[EuroPython] For the CONFERENCE: content proposal (NOT Website,
Bea you can read too)
Harald Armin Massa
ghum at gmx.net
Fri Oct 8 12:04:24 CEST 2004
after showerstorming (=brainstorming by myself while showering)
yesterdays IRC-meeting-discussions I came up with a change request to my
request "Python for beginners track"
Call it "take a chance on Python"
(expl.: Sweden - Abba - the Album (1977) contains "take a chance on me")
The idea: I learned from some participants, that they have just gotten
curios about that "Python thingy" ... maybe some new worker in their
company finished a software project in time and claimed it on Python, or
through skimming some of the BigNames in Web (like Sir Tim Berners-Lee
"By the way.. Python is cool" http://www.w3.org/2000/10/swap/#L88 ) or
through Uche Ogbuji articles on XML threatment ...
And then googled through the web, found "hey, Sir Tim Berners-Lee might
be correct; let's go to Sweden where the girls are blond and kaviar is
cheep and visit Europython and learn sth. about Python"
I am confident that this squad is precious to the further success of
Python, so giving them some knowledge they can really understand is
quite a positive objective - because some of these will be judging to
"allow" Python as a language of choice.
The concept is:
- have a 3 x 1/2 day seminar with "python for really new bies"
- on the other time they can attend the "normal conference", get the
Pythoneers feeling, enjoy keynotes, sniff something about metaphysical
decorators and metaclasses with protocols using webframeworks
the "seminar" will be a really basic "how to do hello world with python"
going up to real world uses, for example:
- Python basics: syntax and semantics (types of data, control
structures, functions, parameters, comments...)
- special look on the dicts and lists and sets - which are really
- modules - namespaces: how to keep things organized ((expl. to EP:
people who are responsible for managing sth. often really care for
- accessing COM-objects from python: samples how to fill values into
Excel and format Cells there (expl. to EP: If you have to convince
pointy-haired ones or controllers, pushing data to Excel is of
unbelievable value. I KNOW that using the Excel-Object-Model is not
really Python Stuff, but "hey, you can do THAT with Python is a good
- list comprehensions (expl. to EP: they are extraordinarily powerfull.
And everybody who programmed has had that "go through data and do ....
type of job. Seeing that Python allows to collapse that to 1 line is a
great show of power)
- accessing databases from Python, skimming the basics of the DB-API of
Python. (expl. to EP: every company that was touched in any way by data
processing consulting the last 20 years now HAS a database with some
cricital information stored. Showing that Python can EASILY interact and
report with this data is of great value)
But: WHY should somebody do these kind of talks? My suggestion is:
make this a pedagogical experiment in training and seminar techniques
We can use:
- collaborative learning
- mixed trainers --- every speaker explains sth. for a limited time
frame; so the trainees get different ways of explanation of everything
and even better:
we surely have access to universities, and I am SURE that in the social
science, especially pedagogical faculties there are some really new
teaching concepts which really have to be tried. AND to do that on a
Python conference may strengthen the foothold of Python within social
the output for the speakers in this "track"
- the get in touch with "state of the art" teaching methods
- they can polish there communication skills with "non tech people"
- they can sharpen up their reputation as a trainer
the output for the attendees:
- they can say "I learned to programm Python" and tell the truth
- they have the guarantee that there will be sth. on the conference
which they really can understand
the output for the EP conference:
- we can market the conference also as a "Python seminar" so that there
is a additional source of budget to send people there which may give us
- we can attract really newbies who are curious about Python
- with working with social sciences esp. pedagogical faculties we may
take steps to balance the gender ratio on the conference
the output for the Python communitie:
- with luck some decision-makers are at that seminars and can accept
that Python is the light side of the source
- we strengthen the foothold within social science / pedagogical branches
So, what do you think?
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