Monday, September 3, 2007


Last week I had the pleasure to attend, for the first time, Brasil's largest meeting of Python users: PyconBrasil[03]. My impression of the community couldn't be better, Everyone was very nice and open, and talks were awesome. I will make specific posts about the talks that impressed me most, which is not to say that talks I don't mention were not great as well, but I really can't make any relevant comments on talks regarding business solutions, e-government, etc. If you are interested in those topics, I recommend watching the videos of the talks on google video (most of them are in portuguese).

The first thing that impressed me positively, was the number of science-related talks. They were very high level. My own talk was only mildly scientific, since I had planned the talk to preach about the importance of expanding the Python academic community. It turns out that the existing community is already highly sensitive to the scientific possibilities of Python. In the event, I met many full time scientists among the "Pythonistas". It was also nice to notice that a large number of members of the community were involved with science as well. A good example is Fabiano Weimar, one of the exponents of the Brazilian Python scene, who is working towards his doctoral degree, working with speech recognition using Hidden Markov Models, If I understood it correctly. It will be nice to see a good python implementation of HMM in Python, though I am not sure if that is in his plans. The funny thing is, that I believed that the last chapter of my book, about stochastic methods, would find almost no echo on the Python community, due to its dryer scientific language and focus. Apparently I was wrong, which is great!.

Even though PyconBrasil is on its third iteration, the Brasilian Python association, a non-profit, organized to promote Python in Brasil, was celebrating only three months of existence, I met their staff and found them very nice and open, I wish them all the success they deserve!

I want to close this post with big thanks to the Python community as a whole for receiving me and my book so well, and letting them know that I will keep doing everything in my reach to help the community grow and be known in the scientific community.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It was really nice to meet you Flavio. The conference was great! Thanks for quote me on your post.

Regard my work, I'm developing some research on HMM for ASR, but the core software still is in C language (HTK). I'm thinking about write a wrapper over HTK, but it's license is something that always scare me... a bit. Another small detail is I'm only doing the Master in Computer Science. I want to do a doctor degree too... but it will take some time.

Best Regards and... I think that I will buy one copy of your book too. It looks great :-)