PyCon 2011: Saturday Plenaries (with Dropbox and Guido)

The Dropbox Plenary

The Saturday plenaries on 3/12/2011 started off with an engineer from Dropbox who gave a talk entitled “How Dropbox Did It and How Python Helped” with Rian Hunter. He started by telling us of the technical difficulties that Dropbox had to overcome. He told us that everything they wrote was done in Python and that he was the one who ported Dropbox to Linux. Anyway, he gave us some cool statistics about Dropbox, like the following:

  • Dropbox is the fastest growing downloaded application since Skype
  • More files are saved on Dropbox per day than tweets on Twitter – that’s 1,000,000 files saved every 15 minutes!
  • All this and no advertising whatsoever. It’s all word-of-mouth

To be honest, this was kind of a boring talk. The video is up now, so I’ll leave it to you to make your own opinion.

A Fireside Chat with Guido Van Rossum

The chat with Guido (creator of Python) was moderated by Jesse Noller. If you want, you can watch the video here. The questions for Guido were voted on by the community, but ultimately chosen by Jesse. I think the highlights for me was learning that Guido has trouble with certain programming paradigms, like asynchronous callbacks. Jesse also mentioned that Python 3 was a problem for Mark Pilgrim. I guess there was some controversy over something he said, but I missed it somehow. At the end of the plenary, they brought out a cake for Guido because it was Python’s 20th birthday this year.