[Chicago] Shall ChiPy have a "project night"?

Asheesh Laroia asheesh at asheesh.org
Thu Aug 29 23:28:15 CEST 2013

On Thu, 29 Aug 2013, Jason Wirth wrote:

> I'm  down... But two questions...

> 1) Whats your definition of "night"? It's often hard for me remake 
> nights with my crazy schedule, Chipy meetings are hard enough (but they 
> are so awesome so I go out of my way), but I'd be down for organizing 
> weekday events, like Friday afternoons.

In my mind, one of the key distinctions between a "project night" and a 
"co-working get together" is that the former is something that a group 
puts on, with an eye toward welcoming new people into group, and the 
latter is something that friends or co-workers put together for each 

Here's a pseudo-random project night info page from the Boston Python 
website: http://www.meetup.com/bostonpython/events/34664362/

According to this, 75 people attended. I imagine it'd be hard to get that 
kind of attendance for something on a weekday afternoon. And if your goal 
is to have a small get together, that is totally fine.

The reason I'm excited about "project nights" is because of their 
potential for bringing and retaining people into the group, and also 
generally setting a welcoming tone to the group, so doing that at the 75 
person scale is more interesting to me than doing it on the 10-12 person 

ChiPy people should feel very free to organize "ChiPy co-working times", 
or something like that; I just want to (if y'all are OK with it) reserve 
the term "project night" for that bigger, intentionally newcomer-friendly 

Given that, I should say that it's not essential it be a night. For 
example, a weekday afternoon could work just fine. I find it helpful to 
try to think about as general an attendee as possible -- many people have 
constraints related to family or work, and the work constraints are often 
very hard to fiddle with. This is especially applicable to people who are 
hobbyist programmers while working at some non-tech job; we can offer them 
work-life salvation if only they come to our project nights, practice 
Python, and get hired by other ChiPy members. (-;

(That is to say, tech jobs are often extra flexible in this way.)

So I'd say -- if you organize the event on Friday afternoon, try to call 
it a ChiPy Co-working Event, but I hope enough people are excited about 
the bigger format.

If you run a "Project night" on a weekend, I suggest "Projects Time" or 
similar. An interesting thing about names is that, usually, no one refuses 
to come to an event because it has a straightforward name, but in my 
experience people do feel intimidated by jargon in event titles like 
"hack." So best to keep it straightforward. Once they're there, we can 
teach them the jargon.

> 2) What if I don't like curry in a hurry? ;)

I... what?

...is this a reference to my PyCon scraping tutorial, or to a place I used 
to eat lunch five years ago? If so, you have an amazing memory. If not, 
then I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. (-:

Anyway, I got some +1s on IRC and by private email! Yay! I'd say we just 
need someone to step up and decide to organize it. I'm far away (San 
Francisco) so that can't be me, but I'd be happy to mentor a person who 
wants to do that if you want to have a higher-bandwidth conversation 
(phone, Google Hangouts, Mumble, etc.). That, and we need a venue and a 
sponsor and the rest, but that comes next once we have someone in charge. 
(Could be Brian Ray, if he wants, or it could be anyone else who replies 
to this saying "PICK ME PICK ME".)

-- Asheesh.

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