4 & 5 October 2012
Cape Town, South Africa
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News about PyConZa

Top-Notch Speakers Confirmed for SA’s First Ever PyCon Conference

As we all know, speakers can make or break a conference – particularly when it comes to an audience of highly intelligent coders – so organisers of the upcoming PyConZA have made sure to select a handful of industry heavyweights to keep guests both entertained and engaged. With an impressive lineup that includes Alex Gaynor, Armin Ronacher, Armin Rigo, Maciej Fijałkowski, Laurens Van Houtven and Larry Hastings among others, the audience will be challenged to think differently on a wide range of topics, as well as inspired to continue on their current path of innovation.

“We are honoured to have such a high-profile and influential group of speakers to be attending this event, which is a first for SA on many levels,” says Gustav Praekelt, founder of the Praekelt Foundation (the event’s primary and founding sponsor). “Our speakers all have very strong and distinct personalities, and we feel that their individual experiences and visions are very much in line with the pioneering spirit of PyConZA.”

Alex Gaynor is a software engineer at Rdio in San Francisco, California, where he works to “make music awesome.” He's also a core developer of Django, PyPy, and CPython and serves as a director of the Django Software Foundation. Armin Ronacher is the world renowned creator of Flask, a lightweight web application written in Python, which Ronacher has explained: “It came out of an April Fool's joke but proved popular enough to make into a serious application in its own right." Laurens Van Houtven is a Twisted hacker and ‘core committer’, and the PSF member in charge of the Python IRC channels on Freenode. Armin Rigo is the author of Psyco, the first just-in-time compiler for Python. He is one of the founders and lead developers of the PyPy project that began in 2003. Larry Hastings has been a professional software developer for 20 years and a “Pythonista since the late '90s.”

Last but not least, Maciej Fijałkowski is a leading PyPy developer and recently wrote the Hippy PHP interpreter.

The unique event has already drawn a diverse and tech-savvy audience – primarily developers/coders who use the Python programming language – but guests with an interest in the exploding world of software and web-based innovation will be sure to find value as well. PyConZA, which is already sold out, has been modeled on the popular PyCons that take place annually around the world, and will provide a rare opportunity for local Python users to connect with each other and share their ideas and experiences. In addition, on the weekend following the conference, ‘coding sprints’ (mini-hackathons) will be held at Google’s Umbono offices in Woodstock, Cape Town. This is open to anyone who would like to hack on Python projects, and there is still plenty of space available.

The conference will be held in Cape Town from October 4 – 5 2012, at the scenic Pavilion Clock Tower in the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront. In addition to the Praekelt Foundation, sponsors include Google, Amazon, Thoughtworks, Basho, PSF, St James Software, Clickatell, Information Logistics and Unomena.

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