[Edu-sig] Pycon organizers is now talking about poster sessions

kirby urner kirby.urner at gmail.com
Fri Jul 31 23:36:19 CEST 2009

I should add to this that my friend David Feinstein has pioneered a
trully elegant set of software tools, in cahoots with a talented
Javascript programmer, that help judges with caucusing, the process
they enter into in order to determine the top three projects, if a
"best in show" approach is in the cards (with ISEF, that's kind of the

What I don't know is whether Vern will want to move in this "dog show"
direction, with categories, e.g. "best use of animation" or "best use
of sound" (just off the top...).  I think he has some experience
around dog shows and I could see where this might be a fun direction,
as then a star teenager in Peoria could brag to her school that she
was a star, a winner, in some Hyatt Regency context, even though her
family didn't have the money to send her.  As a reward, she'll get to
attend, gratis, when she turns 17, or whatever the cutoff.

We're all free to spiel out such science fiction, offer our views.  In
my own mind, edu-sig is sort of the "community in charge" on this one,
and Vern has been playing it that way.  He's one of us.  We had that
BOF with Dr. Chuck, with Ian (sounding pessimistic about Gattegno ever
getting a foothold, and indeed he struck out after three times at
bat), with many of us here.  Got to meet Gregor, really fun.  Jeff
Rush is brilliant.  Andre, our fearless leader, a class act, and so

Bottom line:  not too worried, have resources and contacts to
contribute should Pycon really become the Cirque du Soliel I think it
could be (already is -- "Rivendale" they called us, we ate that up).
I also used the pycon-organizer planning list to float my notion of
multiple Pycons, many running in parallel.  A quick check of the
website reveals its like that already, with Pycons in India, Argentina
or wherever people wanna do em.  Every one will have a chance to show
off the "poster session" idea.  My hope is we gain the benefits of any
global franchise:  quick comparing of notes across multiple venues
gives us a better experience all around.  Factor in CTE doing
something similar, add synergy, and we've got a dynamite winning hand

Looking forward to Atlanta, provided CSN keeps afloat, lots of people
taking pot shots, wanting us to take a dive.  People aren't really
that open to "philosophy talk" once they find out what it is.  But
that's OK.  Not everyone goes for Patti Smith either.


On Fri, Jul 31, 2009 at 2:00 PM, kirby urner<kirby.urner at gmail.com> wrote:
>> The initial article was mine.  I said that I would like PyCON better
>> if there was some way to get a track of 'what have you been doing
>> lately'.  The sort of talks that would not get accepted to PyCON
>> because they are not polished enough, or not of interest to a large
>> enough segment of the community.  Somebody suggested posters, and
>> the whole topic took off from there.
>> Laura
> I was on the list for awhile, gave Vern a boost with all the
> background as I knew it, including an idea for poster session from
> Steve.
> Since Pycon this year, I've been alert to other conferences with more
> feelers out to schools and user groups, not just private companies.
> The ESRI-sponsored GIS conference, where I was a guest speaker, stood
> out in many ways, as at least half the exhibit hall is devoted to
> academic projects.
> I took pictures and shared them, but I think many people, Steve, Vern,
> Jeff included, already know what a poster session might look like.  I
> hadn't attended one, a professional one (discounting science fairs I'd
> entered, some awards received) until 1st International Conference on
> Buckminsterfullerene in Santa Barbara in early 1990s.
> I'm assuming Vern is still on the list and he's the designated driver
> for this project.  He and Jeff went to NECC conference.  PyOhio also
> has something postery I think.
> Another Jeff, Jeff Rush, was floating the eduPycon idea, as a spin-off
> of Pycon.
> It may well be that the business-oriented mindsets of the people
> organizing Pycon will preclude their doing an effective job, although
> it's way to early too worry about that, plus this is just the first
> year of trying, so jury out until 2012 at least.
> I don't have time for nuts and bolts on this, think Vern will do fine.
>  I'm mostly in bed with Microsoft these days, looking at IronPython's
> classroom potential.  There's a chance Portland Public will embrace
> Python in a big way, with more pilots beginning this year (in addition
> to pilots already completed and documented) but it's not a given that
> CPython will be their first choice.
> Lots to think about, big meeting Aug 7.
> More soon,
> Kirby

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