[SciPy-user] ANN: SciPy 2006 Conference

Travis N. Vaught travis at enthought.com
Wed Apr 12 12:33:42 CDT 2006

Perry Greenfield wrote:
> Hi Travis,
> Who is helping organize this year's conference besides you. I'm  
> thinking I may want to help, particularly in involving the  
> astronomical community more. The next month isn't that good for me  
> but I'd like to be involved if that is of interest to you (i.e., with  
> the program and such). If you are interested, what is your schedule  
> of activities for planning the conference?
> Thanks, Perry
Hey Perry (and anyone else interested in helping),

I'm open to any help we can get to organize the conference (thus the 
cross-post to scipy-dev)--thanks for the willingness to pitch in.  It's 
probably useful to give a breakdown of all the tasks (at least the one's 
I can think of right now):

Abstracts Review/Speaker Recruitment & Acceptance
This has traditionally been under the purview of the co-sponsors, 
represented by me, Eric Jones, Michael Aivazis and Michel Sanner.  If 
anyone would like to participate, let us know and we'll organize a 
committee to do this with more rigor.  I think there's a lot of 
potential in this area that, frankly, has gone untapped.

Organize Auxiliary Sessions
Several things to do here, particularly in accommodating the various 
sub-communities like astronomy, biology, etc.  This may be a good area 
for you to pitch in, Perry.:
- Organize Sprint projects
- Organize Tutorials
- Initiate and moderate conversation about BOF interests and organize 
BOF meeting times.

Marketing the Conference
We have largely relied on the usual mailing lists to get the word out 
about the conference.  We could definitely have a broader campaign 
here.  I think we could reasonably accommodate 50% more attendees and 
still have a nice collaborative environment.  Some things that come 
immediately to mind are:

- A prominent announcement on the python.org home page & encouraging 
other PSF involvement (sponsorship of a speaker(s), a sprint, student 
- Announce/articles on other sites/blogs.
- Better follow-up reminders for registration.
- Targeting particular folks in various Organizations/Universities/Labs 
to spread the word internally.
- Pitch in on keeping the scipy site updated, graphics, etc.
- Any other ideas?

Sponsorship/Encouragement of Student Participation
There has been some discussion about ways to encourage more students to 
attend the meeting.  Because of our goal of keeping registration costs 
low, we don't have funds to physically bring students to the 
conference.  We could possibly waive student registration fees, or 
recruit organizations to sponsor student attendance.  We could organize 
Sprints/Tutorials/BOFs specifically for this sort of group.  Of course 
there's also the issue of getting the word out and targeting interested 
students.  Any ideas?

Event Planning
The wonderful folks at CalTech handle this superbly.  All planning for 
meals, meeting rooms, A/V, parking, nametags, check-in, etc. are pretty 
much taken care of by them--an amazing thing, really.  So, not much to 
do here (thankfully).

We're interested in any ideas to make this a compelling, productive 
time--I'm sure I'm forgetting/missing some things.

Now, to actually answer your question about the schedule for the 
Conference planning.  Here are some dates:

--Between now and June, we should try to build a schedule of tutorials 
and sprint projects.  We should follow up with threads for this.  I've 
created wiki stubs to hold the results:
June 30,2006: Arbitrary target date for preliminary Sprint & Tutorial 
--manage 'registration' of tutorial and sprint attendees--
July 7, 2006: Presentation Abstracts Due
--week of reviewing abstracts and defining the schedule--
July 14, 2006: Accept/announce presentation schedule
July 14, 2006: Early registration deadline
--Figure out a BOF schedule sometime in August and announce at the 

We're a bit flexible on this, so suggestions are welcome.

Thanks again, Perry.


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