2007-01-31

Last day for hotel reservations!

Today, January 31st, is the last day to make hotel reservations and obtain the conference rate. After today, you'll have to pay the hotel's regular rate, and there's nothing we can do to reduce your costs.

Go to http://us.pycon.org/Addison/Hotels for hotel information and a registration link.

Update: the hotel has sold out of sleeping rooms on Thursday February 22, Friday February 23, Saturday February 24, Tuesday January 27, and Wednesday January 28.

2007-01-27

Thanks to our sponsors

Sponsor support is important in helping cover PyCon's fixed costs. This year we have more sponsors than ever before; the sidebar on us.pycon.org lists all of them. The sponsors include large companies such as Microsoft and Google, familiar Python companies such as Wingware and ActiveState, and Python-using organizations such as OSAF and Canonical.

Thanks to all the sponsors, and to Steve Holden, the sponsorship coordinator.

2007-01-26

Funding PyCon attendance

One of David Goodger's many hats is Funding Coordinator, processing applications from people who need some assistance in making it to PyCon. Yesterday he sent out notification e-mails about the funding decisions. If you applied for funding, you should have received a notice about whether you'll be supported and for how much.

This year the Python Software Foundation is helping 18 people to come to PyCon, spending slightly less than US$9000. We look forward to seeing them all at PyCon!

2007-01-24

One week left for hotel registration

Don't forget to book your hotel room for PyCon 2007!

The special PyCon room rates at the Dallas/Addison Marriott Quorum are US$79/night for 1-2 people, and US$89/night for 3-4 people; there's an additional hotel tax of 13% on top of this rate. This rate is only available until February 1st.

To register online, use the hotel's special event page for PyCon.

If you're looking for a roommate to reduce your costs, see the Room Splitting wiki page.

2007-01-22

Registration count reaches 400; tutorial status

The 400th attendee registered today. We're now certainly ahead of PyCon 2006, which only had 399 online registrations.

The number of available tutorials continues to shrink. "Code Like a Pythonista" is full, and we regret to announce that "Internet Programming With Python" has been cancelled. The remaining tutorials are:
  • Morning session: Using the DB API, Python 101, How to Document a Python Open Source Project, Zope Component Architecture and zc.buildout.
  • Afternoon session: Advanced Web Application Development with TurboGears, Faster Python Programs through Optimization and Extensions II, Testing Tools in Python.

Remember to book your hotel rooms before February 1st to obtain the lower conference rate.

Vendor policies for PyCon

We've come up with a set of policies for vendors who want to have tables at PyCon for selling products or giving demos. Please contact us if you're interested.

2007-01-21

Splitting Taxis from the Airport

Someone asked about ground transport from the airport to the hotel, and sharing rides. A taxi will cost about $40 one-way. There's also the Super Shuttle airport limo (minibus) service, which is cheaper than taking a taxi but reservations may be needed. Public transport is also available, but according to reports it isn't quick. See http://us.pycon.org/Addison/GroundTransit for details on all options.

I started a wiki page for people to arrange taxi splitting: http://us.pycon.org/Addison/TaxiSplitting. Sharing taxi rides may be difficult though, because arrival times are staggered and flights get delayed.

I recommend that anyone interested in sharing a taxis should wear a Python or PyCon T-shirt or sweatshirt when travelling so people can recognize each other. Here's a source of official Python garb: http://www.cafepress.com/pydotorg.

If anyone has other/better ideas, please add a comment.

2007-01-17

PyCon flyers now available

The SpreadTheWord wiki page now links to PDFs of a PyCon flyer in both letter and A4 page sizes. Please print out a few copies and bring them to your local Python user group (or Linux user group, or .NET user group, or Java user group, or...).

Early-bird registration numbers

Early-bird registration is now closed; regular prices (US$260/US$150 student) are now in effect.

Total early-bird registration was 363 people.

To compare with last year: at PyCon 2006, early-bird got 273 registrations. This year's figure is therefore a 32% increase.

Maybe we're just getting better at reminding people to register early and the final attendance figure will be about the same. On the other hand, Doug Napoleone notes that the number of proposals received was also up by 30% (see the discussion of proposal selection for the numbers). A 32% increase in '06's total attendance of 410 would mean 541 attendees.

My intuition is that both factors -- better early-bird advertising, and more total attendees -- are at work. My psychic prediction: final attendance for 2007 will be increased over 2006 to between 450-500 attendees: a significant increase, but not a 30% increase. (Please, no wagering...)

Tutorial cancellation nears; register soon!

Saturday, January 20, is the drop date for tutorials, when the organizers need to decide if any of them should be cancelled due to low attendance. This year a few of the tutorials haven't gotten enough people yet, and are in danger of being dropped. If you're thinking about registering for a tutorial but haven't done so yet, please try to register before Saturday; your registration might be the one to save a tutorial from cancellation.

(I'm deliberately not mentioning which tutorials are at risk, because if a tutorial is on the edge, people may decide to sign up for some other tutorial. This post is intended to encourage everyone to hurry up and register.)

2007-01-16

Morning TurboGears tutorial full

The morning introductory TurboGears tutorial is now full, though there are still a few seats left for the advanced tutorial in the afternoon.

2007-01-15

Last day of early-bird registration

Today is the last day to register for PyCon 2007 at early-bird rates; register for the conference now.

Don't forget to reserve your hotel room, too; to obtain the conference rate, you must register by February 1st.

The introductory Django tutorial, to be held in the morning, is now full.

2007-01-14

First tutorial fills up; Django tutorials expanded, one full

The first tutorial to reach its room capacity is "Faster Python Programs through Optimization and Extensions I", taught by Mike Müller.

Due to the level of interest in the Django tutorials, they've been given more space. I still expect the Django tutorials will fill up today; we don't have that much additional space...

Update: the afternoon "Advanced Django" tutorial, taught by Jacob Kaplan-Moss, is also full.

2007-01-13

Personal Schedule Application for PyCon 2007 Now Available

Doug Napoleone's nifty Personal Schedule Application is now up and running on the PyCon site.

Features include:
  • displays a color-coded, up-to-date schedule
  • displays pop-ups with descriptive information about each event
  • allows selecting events to create your own personal schedule
  • supports iCalendar output of both conference and personal schedules

If you have a PyCon login account, the application also:
  • stores your schedule on the server instead of in a cookie.
  • highlights talks that you're presenting or sessions you're chairing.

To create your own PyCon login account, visit the Site Signup Form, which is independent of your conference registration.

If you store your schedule on the server, your selections are included and summarized in a report for the PyCon organizers. We can therefore see which talks are the most popular, and this will help us schedule them in rooms with enough capacity.

A print-specific stylesheet is in development.

We think the schedule application is very neat, and hope it's useful in planning your PyCon attendance.

2007-01-12

MS Office tutorial replaced by Internet Programming

The "Programming Microsoft Office using Python" tutorial has been cancelled and replaced by "Internet Programming with Python"; see the tutorial outline for more details.

If you've registered for a different afternoon tutorial (or for no afternoon tutorial at all) and want to switch to the new Internet Programming tutorial, write to the conference address (pycon at python.org).

We apologize for the inconvenience.

Reminder: early-bird registration ends Monday

Remember, Monday January 15th is the last day for early-bird registration.

Register for PyCon.

If you're interested in the tutorials you should register as soon as possible. One tutorial is nearing its maximum size; when that limit is reached, registration for that tutorial will be closed.

Suggestions wanted for intellectual property talk

Seen in a comp.lang.python post:

I will be presenting a talk at PyCon, "The Absolute Minimum an Open Source Developer Needs to Know About Intellectual Property." I want to tailor this talk so that it is interesting to as many attendees as possible.

I am familiar with a lot of the internal divisions in the Free Software/Open Source community. My intent is not to advocate for or against any specific position, but rather to promote a common understanding and address specific situations that developers may
encounter. In other words, a problem/solution approach, instead of an argumentative approach.

With that in mind, I had in mind the following subjects:

- A brief primer on intellectual property (what are patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets?)

- What to do when you have an idea you want to develop, but you are working for somebody else

- What it means to incorporate GPL'd modules into your own code

- Ways to protect ideas that you have put into a proprietary software product

- Ways to avoid, work around, or mitigate the effect of software patents

- Licensing, using, and distributing software (comparing and contrasting the GPL, BSD, and Python licenses)

I am interested in hearing about 1) other topics of interest, and 2) the relative level of interest in each topic. To keep within the time limits for my talk, I intend to address the most popular topics in roughly the order of their popularity.

Thanks.

Registration ramps up

The pace of incoming registrations is speeding up. The number of registered attendees reached 100 on Saturday January 6, 18 days after registration was opened. It reached 200 on Thursday the 11th, 5 days later. Will we reach 300 before early registration closes? (The 2006 conference didn't; early-bird ended with 270- or 280-something attendees, and the conference wound up with about 400 attendees total.)

Update: (January 15th) attendee #300 registered this morning.

2007-01-04

Hotel registration problems

(The problem described in this post has now been resolved.)

Several attendees have reported a problem when booking their hotel rooms; they've been told that the conference rate is no longer available and offered a much higher rate. We're talking to the hotel to resolve the problem; if you're given a too-high rate, don't book your room yet and wait until we announce the problem is resolved. (That announcement will be posted here.)

If you've already booked, please wait for the announcement and then call Marriott to fix the problem; if that doesn't work, send an email to (pycon at python.org) and we'll use our hotel contact to change your reservation.

Here's what's probably going on. PyCon has reserved X rooms per night at the conference rate. For most such reservations, the conference rate is no longer available once X rooms have booked. PyCon's contract is different, though: we get the conference rate until the hotel is full. The reservation staff was confused about this last year and they've probably gotten confused again this year.

2007-01-02

Poll: vendor tables at PyCon

The organizers are wondering if there are any vendors of Python-related items (books, software, T-shirts, etc.) that would be interested in having a vendor table at PyCon. We're trying to learn if there's enough interest to make a vendor area worth the effort.

The proposal being suggested: vendors would pay a vendor sponsorship fee of a few hundred dollars and would then get a table (probably a 6-foot size one) in a vendor area. Vendors could be open from after the first plenary session to before the last plenary session; that would be from 10:30AM to 5-something PM. You could store merchandise in a locked but unguarded room, but you'd probably still have to sign a liability waiver so that PyCon isn't responsible if your merchandise is stolen or damaged.

If you'd be interested, please add your name, product/company info and a contact e-mail to us.pycon.org/TX2007/Vendors.

This is a straw poll to gauge if there's interest, not a contract. Adding your name does not oblige you to sign up as a vendor, if/when we decide to have a vendor area and specify the costs and terms.

2007-01-01

Reminder: Two weeks of early-bird registration left

Two weeks are left before PyCon 2007's deadline for early-bird registration; after January 15th, registration fees will be increasing, so make your travel plans, register for the conference, and don't forget to reserve your hotel room.