Why Moscow Python Conf is now ++

    We gathered with Oleg Bunin ( olegbunin ) and Valentin Dombrovsky to talk about how to prepare a cool conference about Python together by the fall, and recorded a video.

    Under the cut our conversation in text form. In particular, the answer to the most important question why conferences are needed at all . And I want to note, not in order to learn something - they are now studying on the Internet (for example, in Habré :).

    We talked a little about trends in the Python ecosystem, about the topics of the future conference and organizational features. By the way, the discussion is open, and everyone can invite us to call a specific speaker or suggest a direction. See what we already have and turn on.

    Oleg : Hello everyone. Talk about this fall. Today our guest is Valentin and Gregory, who know something about Python [Python]. Tell everyone!

    Gregory : Firstly, he is Python.

    Oleg : Excuse me, tell us about Python.

    Valentine: Hi Oleg. With us is still a wonderful Oleg Bunin. As they say, I do not know who these people are, but Oleg is interviewing them. Yes, Grisha and I are the evangelists of the Moscow Python community, which appeared in 2012 under the name Moscow Django (this is such a Python framework). Six years ago, in March 2012, we had the idea to launch a community for developers. The idea arose from the fact that I was the director of marketing for the development studio, which was engaged in the development of Django. As an idea to promote this studio, we decided to launch a community.

    We had a small company called Sevenquark. We have teamed up with the community for startups Greenfield Project and on March 1, 2012 we held our first event, which was attended by 20 people. This idea quickly got accustomed, and we have grown. During these six years, we have grown to a community in which we have more than 5,000 people.

    Oleg : In my opinion, this is now the most popular programming language.

    Grigory : One of the most popular.

    Oleg : After Java. And Perl :)

    Grigoriy : It's very difficult to compare, because there is JavaScript, a bloody enterprise Java, there is C #, there are all sorts of interesting things like Go.

    But, of course, Python positions are very strong.

    Valentin : And recently they have been increasing with the popularity of machine learning and artificial intelligence. We can talk about this later when we talk about these technologies in Python. For six years, we have grown into a community that has already held 58 mitaps. We spend them monthly. About two hundred people come to us at every mitap. Meetings are held in the largest companies: Yandex, Rambler, Mail.ru Group, Saran and so on.

    Oleg : What else does the community do besides meetings?

    Valentin : Our community consists of 5,000 people, as I have already said, we count them on the mailing list, including our wonderful evangelists.

    Oleg : This is the largest Russian-speaking community.

    Grigory : There is a little bit.

    Valentin : I think - yes, we are the largest and most active IT-community. The things we do are pretty unique. At least, I do not yet know those who are doing the same as we. The Moscow Python community has five evangelists: your humble servant, Grigory Petrov, Mikhail Korneev, Ilya Lebedev and Vladimir Filonov. Together we do different activities besides mitapov. This Learn Python  is a course for those who want to learn Python from scratch. We have already held nine sets and since September we are recruiting the tenth. And the conferences that we started to do in 2016.

    Oleg : Why conference? Gathered mitapami and collected.

    ValentineA: The idea was born - to select the best of the best from that list of Python experts and do what we call megamitap. This is a whole day long mint, at which the best speakers speak, talk about their practices, technologies and transfer their knowledge to the community. The idea was to make this a reporting event in our community, where we tell how we are developing and what we plan to do.

    Oleg : Meeting of shareholders.

    Grigory : Something like. When more than four hundred people come to the mitap, a reasonable question arises: since there are so many of us gathered, we need to play a conference.

    Oleg : Do they receive invitations from you to meetings? Every month you hold a meeting.

    Valentine: Yes. Now, except for the month when the conference is held, this is October, we are really holding monthly meetings, without taking breaks.

    Our plan is to conduct 11 meetings a year.

    Oleg : In 2016 was the first conference. Tell me about her. Did you get what you wanted? What went further? Where decided to develop?

    Valentin : In 2016, we gathered the first conference in the Izmailovo hotel complex. For the first experience it was not bad. Then presented 16 reports in two streams.

    Oleg : It was one day, yes?

    Valentine : Yes. The format of the conference and the content of the reports met the needs of the audience. People liked it, but perhaps there was some leniency because it was the first experience. We tried to emphasize this at the conference: “Now there will be many jambs and because of this it will be especially interesting,” and there were jambs.

    Oleg: That we, as the organizers of the conference, see the joint. In most cases, visitors it is invisible.

    Valentin : That is what I wanted to say. Even if it somehow concerns the public, people often pay little attention to it. Therefore, it was quite soulful. After the event we sat in the Circle brasserie. It was all over, but we decided to continue and received positive feedback.

    Oleg : How many participants gathered in 2017?

    ValentineA: In 2017, there were about two hundred people. We tried to expand, increase the scale of the event. We spent it on the Technopolis site. It coincidentally coincided that in the same year Yandex conducted the Yet another Conference. Therefore, we decided that this is a confirmation that the site is quite high quality. It seems to me that there was quite a photogenic space, a beautiful room. We invited foreign speakers. We had four foreign speakers with three presentations and two held a workshop - such an interesting scheme. It was again a one-day event on two streams of reports. Then we decided to continue again.

    Oleg : What about the plans for this year? Will Moscow Python? I'm a little cunning, asking this question, of course.

    Grigory : Of course it will.

    Oleg: Yes, of course, will be. This year we will be doing Moscow Python Conf ++ with the community. We are such a conference organizer. Over the past 10 years, we have learned how to organize great conferences, but we don’t know anything about Python. Guys know everything about Python. We decided to unite and make a Mega event, which will be many times more than last year.

    Set yourself a new bar, take it and make it very interesting.

    I'll tell you a little about the technical details, and then I will try the guys about the content, about the most delicious. It will be 2 days on October 22 and 23 in the center of Moscow on the nice, sweet Infospace, from which we started HighLoad ++ 11 years ago. Two full days, several tracks with reports, mitaps and other various activities during the day. Mandatory party on the first day. A couple of years ago we started doing them always and we really, really like them. We are able to organize them so that it would be interesting to socialize, make friends, and make the party useful too. This concerns the organizational part.

    Grigory : How is a conference different from a meeting, school, educational courses?

    Valentine: I'll interrupt a bit. In addition to being Gregory the Evangelist of Moscow Python, he is also the head of the Program Committee.

    Oleg : Therefore, all the bumps on him.

    Grigory : It was an unexpected turn, but I will try to deploy it in a favorable direction. Conference is a special format . Beliefs on the Internet: why in the modern world go to a conference, because everything can be found on Google? I went to the site and read the official documentation. But it is like paper books.

    No matter how crazy it sounds, but if you want to learn something big and complex, it makes sense to find a paper book where a person spent several years collecting all this knowledge in one place.

    The paper book, of course, does not teach you to use the latest version of TensorFlow, because it will have time to become obsolete. But a paper book will allow you to learn psychology, biology or Japanese much better than documentation on the Internet. The books have their own niche, the conference also has its own niche.

    We are not doing the conference to teach someone something. Guests do not come to the conference to listen to the reports, oddly enough. Now I will reveal to you the secret. I did a lot of conferences and participated a lot. They come to the conference first of all in order to communicate. This is a special place where speakers give presentations who have serious programming experience working in the coolest companies. They came to the conference to answer questions.

    Who are the guests of the conference? Who ever goes to an IT conference? I'm talking about Moscow Python Conf ++. This is a developer who professionally uses Python in his work or wants to use it for some reason. He has interesting situations, some questions, difficulties. Every day at work, he does something for 8 hours, and something turns out, but something does not. Not all of this can be boosted. He reads the conference program and sees: “This man has been working at Google with machine learning, and also on the subject I have been doing for the past two years. If I come to the conference, listen to his report, then come up to him and ask a question, then a top specialist in this area will answer me. ” Everyone understands that if you write him an e-mail - there is a queue. But if you come to the conference, you can talk with industry leaders, with the same developers, who use the same technology each their working day. It is an order of magnitude more efficient than communicating on Facebook and asking questions on Stackoverflow and Reddit. Stackoverflow can answer a technical question from the “How to do such a thing?” Series. No one there will share practical experience, because most experienced developers still work. With all my love for Stackoverflow, I use it a lot in my work, but still there are few top experts. They work at their jobs, fly to the conference several times a year. It is there that they can be caught and find out what and how they are doing. Stackoverflow can answer a technical question from the “How to do such a thing?” Series. No one there will share practical experience, because most experienced developers still work. With all my love for Stackoverflow, I use it a lot in my work, but still there are few top experts. They work at their jobs, fly to the conference several times a year. It is there that they can be caught and find out what and how they are doing. Stackoverflow can answer a technical question from the “How to do such a thing?” Series. No one there will share practical experience, because most experienced developers still work. With all my love for Stackoverflow, I use it a lot in my work, but still there are few top experts. They work at their jobs, fly to the conference several times a year. It is there that they can be caught and find out what and how they are doing.

    Valentin : Friends, write in the comments of the topic or speakers that you would like to see at the conference. We, as a community of developers, will try to take into account your wishes and draw up a program that meets your requirements.

    Grigory : We also have a special Google Doc that you can comment. We, the program committee, have already received a bunch of topics and fifty speakers. You are welcome to finish writing there whom you would like to see at the conference. But not simply: “Ahhh, Guido van Rossum is alive!”, But for those to whom you want to ask questions, topics on which you have problems in your work, the answers to which will help you to do something cool.

    Oleg: Grisha rightly speaks about the possibility of communicating at a conference with people who are hard to get into everyday life. We, as the organizers, are well aware of this, and at the moment we have the established most optimal from our point of view format of the conference. In order to organize such communication, facilitate it and spur, we have come up with many different actions, organizational chips.

    First, it is a flow of mitaps. Mitap at the conference is a very small chamber meeting of 10-15 people dedicated to a very narrow specific topic. Our speakers enjoy it. For example, in order to answer questions after the report, to divert the audience and consider some narrow segment of the report among those for whom it is very important, for whom it is to discuss the specific use of Phyton, some library or something else it is important here, now with this person.

    Secondly, this exhibition. We at the exhibition do not work marketers. We try to minimize the work of HR and maximize the work of technical specialists so that you can come to the exhibition, ask a question and get a specific answer.

    Thirdly, the party at which all the speakers remain.

    Fourthly, after the report is completed, there is a discussion area with a flipchart near each hall, where the speaker continues to answer questions that he did not have time to answer within the report itself.

    You said you got 50 themes already. Yes?

    Grigory : 50 potential speakers. There are several dozens of them. Python is a rather unique language in that it is truly general purpose.

    Everything is done in Python: web applications, surprise — desktop applications, and even more surprise — mobile applications, math, testing, automation.

    Now in Python they make Machine Learning, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence. The top-end framework for working with Machine Learning TensorFlow is on Python's shoulders.

    Valentine : Those who want to stop the uprising machines, you need to stop the development of Python.

    Grigory : Our main task, as a program committee, is to make the program diverse. I constantly remember that those who want to ask questions go to the conference. I want as many developers as possible to find in the program one or two speakers on topics where they have something to ask.

    Oleg : Do I understand correctly how the program is built? Phyton and some practical applications. So?

    Gregory: Not only practical applications, but also some parts of the ecosystem . Python, for example, has burning issues. Just the fact that you are helping to make a two-day conference in several streams will help us uncover topics such as “Migration from 2.7 to 3.x” - this is just one of the pillars of Python. As they began to migrate 10 years ago, they still nedovomgrirovali. With Python, this is even richer than Ruby in its time.

    These are issues of dependency management , because when we take a new machine and say: "Python install these dependencies here." With a 90% chance, it will explode with the error "I can't collect something there."

    These are practical applications, of course: “Python and Tensorflow”, “Python and database work”, “Phyton and work with Docker, Kubernetes”, “Python and deploy”, “Python and mobile development”.

    Some language specific things. For example, “Future Python” or “What to use on the backend in 2018: Python or JavaScript?” Finally, such flame-generating topics as, for example, “Python for Web using a hot cake like WebAssembly”.

    All this we will try to reflect in the program. I certainly do not promise a miracle. But you remember about the documentation . Look at it right now, and if you have something to say, say it. Every day we review these comments, clean out, and if we find something interesting, we write out.

    Oleg: With the themes of the program is clear. Any novelties, news, trends, where does the Phyton go? Where does the ecosystem go? What happens to her?

    Grigory : The topics are very interesting. I have already spoken about Machine Learning, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence - this is where the whole HYIP is now. But this is an applied topic. The language itself also changes very much.

    The years 2017-2018 were the years of typing.

    In those languages ​​that have been dynamic for decades: JavaScript, PHP, Python, types suddenly arrived. This is a completely new approach. It is called Gradual Typing. He reconciled two camps: dynamic and static programming languages. Now that developers write in Python, JavaScript, or PHP, they can specify types, but not everywhere, but of their choice. This thing appeared quite a long time ago in the version of python 3.2, but was actively used in version 3.5 (mechanics appeared there for this). Version 3.6, 3.7 are currently relevant. This thing is new. There are a bunch of utilities for typing to work. In PyCharm, the lead IDE / editor, we made our own implementation of type support, so that everything was fast. Recently, Facebook has made a new mega fast utility for working with types, called Pyre. This is new, and the developers do not understand how to use these things. The whole Internet is buzzing that Phyton, Tyre, Pyre - how to cook it all up to make a delicious cocktail. By the way, Andrei Vlasov from PyCharm is also a member of ourProgram Committee and will help us choose topics.

    What else is interesting in 2018? New web ...

    Oleg : New web?

    Gregory: Yes, new web. We now have WebAssembly in all browsers. This means that web pages now do not have to be written entirely in JavaScript, but you can write logic, for example, in C. Everyone is trying to understand that it may be worthwhile to throw out JavaScript from full-stack development, and to do python and backend and frontend What are the backends now? It should be something like an application or a small API, all these web 3.0, one-page applications, progressive web app - that's what Google is heating up for. Developers are experimenting with this and trying to use it all. They are trying to figure out whether it will save them time and allow them to solve more complex tasks, better solve problems, write supported code.

    What I still wanted to sharpen attention, these are chips. Guido - the main development language of Python. Prior to that, for many years he was rather conservative. He said that we would keep a simple, clean core of the language, and this is the basic idea. But in recent years, I cannot say that he relaxed, after all, he is already in his seventh decade, but apparently he has completely learned and now add completely new things to Python. For example, a week ago they confirmed that in the next versions a new “: =” operator will be added directly from Pascal. Freshly, which will allow you to assign an identifier and check it with one command. The language develops unexpectedly, new features are added: types, new syntax, we have the Web, a mega hot topic Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence. All this in 2018 in a few months we will discuss live.

    Oleg: Tell me, please, who do you see as your speakers?

    Grigory : We see as speakers first of all those for whom it makes sense to ask questions. This is a person with a lot of experience who can answer from his practical experience: “I have been using types in Python for the last few years, and this is what I can tell you about your question and new Pyre.”

    This is a speaker from some large company . For example, a speaker from Yandex, who in Python does load testing sites. And all at once: "Well, in Yandex they know how to do load testing of sites." Therefore, everyone with his questions came running to him, surrounded him, poured coffee in and began to inquire.

    The third is a speaker with some unique experience.. He did the thing that no one before him did. He came, told about it, and they immediately asked him: “Listen, you have been doing this for a whole year, and no one else has done it. I want to use it this way. Tell me what and how. ”

    Valentin : I think that we will have the opportunity to give access to the topics of those who are engaged in the development of the language. This is called Python Core Developers.

    Oleg : Russian-speaking or are you planning to translate someone?

    Valentine: One of the Russian-speaking Python Core Developers is in our program committee, this is Andrei Svetlov. He was our speaker at the 2016 conference. His report caused a lot of questions from the audience. People were happy to talk with him. This year, naturally, we will see him at the conference, whether I don’t know in the role of a speaker or not. But to meet him in any case will be an opportunity, even if he will not make a report. There are Russian-speaking Core Developers, there are foreign. We think that with the help of Andrei we will get to them and we will call some of them in order to be told “from under the hood” of the language how and what is happening there, what mechanisms of development.

    Grigory : Now we communicate with foreign speakers and choose.

    Oleg: Good. Suppose I am a speaker and I want to try to speak. What should I do?

    Grigory : This is a very good question. We have a site with a very simple name conf.python.ru. The site has a large “ submit report ” button . You press the button, you are greeted by a small form with several fields. Do you write briefly? what can you tell and did you tell anything before. Photos, videos of previous reports - it will be very cool, but it is not necessary. After you submit a report, he gets into Oleg's magical admin system, where all reports are seen by the Program Committee. He can discuss them, compare, make an offer to the speaker, request slides, run a report and other operations that simply warm the soul of the organizer.

    Oleg: And if I have never spoken, for the first time I do it, will you help me make a good report?

    Grigory : There is a subtle point here. How does the human brain work? I never played the guitar. Give me a guitar and I will try. If a person has never delivered a report to an audience, there will be problems. But there are exceptions.

    If a very interesting topic, and the person really wants to speak with her, I, like the introvert of a sociopath, have a set of crutches and a mechanic who will make it possible for almost a month to make any person a speaker.

    This will take 20 minutes a day. If the topic is really interesting, and you are ready to put in a little effort, not just to indicate your desire, but really every day, with the exception of weekends, spend 20 minutes on certain trainings, which I will show, then under my leadership there will be a cool performance in a month. We have this option.

    Valentine: Returning to the topic of the mitap, I would like to note that for those who want to try out the speeches for the first time, we urge you to do small presentations at the mitap for about twenty minutes. The report at the conference 40 minutes to more fully cover the topic. At the meetings you can make a relatively small report. We are glad to see everyone who is not afraid to speak to our audience. Using the technique of Grigory Petrov, you can prepare for both the meeting and the conference.

    Oleg : How many reports are we accepting?

    Grigory : We  accept applications until September 7, we still have a month. Of course, if in the beginning of September it turns out that the coolest report has a span with deadlines, then write - we will think of something.

    Oleg: When the decision is made and the program is fixed? When does the schedule appear?

    Grigory : At the end of September a month before the beginning of the conference. The speaker will have this month to prepare their slides.

    Oleg : When will the first speakers appear on the site? I want to see before you buy.

    Grigory : They are already here .

    Oleg : Moscow Python Conf ++ will be held October 22-23 in Moscow. Go to the site,
    book tickets . As usual, our price is slowly increasing. Now it is minimal or close to that. For non-Muscovites, we have already prepared promotional codes for the flight.and after a while we will offer to book a hotel where we will try to knock out huge discounts so that everything is comfortable. Plan your participation. We invite you. The Moscow Python community promises to ignite. It'll be cool.

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