food in the hallway made tigs quite crowded. Is there a way to solve that?
It would be nice to have more tee shirts available. Perhaps we could allow people to order extra when they register? Also, we need to have a way to match up the size they ordered at registration so that we do not run out of specific sizes. This could be as easy as having a list of the registrants avail able to check off as they register.
Perhaps more organized evening activities? Professional sports or a shuttle running to the Galaria.
Pycon is a great time and I would like to help more for Pycon 2007. Please make your needs known earlier. I was on the volunteer mailing list but felt that there must have been another form of communication because often we would just see what had been done; not very often was a task thown out for someone to pick up.
More tutorials, better wireless, some new social networking gimic
My only real complaint is about the cleanliness of the ballroom. I think the lack of convienient trash cans (particularly at the beginning of the conference) contributed to the problem. And with as many soda can's that are emptied during the conference, the trash recepticals should be paired with clearly marked recycle containers too. I'm not normally a neat freak, but it kind of bothered me this week.
Please provide coffee during registration not just at first break. the hallways were a bit crowded during the lunch breaks. I'm not sure how that could be made better though. It worked though. The lunch choices were excellent. some of the afternoon snacks were kind of odd like the trail mix.
More of everything! Free student places? Competitions, prizes. How about an "installfest"?
Better network access - when the network was up, it was fast enough but wireless APs got knocked out by the door motors in the ballroom, and signal strenghts fluctuated a lot.
Not as many "intro" talks. Maybe intro + usage/example code would be better? I already knew a lot about the topics before so I'd rather get into the heart of things.
Would be nice to have coffee available before the keynotes!
I expanded my thoughts in general in my blog, http://pyjesse.blogspot.com/2006/02/pycon-my-critique.html - and I come off as overly critical, but I would like to take some time and take a more proactive role in improving the conference as much as I can.
I believe that as a language conference, we can not concentrate on the "hype du-jour" of the day - while that does help recent adoption, I think we need to cover our "core" bases as well. I think we need to go back to systems/program design, and showcasing the core feature of the language.
We can not simply show those successful applications written with the language - we have to show people how to make those successful applications and tools.
For instance, TurboGears is really cool - and a lot of the web frameworks get a lot of soundbites, but how do I, as someone knowing the core language build something like that?
- Have breakfast before the keynotes so people can be encouraged to
- mingle in the mornings too.
- Make sure the mics are working for people to ask questions
- seamless wifi access
Otherwise I had a great time and will be back next year for sure!!! Good job to all involved.
Since it will be at the same venue...
MAKE SURE THAT THE HOTEL UNDERSTANDS THAT THEIR NETWORK SERVICES WERE A DISASTER!!
They should be completely embarrassed.
If we paid for all of the food/drinks that were set out... then IMO they were far to quick to take things away. Some of us were busy and didn't get to the lines until stuff was being taken away.
For next year, at the end if the serving time, consolidate items to the one side (between the registration desk and the kitchen and leave it up until it is clear that all are done).
More Talks on WxPython
I had 4 coworkers who expressed a desire to go to the conference (and had management approval) but ended up not going due to spanning over the weekend (family events interfered). I'm sure for everyone of those types of situations, you'd be hurting someone who didn't have management approval and wouldn't be able to attend if it meant taking off of work though.
Work out network issues. Maybe stretch out conference to allow longer talks + more time between talks.
Publish speaker slides and notes before conference if possible.
Shuttle to and from airport.
email receipt need to list the tutorials you signed up for.
Descriptions of talks need to be available earlier (same for tutorials).
I think the time for individual talks were way too short. Every one of them ended up having to be cut short. Consider adding 5 minutes to each talk.
BTW, the tutorials were great! David Goodger was great!
Less talks but longer higher quality sessions. 30 minute sessions are too short. Be more critical on who you take for talks. You should have a good idea of who the good speakers are. Dump talks that are very abstract like "Vertical Fractal Analysis".
Perhaps you can have two levels of talks. Better speakers with more popular topics can get 45 to 60 minutes. Lump others into open space talks of 15 - 30 minutes.
A comment on that last question - I was one of those who originally objected to the weekend format. I've now changed my mind. In a couple different ways, the weekend structure worked out a lot better for me personally.
Coffee and/or breakfast in the early AM would be hugely helpful. I'd gladly pay more for this addition if cost is an issue.
Tell people to prepare more engaging presentations and tell them to rehearse to co-workers several times in advance.
See "Other comments" above. In summary: -fix the wireless ASAP -coffee first thing -have a schedule of talks whose audio/video will be available post-Con
I felt that the keynotes were weak, especially the interview. I felt that the entire conference was a little thin on technical details, and that it would be much better to have half as many talks that were twice as long, or at least one track of talks that were focused on providing more detail.
A lot of times, I went to a presentation to only come out of it with an idea of what something does, not how to do it. I can get this information from the project's website. In my mind, some more detailed technical howto sessions and best-practices sessions would be great.
I would also like to see this extended into having a "track" of talks in multiple parts, to replace the concept of tutorials. So, maybe three sessions on TurboGears, in ascending order of detail (general overview, intermediate level implementation, advanced stuff).
Far and away the biggest advantage of being at PyCon was meeting people, and sharing ideas. There should be more facilitating of this.
More code and demos, fewer slide/informational talks. I also found that I began to look for good speakers, and the topic almost doesn't matter. It's harder to deal with that when deciding which talks to allow of course.
More smaller spaces for folks to sprint during the conference might be nice too. This was my first pycon, and the number of people I met really surprised me. The Python community is very friendly, and the more we can do to promote the social aspect (as geeks and people) I think the better the conference would be.
I'd hate to see a sign-up for a talk form, but something like the party interest form for talks so we don't have what happened with the Python Eggs talk (which really turned out not to be about eggs).
You already know about the wireless, but if you could have someway of folding in-room internet into the special room rate for pycon it might be at least a good option for next year.
These are more just general comments rather than specific improvement suggestions.
Wireless coverage was horrible. We could have probably done a better job ourselves by buying 10 WAPs and sprinkling them liberally around.
I only attended Guido's keynote, the other topics didn't really interest me.
If a speaker is going to code, make sure the text is readable on screen or provide handouts or have a follow along website. (not specific to pycon but to a speaker)
Promote it more heavily and starting earlier. The more attendees there are, the more valuable the conference is, since we learn so much from each other.
- Have more social activities - may be a visit to a Dave and Busters or similar, if logistically possible.
- This time, the trail mix supplied on the first day of the conference (snack time) was stale.
I was disappointed at the quality of the talks. I think the bar for doing a talk should be raised, even if that means there are less talks.
In addition, perhaps people should be encouraged to organize workshops or other interactive activities.
The keynote speakers should not be 'selling' a product, telling us it's a great way to get a consulting gig. That's not about Python. The keynotes should be about Python. I would like to see some kind of filter for the talks. Several of the talks were of such low quality that I felt dumber for having attended!
Everything was pretty much ok.
Presenter access to internet during presentations really helped in live demos.
Encourage presenters to do at least a little live demo at the Python prompt.
- add country/state to name tags
- provide wired tcp/ip access for speakers
- add a survey before conference to find hot topics and try to put those talks in large rooms.
- provide a message board for posting of adhoc meetings (like dinner groups)
Include more general talks. The talks this year seemed to be intensely focused on particular niches of Python, but there wasn't much for general Python coding practices.
Somehow getting Internet access in the rooms enabled as part of the group-rate would be excellent.
It would be nice if there was a feature on the website to allow people to publish some info about themselves, a picture, maybe a paragraph listing some interests, and most importantly a URL to an RSS feed (hopefully Python-related). Then have the website do some feed-aggregation, to have a sort of Planet-Pycon, so that in the months leading up to the conference (and even afterwards) you could get to know the people you'll be crossing paths with.
Thanks for the conference
BOTTLED WATER!!! The water was undrinkable, so I drank pop. More healthy snacks (pronounced lower-carb ;-). I gained 10 pounds in a week! :-((
Maybe something like a Linux install fest. Where people can try to get things running on their laptops. Things like setting up buildbot or selenium or implementing a simple CherryPy/Django server. The tutorials and talks were mostly lecture, it might be useful to have labs. I realize that labs can take a lot of time and effort but it might be useful. Maybe Saturday evening could be labs.
i think one good idea would be to add IRC nicks to the conf badge. there are a lot of people i talk to on IRC and don't neccesarily know their real name. an option to add this upon registration would be a neat idea.
better network. i'm sure you are going to get a lot of that ;)
session management was a little flaky. i was in a couple talks that ran over and i missed the start of the next talk. i noticed steve holden did a nice job of this. he was very adamant that the talks ended when they were supposed to.
Have three Lightning Talk sessions, one per day. We had two sessions with 20 speakers, but there were easily 30 speakers available, if not more. Every PyCon has had more speakers than time, and the audience does not get bored. Let's find the saturation point. Only the first needs to be plenary; the second fit into a regular (largish) session room.
Bring back the bulletin board for Open Space. The computer-based scheduling allowed only one topic per timeslot and described them all as "talks". Open Space became an overflow for session talks. That's important but it misses something that made the DC Open Spaces such a success: several simultaneous roundtable discussions.I wanted to do a Cheetah roundtable but all the timeslots were filled with "talks". I could have pushed but it didn't seem worth the bother.
The Marriott's additional space and layout was definitely an improvement over last year, and the hotel rooms were quite a bargain. The only thing I missed space-wise was a full-size ballroom with round tables for the Open Space.
We should make sure the schedule is clearer when unexpected things happen. The first day, the lunch talk started late and ended late. People were confused all afternoon whether all the sessions were moved back or the after-lunch session squashed. Some people thought one, some the other. So you'd go to a talk and the previous one was still going on, and small talks (Open Space) didn't know when to begin. When something like this happens, we need to adjust the times on all the posted schedule sheets and make an announcement.
The evening party at Nerdbooks was great. I was impressed with the amount and variety of food they contributed, and it gave people a chance to browse/buy technical references. Better than just selling a few titles at the conference.
I felt a bit isolated from Dallas. Maybe we can have an excursion downtown the day before or after, or something.
[This is one feedback submitted as two entries, because the software submitted it while I was in the middle of typing.]
Improve the quality of the talks.. breadth and depth.
The technical aspects of the talks seemed to be different this year, perhaps with a target audience of beginner to intermediate skill level.
It would be really nice to have more advanced talks next year, perhaps with "Advaned Topic" prepended to the talk title, to give beginners a heads-up.
Have Sean Reifschneider/tummy.com do the networking ;-)
WIRELESS: very spotty this year--up and down all the time, lots of dropped packets. I don't mind if it's a little slow, as long as it is up consistently.
FOOD: Please provide continental breakfast a la PyCon 2005. I thought that was a great way to get people there early and is very convenient for attendees. Food was better at PyCon 05 than 06. This year the snacks were not up to par. Preferred 05 where there was fresh fruit and baked goods at snacks. This year we got bagels once or twice, but the oatmeal bars and a nuts-only snack don't cut it. Lunches were OK.
better wireless, it's great otherwise.
Offer transportation for evening meals each night. There were several evenings where a group would get together and go out for dinner, which is fine, but many people did not have rental cars or transportation which limited dining options. It would be nice to have some type of shuttle or car pool available each night to a central location with dining options for those who have no transportation and do not want to eat at the hotel every night.
The internet connectivity was very lacking as well. Granted, the hotel is probably not used to having 400 geeks hammering their network all weekend long, but perhaps next year they can offer a better service for the conference. There were many issues with limited connectivity to the wireless network and very slow speeds. The in-room connections which were not free also had connectivity and speed issues. If the hotel wants to keep the conference they really should address this issue next year.
Better and more snacks.
Plone keynote was awful. After the talk I had no idea what it was, what it did, what it looked like, how it works, what its relation to Zope is, etc.
Microphones that don't work are unacceptable.
Slides that have very small fonts are unacceptable.
Somewhere that's more of a walking city would be better (even San Antonio).
There seem to be more people developing the Python language than working on applications.
Don't let the Plone guys keynote ever again.
Longer time slots for presentations so it doesn't feel so rushed and there is time for questions.
More emphasis on working code demonstrations.
Fix the audio. Even in small rooms you could not hear the speaker.
Improve the sound capabilities.
Dallas is boring. I'll wait until 2008 when we hopefully find a better host city.
Have an organized Friday evening party or social activity. OSCON has lots of events with free beer, which really help the shy to connect with others.
Less web development, more Linux apps.
Put on the web site "computer recommended".
The conference was more of a technology fair and not what I expected. More of an overview of products available.