I organised 7 PyCon as the Conference Chair in Hong Kong since 2015 and continue my contribution for 8th PyCon in the same role with lesser administration work.
When I was sitting in the “PyCons in APAC” session at PyCon APAC 2013 in Tokyo, I was the only participant from a special city without a local PyCon, the sharing from other countries inspires me to establish PyCon Hong Kong in 2015.
Establishing & Developing PyCon Hong Kong
The 1st PyCon HK is a 2-day 3-track conference. Hong Kong airport was an important hub in the region, which brings overseas speakers and visitors joining us. The development sprint is included on day 2 of the conference, but it is a lack of participants working on Python codes in the sprint room. Therefore, English is always the primary language we used for tech conferences in Hong Kong for local expats and overseas visitors.
The founder of Pandas, Wes McKinney is the keynote speaker of The 2nd PyCon HK, let me express a special thanks to Wes visiting and a Hongkonger who is an early contributor of Pandas to assist us. As we heard a request for tech talks in Cantonese (the local primary language) from a few local-born Chinese techies, we added a Chinese track for both Cantonese and Mandarin speakers. The workshop track is new to PyCon HK. The development sprint is still included on day 2 of the conference, few developers were coding for their Python projects but it didn’t attract new contributors, I think some fine tune is still required.
The 3rd PyCon HK is moved to the City University of Hong Kong. It is changed to free admission because of the venue term. The no. of participants is doubled. The Hong Kong finance industry increased to use Python for data science works, and teams from the various global investment banks joined and sponsored the conference.
The 4th PyCon HK is moved back to Cyberport. It’s the 1st conference included in the mass media coverage, PyCon HK, our keynote speaker, and his topic “Breast cancer classification in digital pathology using Python and Deep Learning” is interviewed by the reporter.
Due to the uncertain traffic situation in 2019 Fall, the 5th PyCon HK moved to 2020 Spring which was a virtual conference with a single track for 3 days due to the pandemic starting.
And 6th and 7th PyCon HK were also organised in virtual space with English and Cantonese tracks in 2020 Fall and 2021. Education track is a new trial in PyCon HK 2021 and we invited some educators and students to give sharing.
The next conference and future community development
In 2022, we take a challenge that we will organise the 8th PyCon HK as an in-person conference again even though some gathering restrictions & requirements are still in effect. It will be a single day 2 track conference in October/November, and we look forward to meeting the Pythonists again.
I hope that volunteers of this year will take some leadership roles in future years, I might become an advisor in the future PyCon HK and then I hope to help the development of the community and conference, and hereby are some items (but not limited to) I would like to develop for the Python community:
- Development Sprint: Look for new contributors and students to experience how to make contributions to Python projects.
- Solid Community: Expanding the size of volunteers in the community who will be the next team leaders. Recruiting the PSF members. Continuous community development for Python in Hong Kong and Hongkongers around the world.