Public speaking week

A few months ago I went to my first Cambridge Python User Group. On this particular occasion the talk was on creating a B compiler which I found fascinating. The evening ended with, as is usual for CamPUG, going to the pub, but also Tibs attempting to cajole everyone in the room into signing up for a talk. Given I still had slides from the Raspberry Pi party in March, I signed up my Final Year Project as a talk topic. And then a few months later, I submitted it as a talk at EMF Camp, hoping it would get accepted but not being entirely sure anyone would turn up.

Completely coincidentally the talks turned out to be in the same week, with the CamPUG one on tuesday last week and EMF on Sunday. To some extent, CamPUG was a good practice run - it convinced me musicians would turn up to my talk at EMF Camp, and more importantly made me realise a lot of stuff was broken and I needed to fix that before demoing it again.

As I expected, CamPUG fired more questions about technical stuff - PyQt, testing style, LaTEX, Lilypond, the intricacies of MusicXML. What I wasn’t sure of but hoped would happen was that there would be a few musicians who’d turn up, whether they were software engineers or not, and happily they did and there were more mixes of “have you solved the page turning problem yet?” and “can I import MIDI?” EMF camp I had a couple of musician turned software engineers come and ask questions. I was quite glad about this for multiple reasons:

  1. I expected it to be super awkward where I’d stand outside for 10 minutes and no one would be even remotely interested in asking questions
  2. I really want the project to be used and abused by more engineers and more importantly, musicians, so it’s good to know people have suggestions and stuff they want to put in and more importantly, want to contribute to improving. I’ve done my best over the last 2 years (oh god it’s been almost that long since this started…) to make the repo developer friendly, which includes talking to myself on github issues rather than making mental notes, so I hope it will eventually get people contributing stuff.

Before during and after both talks my brain tried to convince me everyone who said it was any good was being polite. I hope that’s not the case and it was interesting. Impostor syndrome can do one -_-

EMF camp was filmed (and streamed live) so there’s a video of that here.

It’s been a while since I plugged the git repos on my blog (heh, probably because I haven’t written on my blog in a long time or even had it online…) so here is the app and here is the music parser package.