Hi guys. Thanks for the meeting yesterday evening -- that was fun and
I'd like to commit to doing a 10m (or such) talk on SQLAlchemy in the
future; perhaps at the March meeting, though I have some travels to work
around in March. Other subjects on which I am not expert, but perhaps
proficient that might be useful: virtualenv, ZODB, Mako, WingIDE. I hope
that we can cram in the proposed talk on Closure one day.
FWIW w/r/t the new presentations format:
- I do think that the new structure idea is a good one.
- I like the idea of a 10m (ish) presentation but I'd propose that we
allow for at least equal-time for follow-up questions and discussion before
the pressure of the next talk. Perhaps we could realistically budget 30m for
each, with 5 minutes for being late to start, 10-15 for show-n-tell and
10-15 for follow-up.
- I think we should advertise our topics to other like-minded groups (you
guys all know who they are better than me) and hope for some
Last, I hope that the following is taken in the spirit in which I write it,
and not as a criticism at all: I noticed last year at PyCon (and in other
varied conferences) that some folks spend a LOT of time making a slide-based
presentation, and then basically read the audience the slides. I think we
all have a tendency to do this, and it makes for a comparatively poor
presentation. I've certainly done it.
This tendency is outlined very well in Tufte's "The Cognitive Style of
PowerPoint". Of course, the audience can read... better to let us skim
the slides quick while one talks about the flesh of the concept, rather than
read the bullet points. The slides are great, and it's a chore to set them
up and a generous thing to do for all of us, but when there is only 10
minutes, I'd say that it's better to use them to frame and illustrate the
discussion, rather than to be a literal script to follow. As you'll see in
Tufte's essay, reading the slides also has a tendency to dumb-down the
conversation, due to the data density restrictions of projected slides (have
to speak in short, cryptic phrases to fit on screen).
ALSO: There was a fellow last night who mentioned co-working spaces in
Madison; guy, give me a shout, perhaps we can help make one happen here in
AND ALSO: I'll tell Nico Preston when I next talk with him that MadPy might
be interested in helping his disaster-relief web project.
1: http://www.edwardtufte.com/tufte/powerpoint and though it's for-pay, it
seems to be online here:
New time and place!
3PM - 6PM
Room 2310, UW-Madison Computer Science Building
1210 W. Dayton St. Madison, WI
featuring Google App Engine and SciPy.
Hope to see you there!
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