[PyAR2] pyArkansas 2008

Greg Lindstrom gslindstrom at gmail.com
Tue Jun 24 01:28:04 CEST 2008

Hello Everyone,

I've been running under the radar for a few weeks, but am still
excited about us putting on a Python "Mini Conference" in October
(October 4th, if memory serves).  UCA has been nothing short of
gracious in allowing us to host this on their campus, so "thanks" to
all of you for helping out.  I have spoken with other Python User
Groups and none of them have had the same experience.  Hopefully, this
will be a win-win situation; we can get lots of good publicity for
Python and UCA at the same time.

Anyhow, in a very rough brush, this is what I have in mind;

It will run from 9AM-3PM (maybe 4PM).  This would give us a couple of
sessions; morning and afternoon), with a lunch break.  Do we know if
the UCA cafeteria will be open and, if so, available for our
participants to use?  Should we try to come up with a sponsor for

We have 2 (or 3?) rooms per session. Certainly, one session should be
an "introduction to Python" or "Python 101" class, as I am planning on
sending fliers to local high schools and Colleges/Universities.   I
could see this class spanning both sessions.

Many on the list asked for information on packages/modules.  I'm not
sure if they were asking about how to use modules and packages or how
to write their own (if you are out there reading this, please let me
know!).  I'd like to show off the Django web framework (maybe someone
else is better suited for it!).  What other classes might be cool?  Do
we set up "open space" for people to get up and show off their cool

I'd like to end the day with a short "keynote".  I believe that one of
the new UCA faculty is doing research using Python (I do not believe
Python is the focus of the research).  It would be nice, IMHO, to have
someone show that this is a serious programming language that is being
used.  We could also have door prizes; O"Reilley will send us books
and Elegant Stitches will give us some polo shirts to give away.

Concerning Elegant Stitches; for those of you that don't know, it is
my wife's home-based (for now) business.  For the last three years we
have offered shirts and such with the Python logo -- with the blessing
of the Python Software Foundation -- at PyCon.  We are going to be at
pyOhio later next month and, hopefully, at OSCON in 2010.  We just got
word from OSCON that a table costs $5,000.00 and an entry in the swag
bag is $1,500.00!  You can see our work on the web at
www.wearpython.com.  Is there an issue with having vendors at
pyArkasas?  I guess that's a question for our UCA friends.  We might
be able to get O'Reilley down here if there is room for them and the
University allows it.

Who can I ask for funding?  Does Acxiom still donate to such causes?
Who do I write?  The PSF might send us some $$, too, but I'd really
like to keep this local. I'm starting to put together a budget and
thing we can do this for under $1000.00 (mostly promotion; printing
and mailing).

And finally, if this goes well, do we want to try something similar
"up North" in the Spring?

Let me know what you think and any ideas you have.  This is *our*
conference (not mine :-).


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