Come drop by the booth — we should be pretty easy to find. Just listen for the accordion.
My history with Python
Toronto programmer D’Arcy Cain was looking for a programmer to help him develop an ecommerce site for a client. At the time, the stack that web developers needed to know was LAMP — Linux, Apache, MySQL, and Perl (later expanded to include other languages whose names start with “P”). D’Arcy’s preferred stack was BSD, Apache, Postgres, and Python, which at the time was considered to be a contrarian choice.
He asked if I was willing to learn Python, and I said “Sure! I can pick it up after I get back from Burning Man, on the first day after Labor Day…”
He said “No — I need you to hit the ground running on the first day after Labor Day.”
And I said, “All right. I’ll make it happen.” So I packed my laptop and a copy of O’Reilly’s Learning Python and took it with me to Black Rock Desert.
Since Burning Man is more of party-all-night place, it can be quite peaceful in the morning. The rental RV that I shared with San Francisco-based artist David Newman and our friend Nancy was an oasis of calm with a good generator, and I was able to spend a couple of hours a day going through Python exercises, catch a nap, and then strike out onto the playa in the afternoon for the next evening’s mayhem.
By the time I got back to Toronto, I was ready to start coding in Python, and a descendant of that original site and its business still exists today. I figured that any programming language you can learn at Burning Man has to be good, so I’ve been using it to get things done since then, including putting together the Tampa Bay tech events list that appears on this blog weekly.
In spite of my long-time use of Python, even during that period when Ruby was ascendant thanks to Rails, I’ve never gone to PyCon — until now. I’m looking forward to it!