April 7, 2008

One-Day Class Topics

Since the first Introduction to Python class seemed to go quite well I am thinking about expanding the offerings by slotting in one-day introductory classes on Python-related topics.

From PyCon I know there is a lot of interest in both Twisted and Django. But I wonder how to contact the people who want to learn these technologies. Are they already members of the Python community (to whom this blog is primarily addressed most of the time), or do I need to generate some new marketing channel to reach them?

What other Python technologies do people need a fast introduction to?


Doug Napoleone said...

Our local python users group is looking for intro classes. This was one of the things I wanted to talk to Jeff Rush about, but never had time. My hope is that I will have time this fall to put together a proposal for the PSF about funding tutorials at local user groups. These would be open to the public and mostly funded with PSF funds (nominal, minimal fee). Not everyone can make it to PyCon, but many user groups would benefit from tutorials.

This would not be the normal user group tutorial idea where you have a 2 hour session in the evening. This would be more of a 4 hour weekend session. More like a mini-PyCon, but just a single tutorial. I would like to see a bank of tutorial materials created with a number of instructors per tutorial all over the world. In time these reserves could be tapped for regional conferences (Python or otherwise).

Initially these would be for places where existing user groups exist, but in the future these could be seed events to kick start groups in cities which do not already have an organized python presence.

The incentive for instructors would be the leads into local corporate environments where there is interest in formal python training, but little manager exposure to such. It is a no brainer for a manager to have a person take a corse on the weekend sponsored by a local user group and the PSF. Once the value is shown, it is easy to teach at the company, or form a more formal class across businesses.

Those who are interested in learning, not for corporate/work reasons benefit from the subsidized classes, and get a level of learning they could not otherwise afford.

The PSF gains greatly as this promotes understanding of python, not just buzzword exposure. It does this via a grass roots approach, and by building the community. (Verses blind corporate buzzword adoption or certified corporate training programs ALA Sun/MS)

This model has worked fantastically well for the Boston PHP group, where they are overturning Java at an alarming rate. With python's broader use and appeal, we should be following this example.

Christopher Armstrong said...

I'm sure that We the Twisted Community would be happy to advertise your services on our web site(s), even in a persistent manner.

Steve said...

@Doug: These are great ideas, and ones which I will be happy to see the Foundation consider when you get your proposal together. I was primarily looking for one-day subjects to tag at the end of our three-day public classes, though. I'm afraid I can only give up a limited number of (full) weekends to PSF activities. I'd also be happy to help train speaker should the need arise.

@Christopher: That's very generous of you. I'll be sure to let you know when the one-day Introduction to Twisted is ready!

Anonymous said...

I think adding a menu of a few 2-4 hour tutorials after your primary tutorial would be a great way to add focused learning on either introduction or in-depth topics.

-Deployment Survey and concerns.
-Profiling a Python Application
-Unit Testing
-Patching Python and Library issues (sourcing, maintaining)
-How to get the most out of your PSF sponsorship
-Python based automated build and development support systems (from Buildout to TRAC and beyond)

- DeanG