DIY Conference Planning for the Tech Industry

The first conference of the Asian python programming community was a great success, and I had the privilege of leading a session there.

At the talks, a wide variety of topics were discussed, with a focus on community building. Speakers shared their personal experiences in creating and sustaining communities, and discussed the importance of having a strong foundation for any successful initiative. Additionally, the talks touched on the use of data and artificial intelligence in solving problems in Asia, as well as best practices for day-to-day coding and programming. Finally, the human factor was also addressed, with speakers exploring topics such as burnout and how to avoid it.

Now that you have been made aware of all the relevant details, it would be worthwhile to discuss a few of the main highlights from the said event that could be of use if you are ever planning to host a similar technology conference for your local programming community. These points should be kept in mind in order to ensure a successful and fruitful event.

  1. It’s not necessary to have a great budget or invite thousands of people to have a good party.

    The turnout at the event was quite low, with fewer than 300 attendees, mostly comprised of college students. The session I led on using Pandas for data analysis was even more sparsely attended, with less than 20 participants. This was a great opportunity for me, as it granted me the scope to provide individual assistance to every attendee and to engage in meaningful conversations with all the speakers who sought my expertise.
  2. Finances, Patrons, and Backing:

    The planning of this conference was facilitated by the secure availability of necessary funds. A range of companies and organizations, such as the Python Software Foundation, the Django Software Foundation, and numerous international Python and Django groups, sponsored the event. This enabled the conference to position itself as an attractive source of potential talent, which drew the attention of corporate sponsors including BriteCore and Works. Furthermore, tickets were made available at varying prices for different participants, and all speakers and organizers were obliged to purchase tickets for entry.
  3. Making Arrangements for the Meeting Place, Presentations, and Workshop Attendees:

    When organising an event, it is essential to take into account the type of audience that is expected to attend. Careful consideration should be taken to ensure that a balance is struck between beginner, intermediate and advanced levels of presentations and topics, depending on the knowledge base of those attending. Additionally, it is important to select a location that is suitable for the intended attendees. For example, a university auditorium may be suitable for a student audience, however, it may not be the most suitable choice for a corporate executive group.

    Programming presentations, data talks, community talks, social impact talks, and product pitches are just some of the possible subjects for lectures.
  4. Planned Activities and Time Management:

    Having a pre-planned timetable is essential, but having a contingency plan that allows for some degree of flexibility is even more critical. Unexpected delays, such as late breakfasts, cancelled speakers, or technical issues with electronic equipment, can occur. It is important to be able to make adjustments to ensure your visitors are not inconvenienced. As new developments arise, you must be ready to adapt accordingly.

    At this conference, there was an opportunity to enhance the experience for attendees by clearly indicating the titles of the presentations on the doors of each room. This would have made it easier for people to decide which room to join. To further improve the conference experience, a basic program could be implemented to manage the timetables and provide attendees with real-time updates on the conference activities and subscription notifications.
  5. Garantie of tolerance for those with different backgrounds:

    In order to be eligible for funding from the Python Software Foundation (PSF), it is essential to have a formal Code of Conduct in place. This agreement serves to ensure that all attendees, regardless of their colour, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or philosophical beliefs, are treated with respect and courtesy, and held to the same standards. Even if the conference is not expecting to receive support from the PSF, having a written document like this in place will provide assurance to attendees that it is a safe and welcoming environment for them to express themselves and contribute to the discussion.

I wish you the best of success as you work to organise your city’s next (or first) technology conference.

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