PyCon 2008: the sprints

The sprint attendance this year was amazing! We had around the same number of people sprinting as we did at PyCon 2003 (which was the first PyCon); 250 people! The sprinters on the core made up just under 30 people on the first day and tapered off from there as time went on. It was nice to have so many new faces show up and participate.

Playing the role of sprint coach led to me creating an issue for everything that needs to be done for 2.6 in terms of backporting from 3.0. I think I filed over 40 bugs on that topic. But through the sprint and continual work since then that number is down to around 30.

Four people also got commit privileges this year. That was helpful to speed up development as those developers no longer were bottlenecked as much by waiting for core developers to check in their code.

A couple of big events happened at the sprints this year. One is that the release schedule for 2.6 and 3.0 was set. As stated by PEP 361, we should hit beta by early June, release candidate in August, and final release in September. For me personally that means I have until June to get the stdlib SIG to make decisions on stdlib reorganization (set a deadline of April 15th for suggestions of modules to remove). I also have until June to get my import stuff in.

Another one is that we now have a Bazaar mirror up of the trunk, 2.5, and 3.0. Currently, though, you can't build from the checkout since Python/sysmodule.c expects to be run from a svn checkout. Also, please realize this is just a test to see if various core developers like the idea of a distributed VCS. Please do not start pushing for some other VCS! If the idea of a distributed VCS becomes popular enough then we can start considering Mercurial, etc. But until then we are just going with what people were willing to set up at PyCon, and that was Bazaar.

Those two things are the big announcements. Everything else is various work on 2.6 and 3.0. As always the sprints were fun but exhausting.