Sunday, March 28, 2010

pyTexas 2010 needs volunteers!

Here is a loose set of notes for near term tasks related to pyTexas 2010:

* We need a volunteer promoter for each major Texas city, who will help get the word out to the local user group in that city. I've joined the Meetup mailing lists for DFW, Houston, and Austin, but I don't think people always pay attention to those lists. We need a person who can show up at the user group meetings to plug pyTexas and recruit volunteers.  I haven't heard about user groups in other Texas cities, but it would be great to find contacts in San Antonio, College Station.

* Setup the pyTexas 2010 wiki. This year, I'd like to switch to MoinMoin. The PmWiki of previous years was serviceable enough, but there's nothing wrong with MoinMoin, which is Python-based and I would like to get more experience working with it. I've signed with an account at Webfaction to get this setup. Does anyone want to volunteer to help administer it? We could also use a volunteer to sling some CSS to make it look good.

* We need a volunteer to create pyTexas logo. I've heard a few good ideas: cross-eyed python digesting Texas-shaped lump, or the standard Python logo twisted into a Texas shape. However, any volunteer willing to do the job gets creative license and automatically gets +5 votes.

* Create a flyer and presentation slide to attract students and faculty to the event. I'm planning to draft content for this next weekend, along these lines "Python Programmers Converge Upon Baylor -- This is your chance to learn an excellent programming language! Already know Python? Take our survey so we can make pyTexas fit your brain!"

* Create a survey for potential attendees. I can think of a lot of content but it would be helpful if someone would volunteer to assemble and deploy the survey.

* Recruit speakers. We need a Python 101 for the beginners, and I think a Django tutorial in the afternoon beginner track would probably go over well with college students. For the experienced track, it's wide open; we need to start soliciting for talk proposals. Anyone want to volunteer to coordinate that? Or just volunteer a talk?

* Make contact with the existing Python game development enthusiasts at Bayor. Jeremy mentioned he'll get us the contact info. If there's enough interest, maybe we could add a game development track.

* Write letters about the event to the Baylor faculty members involved in computer science, bioinformatics, library science, and engineering. We should invite them to join, and to encourage students to attend.

* I would like to invite free sponsorships for pyTexas, by offering to give away sponsor swag to attendees. Anyone want to be the sponsor coordinator? I volunteer to have swag mailed to my house for storage until pyTexas, and to host a bag stuffing party.

* After the wiki is set up, the tasks can start getting more solidified. We have a variety of lists to start maintaining, including the list of people needing parking, number of computers needing wifi access, inventory of supplies needed (power strips, gaffer's tape, whiteboard erasers and markers, video cameras).

* We need one or more volunteers to record video, and I would like to follow the same process as PyCon, as explained to my by Carl Karsten. We can use the free DVSwitch app for real time selection between of screen capture and "live action" presenter. (We need about $450 for a Canopus TwinPact 100, which I'll be asking DFW Python members to chip in for). Whether we try to record video in just one room, or both, depends on how much equipment we can afford.

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