Thursday, June 7, 2007

About This Past DFW Pythoneers 4th Sat Meeting

Although it was Memorial Day weekend, the DFW Pythoneers held their Saturday meeting at the Nerdbooks store as usual. For those who don't know, we meet at the store on the 2nd and 4th Saturday of every month, from 2pm until 5pm. We have a projector and draw around 7-14 attendees currently. At this meeting we had 8 people as I recall.

This meeting was a rapid fire sequence of mini-talks, by various people. As a result of the work on the Forrester survey, I had some simple, clearly documented source examples, provided by Martin Thomas (local), Mario Ruggier (not local) and myself. They can be found in our club subversion repository.

One of them is a mashup by Martin of placing temperature readings collected from one site using REST, onto a DFW Google map.

Another is HTML page generation using Twisted Nevow/STAN, along with an RSS feed parser module to embed a list of the N most recent news stories.

And one is a simple but powerful presentation and form validation using the Gizmo(QP) framework, which does the validation both in the server and in the browser using JavaScript. No big deal, until you realize the JavaScript in the browser is generated from the Python source, and the whole source fits on a couple of screens.

I had also had recent opportunity to toss together a simple RSS client (15-lines or so) that pulled down a collection of photos from an Apple site, for the non-Mac user and did a walk-thru of the source.

John Zurawski had at the previous meeting presented on his entry into the 48-hour PyGame challenge but since most of the attendees at this meeting had missed this, he walked through his source for us again.

And since I had had to compute some statistics for the Forrester survey of Python mail traffic, I walked thru my first use of the really cool BeautifulSoup module, for screenscaping the Mailman interface to locate and download the message archives.

And then we wrapped up with a quick examination of Raymond Hettinger's NamedTuples recipe from the Python Cookbook site. It had recently floated by on Planet Python and I just thought its implementation was neat.

We may have covered other topics that I've forgotten, but that was the gist of it.

Our 2nd Saturday meeting of June is this weekend, and we're looking for presentation ideas. There has been a request for a repeat of Martin's TuxDroid (programmable with Python) demo by those who missed the first one, and a test of having two TuxDroids within RF range. Brad has offered to cover the power of the Python logging module, and I can skim how you can write a filesystem in Python using the FUSE (filesystem in userspace) module. More topics are welcome, as these tend to be short.

Jeff Rush
DFW Pythoneers

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