First of all, I could really use your help in promoting the poster
session at PyCon. The nature of posters make them a good fit for both
Python educators and their students. Undergrads and graduate students
(and teachers) can use them as a way to get conference presentation
experience and recognition, and virtual posters let students and
teachers at any level get in on the fun, even if they can't come to
So please, promote, blog, etc the poster session to your friends and
colleagues as much as you can. Again, all information is at
http://us.pycon.org/2010/conference/posters/ and don't hesitate to email
me if you have any questions. If you have contacts that you think would
be more responsive to a semi-official announcement/invitation/groveling
plea from me, please send me their contact info and I'll get something
Secondly, we have the chance to put our stamp on PyCon. It wouldn't take
that much to move our unofficial BoF to being a regular education
"summit" and standard feature of PyCon. What it *would* take is someone
to own the job of basic planning and outreach to the Python in Ed
community, particularly those within easy attendance range of Atlanta.
If anyone is willing to do that, but either can't attend PyCon or feels
uncomfortable moderating the actual event, I'd be willing to be an
on-site figurehead of last resort. ;)
Given that the southeast includes so many excellent schools at all
levels, it could be a great time to turn up our outreach, and it would
demonstrate that Edu-Sig is one of the leading communities (which I
happen to believe) within the greater Python community.
So please consider taking this on. And please help plug the poster
session - it would be great to have a strong education presence as we
add posters to PyCon.
It may take a few Pycons for this practice to really gain traction. I
haven't been following the apac.pycon organizer list so don't know if
that Pycon will feature a similar poster session or has plans to
institute same down the road. My sense is the various Pycons copy
from each other, so whatever works will in Atlanta has good chance of
We're ramping up around Python in our multi-media events,
experimenting with a kind of recruiting front end that's
participatory, spoken word and music, using Lightning Talks as a guide
(karaoke also apropos). The goal is to attract students to a whole
set of free skool type classes where relevant skill sets might be
In other news: PEP 3003 will freeze the Python language long enough
to help VMs catch up, focus energy on expanding libraries. Google has
a new open source Go language....
Thanks a lot, Kirby. That's the sort of boost we need. I hope some of
the Portland folks will participate, virtually if they can't make the
journey across the country.
kirby urner wrote:
> On Thu, Nov 12, 2009 at 10:14 AM, Vern Ceder
> <[hidden email]> wrote:
> << trim >>
>> So please consider taking this on. And please help plug the poster session -
>> it would be great to have a strong education presence as we add posters to
> Hi Vern --
> I forwarded your edu-sig post verbatim with a bit of an intro,
> encouraging our Portland User Group to spread the word regarding this
> new opportunity:
> http://mail.python.org/pipermail/portland/2009-November/000856.html >
> It may take a few Pycons for this practice to really gain traction. I
> haven't been following the apac.pycon organizer list so don't know if
> that Pycon will feature a similar poster session or has plans to
> institute same down the road. My sense is the various Pycons copy
> from each other, so whatever works will in Atlanta has good chance of
> We're ramping up around Python in our multi-media events,
> experimenting with a kind of recruiting front end that's
> participatory, spoken word and music, using Lightning Talks as a guide
> (karaoke also apropos). The goal is to attract students to a whole
> set of free skool type classes where relevant skill sets might be
> In other news: PEP 3003 will freeze the Python language long enough
> to help VMs catch up, focus energy on expanding libraries. Google has
> a new open source Go language....
>> This time for sure!
>> -Bullwinkle J. Moose
>> Vern Ceder, Director of Technology
>> Canterbury School, 3210 Smith Road, Ft Wayne, IN 46804
>> [hidden email]; 260-436-0746; FAX: 260-436-5137
>> Edu-sig mailing list
>> [hidden email] >> http://mail.python.org/mailman/listinfo/edu-sig >>
On Thu, Nov 12, 2009 at 2:19 PM, Vern Ceder <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Thanks a lot, Kirby. That's the sort of boost we need. I hope some of the
> Portland folks will participate, virtually if they can't make the journey
> across the country.
Thanks to you as well Vern, for keeping this ball rolling.
I dropped something into the Chipy list as well, expect a few
subscribers will reminisce about last year's action (promotion).
Speaking of which, I've found occasion to promote Python as a
community to groups who might benefit from lessons learned.
(i) the Lightning Talk meme is worth sharing.
A group, say a bunch of anarchists, hears how Pythonistas sometimes
get kinda fascist about that time limit, which gives them respect for
the discipline but maybe without thinking they have really think like
a computer scientist (tends to mean "strict and precise" in the
Here's a way to do Show & Tell without surrendering the floor to some
guy who knows how to avoid being interrupted, plays King of the Hill
with that microphone.
Of course Karaoke has already helped reinforce this "sharing the
limelight" ethic, other brands of open mic, but it's good to know the
Python people have their own ethic and aesthetic, proves engineers are
(ii) the structure of the Python community contains many worthwhile ideas.
Like the WikiEducator group is trying to juggle the puzzle pieces of
having the Wiki itself, a governing structure, a Google group.
What about a communal blog, do we need one? -- a recent question.
Well, why not check out how the Python community does it with that PSF blog etc.
There's something to be said for having those blogospheric links, as
the Wiki concept is still not that familiar to those not getting open
source through their schooling, let alone hearing anything about
specific implementations, e.g. MoinMoin (believe it or not).
Wikipedia is understood more as a read-only encyclopedia than a
co-authoring system i.e. many who consult it for homework assignments
don't understand what a Wiki is or what that has to do with how
Wikipedia pages come to be. This means they might come to
Wikieducator with similar preconceptions, more as consumers than as
producers of content (which is fine, so far as it goes, but represents
a loss of freedom, promotes passivity where more activity is probably
We have a long way to go, when it comes to passing on free and open
source concepts. I continue to mine the Python infrastructure for
good ideas (PEPs, clear notion of namespaces, a willingess to adapt
but not gratuitously (Django's "no astronauts" meme...).
It's a two way street of course, e.g. this idea of a "poster session"
as a part of Pycon is already very much a part of many successful
conferences (including GIS in Action (where I spoke right after Pycon
this year, mentioned our wanting to copy this **). I still remember
Chalmers, the NanoTech conference going on in tandem with EuroPython.
For some of our keynotes, we had to wander through a poster session on
buckyballs and nanotubes. It's around then that I launched something
called HP4E, echoes of CP4E, trying to promote more geometric
awareness (HP = hexapents &&).