Monday, February 16, 2015

What's New with the Sprints

Never tried sprinting at PyCon? Try it this year!


As long as there has a been a PyCon, the sprints have been part of it. This year the grand tradition of sprinting will continue with an ever growing list of projects taking advantage of the venue and the right-after-PyCon timing to come together and write some serious code.


Sprints have always welcomed newcomers, because both sides benefit - the projects gain from fresh eyes and brains, and the new sprinters usually find that they gain enormous insights into a particular problem or library, into Python, and even into coding in general.

While sprinting has always been a great thing to try, this year we're adding some features to make it an even better experience for first time sprinters.


First of all, we'll be holding an "Intro to Sprinting" workshop on Sunday night before the sprints start. Presented by the folks from Open Hatch, this session will help bring you up to speed on what to expect while sprinting, how to participate, as well as what projects are particularly newcomer friendly. We'll have soft drinks and snacks at the workshop, and once we're done, we'll organize a few groups to go out to dinner, so you can connect with your fellow first time sprinters (and maybe some people from the sprints). If you're interested in this workshop, please visit our registration page to let us know.


Second, we'll be working with the sprint leaders to identify the sprints that are most newcomer friendly, and giving them whatever advice we can help them welcome newcomers to their projects.


Finally, we'll have a help table set up for at least the first day of the sprints, to give you any help with the sprints you might need, from installing and using common tools to suggestions on how to get the most out sprinting or just talking about how it's going.


Great! I'm interested in sprinting, what do I do?


The first thing to do would be to make sure you have a place to stay for the extra days. If you've booked a room through the PyCon registration system, you'll need to contact the registration team at pycon8-reg@cteusa.com as soon as possible to request the extra nights. The sprinting itself (along with lunch every day) is free, so your only expenses are your room and other meals.


Once you have that taken care of, the registration form for the Intro to Sprinting tutorial is here. This is also free so please sign up and join us.


But What about the Veteran Sprinters?


Not to worry, we didn't forget you! We do want to keep the sprints fresh, and to keep improving them for veterans as well as newcomers. To do that we'll be making a few additions and few tweaks.


We'll be moving the time lunch is served to be a bit later, in the 1:30 or 2:00 pm range, because we've noticed that after a week of PyCon people tend not to get up quite as early (go figure). In addition most of the sprint lunches will be buffet style to let people eat and chat at their own pace.


We'll also be making lunch on Monday more of a reception, complete with a few remarks by a guest speaker.


So plan to sprint!

You can check out the projects currently planning to sprint at the PyCon Sprints page and if you're interested in the sprinting workshop just sign up at https://events.openhatch.org/events/5. And get ready for some serious sprinting right after PyCon!

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