One of the highlights of getting involved in the Python community has been the enthusiasm and sheer joy in the room at gatherings. While I was looking forward to PyOhio, a free conference held in Columbus last week, I did not know what to expect. Would the talks be over my head? How crowded or empty would this small, local conference be?
Of course, it was a wonderful experience from start to finish. Though the 2 hour drive pushed my boundaries (my world has grown smaller as I’ve moved eastward and I primarily travel by bike these days), the time flew by because I carpooled with fellow Cleveland PyLadies members and chatted about Data Science, Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing, and life in general with two wonderful women.
Everyone at the conference itself was welcoming and enthusiastic to connect. We ended up going to lunch with former strangers each day and never needed to worry about the conversation feeling forced; there was so much to discuss from the talks and from our life experiences in such a short time that conversation flowed easily. I got so carried away with socializing, the “hallway track,” and taking personal time in the Quiet Room that I missed a few talks I’d been looking forward to. Fortunately, that wasn’t even slightly problematic!
Each talk was recorded and made available on the PyOhio YouTube channel. They’ve even organized talks into separate playlists for each year of the conference! From the 2018 playlist, I highly recommend the following:
- Natural Language Processing in Python
- Now is Better than Never: What the Zen of Python Can Teach Us About Data Ethics
- A Son, a Father, and a Computer – How I’m Using Tech to Ease the Suffering of my Dying Father
There were several others that were inspiring, informative, and engaging, but I made myself choose my top 3 to keep from listing half of the 41 talks available as of this publication. For a list of all topics from this year, check out the full 2018 schedule from PyOhio’s website. There is also a talks list and tutorials list to more easily browse summaries of each. Check out all of the resources from PyOhio 2018 and come join in on the fun next year!