Monday, February 29, 2016

Full schedule is up — and Financial Aid closes tomorrow!

Everything is ready!

With these final three releases, the PyCon 2016 schedule is now complete — thanks to the long hours worked by the program committee chairs and co-chairs and reviewers. The tutorial chairs particularly wish to thank Allen Downey, Carol Willing, Jake Vanderplas, and Harry Percival for their help in selecting this year’s slate of tutorials.

Tutorials are 3-hour classes that take place over the two days before the main conference. They are a great way to dive deep into subjects that PyCon’s talks cannot cover in as much depth. Signing up is easy, whether you have already registered for the main conference or not: visit our registration page, click the big red button, and select the “Tutorials and Sponsor Tutorials” add-on.

Sponsor workshops are offered over the same two days as the paid tutorials, but are free! You do have to register, so we can plan capacity, but signing up incurs no extra cost for your registration. Workshops can be a great way to fill in any gaps between the tutorials you want to attend, by giving you the chance to learn from some of the top vendors used by Python programmers today.

The Poster session is always popular because there is no difficult choice about which poster to attend — you get to see them all! The posters are all displayed together in the Expo Hall on the final morning of the conference. You are free to browse them all, stopping to talk with the presenter when a poster particularly interests you.

Tutorials and workshops fill quickly, so register soon.

Finally, note that Financial Assistance applications are due tomorrow, on March 1st — if you have been wanting to attend PyCon but cannot afford it, now is the time to apply!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Startups will soon be pitching to join 2016’s Startup Row!

PyCon’s Startup Row kicks off our 2016 season with a pitch event March 9th, hosted by SF Python at Yelp! HQ. This continues a tradition started for PyCon Montreal 2014, where Startup Row held pitch events around North America to select participants. A benefit of this approach is to guarantee geographic diversity in our featured startups.

On March 9th, early-stage startups will present at SF Python’s audience of over 200 for a chance to connect with the global Python community at PyCon Portland. Joining on the judging panel are Bebe Chueh Chief Marketing Officer of Legalzoom Local, bethanye McKinney Blount founder of Cathy Labs, Christine Spang founder of Startup Row alumnus Nylas, Jessica Scorpio founder of Getaround, and Kat Manalac partner at Y Combinator.

Startup Row will award the winner selected by our judges with a free booth in the expo hall and two PyCon badges, so that they can join the 11 other early-stage startups on Startup Row in our Expo Hall at the Oregon Convention Center.

If you founded or work at a startup founded in the last two years and currently have less than 15 employees, the organizers of Startup Row want to speak with you.

Apply now to pitch on March 9th for a spot on Startup Row!

Coming up later in the month are events in Seattle on March 21st and Chicago on March 30th. The event in Seattle is in collaboration with Techstars Seattle and will be held in Startup Hall on University of Washington’s campus. Braintree is hosting the Chicago pitch event. Adam Forsyth our supporter at Braintree also hosted a successful event for Startup Row in 2014.

Startups in Seattle and Chicago, apply here to be considered!


Judges for our SF Python Startup Row Event:

  • Bebe Chueh, Chief Marketing Office Legalzoom Local Bebe Chueh cofounded AttorneyFee, acquired by Legalzoom in summer 2014. Currently as Chief Marketing Officer of Legalzoom Local, Bebe prioritizes building value in the product for all stakeholders and profitability of Legalzoom Local both short-term and in the more distant horizon.
  • Bethanye McKinney Blount, Founder Cathy Labs Bethanye McKinney Blount, a Texas native, is a technology leader with over 20 years of experience delivering great products and scalable infrastructure. She was briefly reddit’s first VP of Engineering, after working on some of Facebook’s most complex infrastructure projects.
  • Christine Spang, Founder & CTO Nylas Christine went to MIT, dropped out of an operating systems graduate program to be an early engineer at Ksplice, and most recently cofounded Nylas, a startup building an email platform. Recently Forbes named Christine to its “30 under 30: Enterprise Software” list.
  • Jessica Scorpio, Founder Getaround Jessica Scorpio is a founder and Director of Marketing at Getaround, a peer-to-peer carsharing company. Scorpio previously founded IDEAL, a not-for-profit network for entrepreneurs and young leaders.
  • Kat Manalac, Partner Y Combinator Kat Manalac is a partner at Y Combinator and originally joined as its first Director of Outreach. Kat focuses on finding great entrepreneurs for the program.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Announcing the Keynote Speakers for PyCon 2016

We are excited to announce our keynote speakers for PyCon 2016!
Each speaker will be featured at one of our plenary sessions, of which there are four — a plenary session that opens each of the three main conference days at PyCon, and a final plenary session at the close of the main conference at the end of the third day.
All of the following details are also available on our main conference web site on the Keynotes page, if you want to reference them there:
https://us.pycon.org/2016/events/keynotes/

Parisa Tabriz

Security Princess
Parisa Tabriz has worked on information security for over a decade and as a (self-appointed) “Security Princess” of Google for the last 8+ years. She started as a “hired hacker” software engineer for Google’s security team. As an engineer, she found and closed security holes in many of Google’s products, and taught other engineers how to do the same.
Today, Parisa manages Google’s Chrome security engineering teams, whose goal is to make Chrome the safest way to browse the web, and generally improve security on the Internet. She also is a reserve for the U.S. Digital Service, whose mission is to improve the state of critical government technology.

K Lars Lohn

Hippie Biker at Mozilla
At first, you’d think K Lars Lohn is some character from a biker bar on the bad side of town. However, speaking with him dispels that image in favor of, perhaps, a professor from Hogwarts. Lars is an eccentric, skeptic and heretic.
Lars has had a diverse career spanning 40 years. His early adoption of C++ in the late 80s gained him a formidable reputation as an emergency services programmer. Lars adopted Python in 2002. Lars currently works for Mozilla Corporation where he has been the primary engineer behind the Firefox crash reporting system, Socorro.
Lars lives in a yurt on organic farm in the Willamette Valley of Oregon. Never having understood the word “bored”, Lars hacks hardware, restores old pin ball machines, draws mazes, makes 3D printable designs, plays electronic woodwinds, grows exotic carnivorous plants and rides a noisy Harley.

Lorena Barba

Computational Scientist
Lorena A. Barba is Associate Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the George Washington University in Washington, DC. She has MSc and PhD degrees in Aeronautics from the California Institute of Technology and BSc and PEng degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Universidad Técnica Federico Santa María in Chile. Previous to joining GW, she was Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Boston University (2008–2013) and Lecturer/Senior Lecturer of Applied Mathematics at the University of Bristol, UK (2004–2008).
Barba is an Amelia Earhart Fellow of the Zonta Foundation (1999), an awardee of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) First Grant scheme (UK, 2007), an NVIDIA Academic Partner award recipient (2011), and a recipient of the National Science Foundation Early CAREER award (2012). She was named CUDA Fellow by NVIDIA in 2012, and is a sought-after speaker about high-performance computing, fast and efficient algorithms, and computational science.

Cris Ewing

Plone Foundation Member
Cris Ewing is a husband and father of two, and an independent developer with nearly 20 years of experience building software. He started in the field of computer music, and since 2001 has worked building web-based applications.
He has been involved with Plone since 2006 and has served on the board of directors of the Plone Foundation. He teaches web development in Python for the University of Washington Professional and Continuing Education program and has established the Python program at Code Fellows in Seattle, WA.

Guido van Rossum

Python’s Creator
Guido van Rossum is the author of the Python programming language. He continues to serve as the “Benevolent Dictator For Life” (BDFL), meaning that he continues to oversee the Python development process, making decisions where necessary. He is currently employed by Dropbox.

Van Lindberg

Chair of the Python
Software Foundation
Van Lindberg is Vice President of Intellectual Property at Rackspace. He is trained as a computer engineer and lawyer, but what he does best is “translate” to help businesses, techies and attorneys understand each other. Van likes working with both computer code and legal code. For the past several years, he has been using natural language processing and graph theory to help him digest and map the U.S. Patent Database. Van is currently chairman of the board of the Python Software Foundation, as well as the author of Intellectual Property and Open Source.

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Announcing the PyCon 2016 Talks Schedule

The Talks committee has been hard at work since the Call For Proposals closed 5 weeks ago, and today we are thrilled to present the result — here are the talks that the committee has chosen for PyCon 2016 in Portland, Oregon!

https://us.pycon.org/2016/schedule/

Every committee member is a volunteer who has given the conference many hours of their own time to make PyCon an event that serves the Python community. They were helped along in the process this year by the new talk selection web app that the committee chair wrote. The app lets people read proposals and cast votes whenever they find the time, instead of making them attend pre-scheduled meetings online. We hope this made participation possible for Python community members whose work schedule, family situation, or time zone made it difficult or impossible to help select talks in previous years.

As always, the committee faced a daunting task with determination:

  • The talks committee received 528 talk proposals
  • They knew the conference only has room for 95 talks
  • 45 people served on this year’s talks committee

In the first round of review, each proposal was evaluated on its own, against a fixed set of criteria:

  • The committee offered 11,371 votes
  • They nominated 123 proposals directly into the second round
  • They wrote 1,322 messages
  • Of those, 298 were feedback to the author
  • Every proposal received 11 or more reviews
  • 6 committee members managed to review every single proposal!

In the second round of review, proposals were grouped by topic, and committee members selected the best few talks from each batch:

  • 319 proposals made it into the second round
  • They were grouped into 68 batches
  • The committee offered 1,675 votes
  • They wrote 299 more messages
  • 34 voters participated
  • Every batch received 15 or more reviews
  • The result was 95 talks that fit PyCon’s schedule!

The conference offers its thanks to this year’s Talks committee Chair and Co-Chair, Ned Jackson Lovely and Karen Rustad Tölva, as well as to every committee member who worked long hours to make this process succeed. We were also helped along in keeping a tight schedule by the many speakers who submitted their proposal well before the deadline, which let the committee get to work early and start their review process before the Call for Proposals was even closed.

We look forward to making more schedule announcements in the coming two weeks — the list of keynote speakers, the poster presentations, and the slate of tutorials. Stay tuned!