The winter edition of Python Pune meetup was held on December 6, 2014 at Red Hat, Pune. Our intention was to take a first step in bringing together all the the Pythoners across the city and build a strong python community in Pune. The last meetup was held way back in April, 2014 and we thought of bringing the series back to life. The main driving factor behind this was Chandan Kumar who came up with the idea and I along with some other folks supported him and took it forward. The response on the meetup page was way beyond our expectations as people were responding to RSVP even till the last day. We had a full house at the meetup and surprisingly most of the people were on time except one or two who walked in a little late. We had kept a buffer time of 15 minutes for installations/setup but fortunately everyone had their machines tuned before turning up for the session. The crowd was a mixed blend of professionals and students but less number of females as usual. I still wonder why don’t women turn up at events. By 10:15 a.m, we were all set to begin and I kicked off the event with a brief introduction to Python as a programming language and the agenda for the day. On interacting with the attendees, it was good to know that most of them were new to python and had no prior experience which made us believe and gear up with a positive vibe ‘the day shall be good’. Later Chandan Kumar took over and proceeded with the session.
The session began with some basic concepts about a programming language and it all began with a print “hello World!” where it is nearly important to greet the new world you are about to enter. The agenda was to cover the basics of Python including variables, data types,operators, looping, data structures, functions, modules and file handling. We had planned for the first break of the day to be at 11:45 a.m and we were able to generate interest in the participants by then. Not to forget, our team of volunteers was successfully able to help those who were with a windows machine and 100% attendees were doing a hands on session. The workshop was well organised with a DIY(Do it Yourself) program after every each concept being taught. In order to motivate people, there were stickers for the one who did it first.
The lunch break was planned at 1:15 pm, the attendees interacted well while having lunch. With a quick round of questions to the participants, we made sure that they were not sleepy post lunch. Topics including file handling, modules were to be covered post lunch which are considered a bit complex in the view of a beginner. As volunteers, while we were helping the participants resolve their queries we noticed that a lot of participants were not able to execute their programs because of indentation errors. We made sure that Chandan would put a bit stress on the indentation part and show a demo as well. In the end, the session was a little fast paced as we wanted to wrap up the meetup by 4:00 pm as per the agenda and not let people complain about it. The meetup was a successful event and we are planning for a Chapter 2 as well where we will be covering some advanced topics. It was good to see that a good number of people entered the Python community that day and were no more a beginner 😉 .