[EuroPython] Reality Check in Winter

kirby urner kirby.urner at gmail.com
Tue Dec 11 18:13:45 CET 2007

> I want the site to be foremost for the organisers of the conference,
> to help organise the conference.  And if you're not an organiser,
> then -- why not?  I'd like it if the site said 'you're supposed to
> be doing something around here to help put on the conference' and
> not 'here is the conference we are planning to give you'.  I'm
> not sure how we get this effect, but the site we have now clearly
> gives the other effect.

This is a well stated perspective.  Portland BarCamp was inspiring
to me because the format is explicit:  you the people coming to this
event are also the people staging it i.e. you're not spectators, but
active performers, circus geeks in the older sense (but without the

My experience at Europython is both encouraging and discouraging.
The hotel was clearly designed with such conferences in mind, so
there wasn't any sense of "fighting the sets" (old theater lingo).
Furthermore, both Aiste and Laura are highly gifted, which isn't
to say others didn't contribute, aren't likewise skillful.  Just with
these two at the helm, it's hard to see a conference failing (that
may sound like idle flattery but hey, I was there, I know what I'm
talking about).  Not every conference is so lucky.  Many fall apart
in the early planning phase.  A great thing about Europython:  a
great track record.

Anyway, best wishes on forming a stronger partnership of core
geeks.  I think Laura's company and POV both do a very fine job
of anchoring.  It was a high privilege to do some last minute
scrambling once I got of the plane from Portland.  Those living
closer to the action would have more and easier opportunities
to develop your own conference organizing skills, no matter how
good they are already.


> <snip points about making the registration process easier to find
>  and use, which I agree with>
> >Another nice thing would be some sort of archive of the last EuroPython
> >maybe with photos, videos, links to blog post (we need to blog more
> >anyway) and so on. I think somebody showed something at the last EP on
> >how it could look but basically it's importing some RSS feeds (and maybe
> >converting these to content on the site so this information does not go
> >away should the RSS feed die). But this point is just some icing if
> >somebody feels enlighted to do it.
> I don't think that this is some icing -- I think this is what we
> need to get more community involvement.  Privided that everybody
> can post things that goes on the feed and its not more 'blah blah
> from the conference orginisers to you the audience'
> >As for the wiki and spam, what about limiting editing functionality to
> >those registered? I mean all this stuff does not necessarily need to be
> >edited by anybody. Of course some system to only store this list of
> >people in one place without manual copying would be the best option here.
> I don't want to limit the editing to those who are registered.  I want
> the site editable by people who are not registered for this year's
> conference.  I want the community to be out discussing and helping
> even if they cannot attend this year.  And in particular, I don't want
> the site to be only used for one event and then more or less die for
> another year.  Because I don't want the organising to more or less die
> every year, the same way it has now.  Its not clear to me that even
> requring a login in order to edit isn't too much.  I haven't given up
> on OpenID yet -- I am curious as to what problems Doug found with it.
> One thing I have thought of is a system where everybody has a set of
>  virtual postits, so that people could stick them on appropriate
> places of the site with notes -- move this colum there, this thing
> is not sized properly -- this thing does not work with safari --
> etc, etc, all linked to the bug tracker.  It might help designing
> such a thing even though we aren't all located in the same place.
> On the other hand, something in me says that people who are interested
> in such things should just come to Göteborg and stay at my house until
> we work out the details of things.
> I just don't know how to do design-by-distributed-people.  It seems
> a hard problem to me.
> >Oh, and I think we should do something about the design as it looks a
> >bit aged IMHO. I would even like a new logo but not sure how hard it
> >would be to do one or to decide on one (same with design in general).
> It's not hard to find willing artists, and the artist we have been using
> Vincent Maton, could probably be convinced to do an updated  version.
> It's harder to know what you want in a new version.
> >And looking at e.g. http://en.oreilly.com/rails2008/public/content/home
> >some call for talks would probably also be important to have now (or in
> >general a Call for participation in a prominent spot).
> yes.
> >(as for sponsoring some design I might think of doing that if there is
> >some consensus on what to do)
> Yes, that's one of the hard things.
> >
> >Ok, that much for my $0.02 :-)
> >
> >-- Christian
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