The delay in writing about PyCon is procrastination, as much as getting myself involved with too many things at the same time.
I am happy to have attended this memorable event and hope to spread some cheer with this report.
Beware, looooong post alert. Get your popcorn!
Scroll down to Day 1 if you want to skip my personal peeve stories.Backstory My way to PyLadies
For me the first meetup of PyLadies was about learning basics of python, I had no idea about the global community that is motivated to make a safe environment for women contributors. Despite being a beginner in Python, I seemed to have suggestions aplenty and it seemed to me that I could get/attract more members for the next sessions. I gave a small communication guideline talk during the second meetup and it was pretty much a sealed deal that I was happy to be a part of this community. What was most inspiring for me was the fact that Anwesha was so motivated to pull the group together, despite no clear path ahead for the group. It was disappointing that there were very few who attended regularly, nevertheless the few who did became good friends and I guess at this point we all fire each others imagination.Tickets and more
I found out about PyCon from dgplug . The goodman was out for work and I could not imagine leaving Ira without either of us. It was not possible to attend the conference, clearly. I knew of all that was happening behind the scenes how PyLadies did not get a table, how Rupali had, as always, returned as our knight (dame, maybe?) in shining armor. RedHat had magnanimously opened its booth for the community and welcomed all contributors to showcase their stuff. Wow!
Almost all of dgplug was attending the PyCon and there were questions about who is joining when almost all the time. One visit from Kushal and Anwesha was all it took for us to consider the experiment of leaving Ira with her grandparents for a night. Tickets were jhatapati booked and plans made for stay. Thanks to Kushal and Anwesha for letting me be the haddi in their kebab during conference days. Truth be told, my mind was constantly occupied with what would happen with Ira ever since my tickets were booked. The husband is talented which enables him to do some nice things like printing few python print t-shirts for PyLadies.
I and the husband had made an LED lit jellyfish costume for Ira which was actually an umbrella based on this tutorial. Me and Anwesha planned to use it as a photo prop at the booth. My original plan was to carry Cookie(who is an annoying battery operated toy) which was to be controlled by a raspberry-pi and a simple python program. However, I wasted a lot of time and it was not ready on time and Ira was appropriately mortified to see her toy all opened up and confiscated it from me. I designed the 2 posters for the PyLadies table.
I had my doubts about using the prop until the last day. I remember giving Anwesha a panic call-
me: Lets not take the umbrella, it will look like a gimmick and no one would be interested. What if we are not taken seriously?!? *panic* *panic*
Anwesha(calmly, uncharacteristically): Ok..dont worry. You get the prop. We will see what to do. By the way, can you prepare a lightning talk?
me: WHAT? WHEN? “ME”?? *more panic*
Err, at this point I think I should do two posts. This is taking too long Never mind.Day 0
So on Day 0, I was still in Pune and I got the posters printed, it was raining incessantly. I PyLady-fied the umbrella by printing the geek lady and sticking it on the umbrella. I had an exchange of images with uber-talented Trishna who was supposed to print the badges.Day 1
I was supposed to leave at 3:00AM in the morning, in preparing for the lightning talk and catching up with the good-man, I was awake till midnight. Ira, as if on cue, woke up sharp at 2:30AM and bawled to see me leave, making it unbearably difficult to leave. However, I had to go AND I was out with a huge suitcase for my umbrella prop and posters. I reached the venue at 8:00AM.
The registration desk was well organized. The volunteers were extremely helpful. I spotted a few people who looked like professionals at breakfast, almost 75% of the crowd were students. This is my first PyCon, I have always attended business conferences from my proprietary bubble days
I finished my breakfast and went to the booth. Pravin and Pooja joined me soon. Pooja is like the backbone of the group quiet, calm and extremely resourceful. I was so glad they were there. We started with setting the booth. Trishna, Janki , Kushal and Anwesha joined us and the posters were up in no time. The RedHat guys were busy with setting up their booth too. It was a very bustling, colorful booth. I had goofed with the controller for the LED which the cute-couple(Pravin & Pooja) quickly fixed and our umbrella was glowing The photo prop was a huge hit.
PSSI announced Dr.Ajith Kumar B.P, a scientist at Inter University Accelerator Centre, as the winner of “Kenneth Gonsalves Award 2016”. What inspiring work! What was most inspiring is the enthusiasm the achievers have in doing more, contributing more.
Keynote by Baishampayan Ghose was a very interesting start to the conference.
I was introduced to Devi , the veteran contributor and mom. It was lovely meeting her, personally for me because I aspire to be working like her. I also found out about anandology.com , which I am referring nowadays to practice some python exercises.
Vijay Bung had an interactive Request for Volunteers and suggestions session at the open spaces. Me and Pooja attended it. This was in continuation with the Python month as organized by PSSI. Some valuable suggestions were noted and we made way to lunch. Rupali ended up being alone at the booth managing RedHat and PyLadies single-handedly for some time.
Rest of the day was spent mostly at the booth talking about the how, when, what and why of PyLadies, Pune chapter. It was heartening to see so many women contributors come up and share their stories, encouraging for us as a team to keep up what we are doing.
I attended Anwesha’s talk and the delightful keynote by Van L. I will never forget the 3 tipsCome to contribute, Meet someone new & Say thanks We were all treated to a great dinner hosted for PyCon speakers and volunteers. Another great avenue to network and also good food. I was attemptin
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