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PyCon 2011 Interview: Daniel Greenfeld

By Rich Leland

The master of one-handed cartwheels takes time to answer a few questions about his talks at PyCon this year.

Daniel has been selected to give a tutorial, a talks and moderate a panel at PyCon 2011:

About the speaker

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Since summer of 2004 I’ve had this weird compulsion to read Wikipedia’s recent death page every day. I didn’t get my driver’s license until 2010. And thanks to my mother’s keen parenting skills I suspect that oatmeal doesn’t stop growing.

I’ve been doing Python for nearly 6 years, 5 of them professionally. I started professionally on Django 2.5 years ago. I live in Los Angeles and am a co-founder of cartwheelweb.com, a consulting/training firm that specializes in Python and Django.

The talks

Why did you decide to submit a tutorial, talk and panel for PyCon this year?

I figured that if I submitted enough things then maybe one would be accepted. I took a shotgun approach and expected to miss the target completely. I put my heart into the submissions and I guess that paid off.

How did it feel to learn that your submissions were accepted?

Terrified.

I expected to miss. I didn’t expect to hit the bullseye.

PyCon is full of brilliant people who I respect and admire. You can’t walk into a room at PyCon and not meet people who don’t know more than you do on just about everything. Now the pressure is on to make a good impression on all these people who I consider role models and inspirations.

If I had hair on my head it would have turned white by now.

What should one expect to learn from your Pinax Solutions tutorial?

A better question would be “what should one expect to get from the Pinax Solutions tutorial?”

And the answer to that is “Lots of technical details and a lot of practice.”

We’ll go over the nuts and bolts of setting up a Pinax project. Then we’ll go over solutions that myself, Brian Rosner, and others use to solve project requirements. Basically, it will be a dump of some of the patterns and tools that work best in our day-to-day work. Even if you are using django-cms, Satchmo, or plain Django, there is material in it for you.

Then we’ll go into workshop mode for the rest of the tutorial. That means we help you build our project, and if a question you ask could benefit everyone, we’ll show everyone what you are trying to do. After the tutorial officially ends I’ll still be around to help out that afternoon and the next day’s afternoon.

What will you cover in your talk about djangopackages.com?

That it wasn’t just me.

I didn’t work in a vacuum, I had literally thousands of people helping me out. Django Packages was created by myself and my business partner, Audrey Roy, by combining a lot of packages into a single system. Which means I also had the open source Django and Python communities helping me out.

Besides that I’ll get into the Zen of Python, lessons learned, and the wildlife of Kansas.

Give us an overview of what to expect from the How to sell Python panel.

Five brilliant minds discussing how to get Python into the places where we want it to be. I think its safe to assume that people wanting to attend PyCon believe that Python makes a difference. My hope is that at PyCon 2012 someone will come up to me and say, “Hey Danny, that panel help me get Python into our organization and everyone is delight with what it’s done for us!”

PyCon 2011

As someone who has attended PyCon in the past, what keeps you coming back?

Discovering ideas and technology that takes my breath away. The chance to meet with old friends and make new ones. Finally, I always look forward to gushing over Guido van Rossum like a adolescent over Justin Bieber.

What talks are you looking forward to attending this year at PyCon?

See Daniel present

I’ve seen Daniel speak on a number of occasions, whether it was at previous PyCons or in Washington, DC before he moved to Los Angeles. I would encourage you to attend one of his accepted talks.

If you haven’t already, register for PyCon! If you’re on the fence, check out the full list of talks, tutorials and other general information. It’s bound to be another great year.

Comments

Hakan Bakkalbasi said…
Danny's a great teacher and hacker - his talks should not be missed.

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