Hello everyone and Happy New Year!
The beginning of the new year means that PyCon is only a little over 4 months away and it’s time to kick off Open Spaces planning.
First of all I would like to welcome our new Open Spaces co-chair, Trey Hunner, again. Trey, I’m so happy to have you on board :)
During our weekly call Trey and I brainstormed a few ideas on how to improve the Open Spaces this year. I think we did a pretty great job with the Open Spaces last year, they were successful and everything went smoothly, but there is always room for improvements. I wanted to summarize our ideas here for everyone to read. I also added everything to our Open Spaces Trello board.
Trey, Hobson, and Brandon, you all should have access to the Trello board.
Ewa, please let me know if you’d like to be added as well.
Everyone is of course welcome to add their own ideas to the Trello board.
Here’s a summary of what Trey and I discussed:
What worked last year:
* We should add a section about the Open Spaces to the PyCon website. There was a section last year but it looks like this hasn’t been transferred to this year’s website.
* We should continue tweeting about the Open Spaces using #pyconopenspace. Taking a picture of the board a few times day and tweeting it out for attendees to see would also be a good idea.
* We should write another blog post about the Open Spaces and maybe try to have it added to some popular Python newsletters to gain more visibility.
* How can we make the Open Spaces board more visible? The board last year was beautiful following the PyCon color scheme but it might have been too easy to walk by/not visible enough. Can we make it more visible by getting the board printed in brighter colors? Other ideas?
* It might be a good idea to add a small column to the printed hand-out schedule indicating the Open Spaces. Attendees could then go ahead and mark their schedule with an “X” for the times they are planning on attending an Open Space.
* Can we add a column about the Open Spaces to Guidebook? This might be useful to make attendees aware of the Open Spaces. We could also add a simple section to Guidebook explaining what Open Spaces are and how to “sign up”.
* We could ask the registration desk workers to make people aware of the Open Spaces board when they register. The board is right next to the registration desk.
* In general it might be useful to write a short script for registration desk workers indicating what information to forward to attendees, specifically things that may not be as obvious like the hallway track, what to do in the evenings, PyLadies auction, Open Spaces, etc. This may not be possible doing busy times but at least when time allows.
* Can we keep the Open Spaces going during sprints? We could maybe add a column to the sprints board letting people add cards for Open Spaces. Maybe there is an extra room available. If not we could do it “pick your own location”-style.
* We could create a short slideshow targeted at people who are attending PyCon for the first time and send it to meetup organizers to be presented at their meetups before PyCon. The slide show could include everything first time attendees may not be aware of like the Open Spaces, PyLadies auction, Education Summit, hallway track, evening activities, etc.
(Side note: DjangoCon US this year had a 1 hour event for first time DjangoCon attendees which took place the afternoon before the talk part of the conference started. It was very successful and well received by attendees. It was comparable to the introduction to sprints workshop at PyCon. It may be worth considering doing something like this at PyCon as well.)
I would love to hear your thoughts on all of those ideas and welcome you to share your own ideas as well.
I look forward to working with all of you again!
You are appreciated.
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You are not alone.