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Would you go to a Zope conference?

April 11, 2008

OK, I know, I know. I’m the one complaining that there are so many conferences and sprints to go to that you hardly have time to do any actual work. So I guess I’m not the right guy to suggest this, really. But still…

Should there be a Zope conference? Not enough Zope people go to the Python conferences. And the Plone conferences are of course about Plone. Should we have a conference focusing on Zope? A conference just about how to use the Component Architecture, why Grok is The Coolest Thing Ever, how Repoze will change the world, and a sprint following it to make all this happen? Initial pokings tell me that people in generally think it’s a good idea.

However, I’m not sure *I* think it is a good idea.πŸ™‚ Not only is it Yet Another Conference/Sprint to go to and not work, it also means that Zope gets it’s own conference and that Zope people do not go to the Python conferences, and that again means we isolate us from the Python Community. So it would probably be better if more Zopistas went to PyCon. But they don’t, and the question is why. Another option is to have a dedicated Zope track on the Python conferences. But then we need to make completely sure we can fill up all the slots with talks, and we need dedicated people to select the talks that get held. It basically becomes a conference within the conference, and I don’t know if the PyCon people would like that. EuroPython is smaller, so if we can increase the attendance of EuroPython with 50-100 people by also having a Zope track that would probably be more interesting.

So, I made a survey with SurveyMonkey. If you use Zope (2 or 3) or Plone, or Silva or Grok or anythong else built on Zope 3 technology, please answer the survey. There is only eight questions, it will only take you a minute!

From → plone, python, zope

8 Comments
  1. Martijn Faassen permalink

    Historically, EuroPython started out as the European Python and Zope conference, and Zope likely *did* make EuroPython bigger by 50 to 100 people in the early years. We also had a Zope track there for years. A few years ago it was decided to turn this into a web framework track, as other web frameworks had come of age.

    The best Zope conferences I’ve been to in the last few years are actually the yearly DZUG conferences. They’re partially in German, but I’ve had a great time there. Highly recommended. Perhaps the DZUG people will want to attract a more international audience as well, instead of just international speakers (which they already do).

  2. And in 2007 they dropped the tracks altogether.πŸ™‚ I wan’t at the earlier ones, so I don’t know if there were more or less Zope people in 2007, but it didn’t seem to be very many to me.

    Early survey results indicate that Zope peoples willingness to go to EuroPython is almost exclusively down to there being a Zope track. which I interpret at being a lot of Zope talks.

    I forgot to ask where people come from in the Survey, but since loads of people went to Naples, and few went to PyCon because it cost to much, I’m guessing the answers are mostly european. Either getting Zope back into EuroPython (which I suspect is too late for this year) or a small barcampish Zope conference would probably be a good idea.

  3. Paul Everitt permalink

    I was the one that suggested replacing a Zope-only track with a general web track. I felt as you mentioned: Zope’s goals now require being less of an island. Both to get good ideas out and good ideas in, and to convince the non-believers. :^)

    Django could probably do its own conference or track, because it doesn’t carry the perception of being its own world. Once Zope sheds that perception, it might be safer to have a Zope track/conference, without the downside of “own island”.

  4. At the same time, because Django doesn’t have that perception, they don’t want their own conference, because Django people go to PyCon anyway.πŸ™‚

    It’s a bit of Catch 22, I think.

  5. Martijn Faassen permalink

    Zope was actually very well represented still at EuroPython 2007; much better than say, Django, Pylons or TurboGears, at least in my experience. We had quite a range of Zope-related talks as well. It could be a lot better still though – I think especially the Plone conferences pulled a lot of people away from EuroPython.

    I suspect that Zope is currently bigger, or at least better organized, in Europe, where Django is bigger in the US.

  6. Maybe it’s a good idea to look at OOPSLA, where people like Martin Fowler and the remaining three members of the Gang Of Four hang out.

    Zope is a bit of a minicommunity at times, there is no J2EE conference, or Rails conference, but communities like ours are held up by Birds-Of-Feather gatherings..

    I would, that said, want to attend a Zope Conference, and in fact Alan Runyan has said to me at least once or twice that Plone Conferences, at least up until Seattle 2006, were Zope Conferences in disguise.

    Perhaps there IS a demand not being met. I’d love to have a great chance to be pretty confident I could sit down at a sprint with the Jython Zope folks and talk about CLR/.NET and PyPy, which are my goals. Sun, esp the Duby author, is really interested in my ideas, so there must be at least some distant connection. Sun wants JVM to be seen as a ‘dynlang platform’ like CLR, and they may have some compelling arguments, though I think both fall a bit short for what I’d like to see.

  7. Just to note, one reason I think it would be great for Zope folks to OOPSLA, is because it’s where innovative OO ideas flourish. Zope, bobo, the idea of ‘object publishing’, is very innovative. It makes OO concepts much easier to apply, and people working other languages, environments, etc.. might benefit a great deal from experiencing our community.

  8. That is an interesting take on the question, indeed. Having a group of Zopistas going there might be a good idea to get inspiration and feedback.

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