I make a decent effort to keep up with what's happening in the python comunity, but― gosh darnit ―it's hard! I think that's why conferences exist. They give you a day or two to focus solely on meeting people and catching up with what's going on in the community.
I particularly like the smaller, regional events like the one I attended this weekend: PyArkansas . Here's a few reasons why:Cost: Smaller, regional conferences tend to be less expensive ( Free in this case! ). Travel: It's not thousands of miles away, so travelling isn't a huge burden. I rented a van, and took six of my good friends on a three-hour drive ) Size: I think there were about 150 people there. Not too overwhelming, and you can still meet a good deal of peple. So... what did I learn?
This is a bit of a brain dump ( don't worry, it'll be short ), so please forgive the terseness.If you work with GeoDjango , you really need to keep up with Adam Fast I'm a big fan of Django, but it's always nice to have Kenneth Reitz challenging us to re-think how we build web apps . Gabriel Grant talked about Stack.io and about building rich applications with Django using Django REST Framework and Ember.js . I'd seem Ember.js in passing, but somehow I'd completely missed (or forgot) about Django REST Framework. Unfortunately, I walked in late to Jeff Bauer 's talk on Salt , but I caught just enough to really whet my appetite. I'm a Chef user, but salt seems to have a much lower barrier to entry, though I'm not sure it completely solves the same problems I also bumped into Larry Hastings. I'm not much of a podcast listener but I'd highly suggest checking out his podcast: radio free python . It looks very well-done, and some quick google searchs seem to indicate his listeners think so, too. He also hooked me up with a cool sticker. Thanks, Larry! I also need to shout out to Lyndsy Simon , who created both the PyArkansas and the Work for Pie decals in the swag bag. Great work! :)
I'm sure I missed meeting many other awesome people, too. If you've never been to a regional conference like this, make it a point to go! You won't be sorry.
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