I'm in Washington, DC at PyCon 2005. There are a bunch of photos on Flickr and some nice writeups at the PyCon blog. It's good to see a few familiar faces from the Python world again. I also got to meet Raymond Hettinger (who has done a tremendous amount of work on Python and gave us generator expressions, among other things) and Richard Jones (who leads the Roundup project). Here i am with Richard and David Goodger.
What Richard has done for the past few years is possibly one of the closest things that might happen to a programmer's dream come true. A few years ago i wrote a design document that was basically a wishlist for all the things i wanted in a bug tracker. Richard and his team have taken that document and its successor and built the software that does everything i asked for. Thank you, Richard! I've used it and it works great. If you need a tracking tool, you should try it. It's flexible enough to track all kinds of things — not just bugs but any kind of work item; for instance, Richard has used it quite successfully to coordinate lots of reviewers for a paper reviewing process.
Michelle Levesque (yay, more Canadians!) gave probably the best presentation of the conference. She talked about the problem of too many Web frameworks for Python — there are so many out there right now that it's extremely confusing for someone who just wants to get a simple website going. Nearly everyone in the Python community is so familiar with this problem that, at even the mention of typing "Python web application framework" into Google, the audience burst into laughter. Then Michelle flipped to this slide:
I think i'll rant a bit more about this problem in a separate entry.
As we gathered for the PSF member meeting and told everyone else to leave the room, i thought back to a recent post with a sense of irony. Here i was, just after having complained about unintentional exclusiveness at SXSW, participating in an explicitly exclusive activity. I noticed that there was not a single woman at the meeting, and pointed this out. Andrew Kuchling mentioned the recent blog discussions about women choosing to go to SXSW rather than ETech. I'm glad that we ended up having a discussion about what we could do to diversify representation at conferences and the PSF.