PyCon is celebrating its twentieth anniversary this year, I’ve been trying to figure out how many of them I have attended. I think I have been to eight of the conferences.
Anyway, PyCon is happening in Salt Lake City, Utah this year. Let’s talk about the highlights of the conference so far!
There will be over 80 talks going on at PyCon with 5 being given simultaneously at any one time. Even if you try to see every talk that you can, you’ll only see a fifth of them at best.
But that’s okay because they are recorded and will be made available on YouTube soon.
The first Keynote was given by Ned Batchelder and it was about working with people or soft skills. It was a very interesting talk with several intriguing curve balls into other topics.
The first talk I went to was supposed to Al Sweigart’s “An Overview of the Python Code Tool Landscape 2023”, but when I got to the room, it had been cancelled and replaced by someone else’s talk. So I went back to the Expo Hall and had a nice chat with some of the sponsors. I also ran into Sean Tibor from the Teaching Python Podcast and we had a nice chat.
The Hallway Track
Speaking of meeting people, that is sometimes called the Hallway Track. That is where you meet people in the hallways or at breakfast or lunch. I got to meet some of the Real Python crew too, such as Jim Anderson, Geir Arne Hjelle, Martin Breuss and Christopher Bailey, the host of the Real Python Podcast.
There are lots of neat people in the hallways from all your favorite Python packages. But there are also lots of new people to Python attending and they are a joy to meet with and chat with as well.
For the most part, the Python community is very welcoming. Don’t be afraid to join a circle of chatting people and get in on the conversation!
I hosted an open space on Python GUIs. An Open Space is where you propose a topic on a board that can last up to one hour. People check the board throughout the day and decide if they want to go to it.
We had multiple discussions going on at once in this open space, which was unusual. I missed out on about half of them because of that. There ere some teachers there using Tkinter to teach their students and they had a lively discussion with another person who was very good with Tkinter. Which was nice, as my experience lies elsewhere in the GUI world.
I did have some new nice conversations about PyQt vs PySide vs Kivy as well.
There was a Lego Racing area in the Expo center. They recorded everyone’s race time and said that later that day they would be giving away real Lego race car sets to the people with the fastest times. It was fun, but it quickly became clear that you just needed to build cars as high and as wide as was allowed.
The shape of the car made no difference. It was all about the weight and wheel placement. I didn’t win anything that I’m aware of because I wanted my car to have some character rather then looking like a brick with wheels.
There are a lot of security focused sponsors and some interesting no-code solutions too. TaiPy looked really interesting, for example. I am hoping to hit up some of the startups in day two.
I am looking forward to seeing who else I will meet in day two. Maybe it will be you. See you around!