thursday lightning talks

Tags: pycon, python

(One of my summaries of a talk at the 2017 conference).

(Note: if you have a name correction, mail me… Lightning talks go very fast)

Note two: look at the mp3 player for very small kids talk below. That one was great.

Work of a data analyst - Sofia Kosoran

She talked yesterday about the difference between academia and industry.

She now told an experience she had at her job. She didn’t need deep learning or other hard stuff. Just a few minutes with pandas and taking the max meant that she became famous in her company :-)

A linux firewall framework - Maximilian Wilhelm

Alff: a linux firewall framework. For instance for a distributed linux firewall, based on a central point of truth/configuration. It knows about network topology, services and security classes. You can extend it with python plugins.

If you don’t know iptables: don’t use this tool.


Introducing BiCDaS - Nils Hachmeister

BiCDaS: Bielefeld center for data science. It is a cross-section of different parts of the university, it is an initiative coming out of a round table. So: interdiciplinary. The participants come from all over the university: biology, sociology, law, technical, IT, etc.

Something they aim at: data science oriented labs. And there’ll probably a master degree program.

Exeptions: the missing how to - Malte Plath

Python exception handling: you can build your own. He likes to do that and he categorizes them by caus*. Or by resolution: “can the application recover?”, “can the user fix something?”.

Defining your own exceptions is good for handling known or anticipated problems.

  • Raise a custom exception that you expect the user can handle and catch it later on and notify the user.

  • If you don’t expect recovery, just let the exception bubble to the top.

Three things to google for more background:

  • “error handling in the real world” (youtube)

  • “solution oriented error handling europython 2014” (youtube)

  • “designing error-handling for maximum usability in your application” (article)

Salt and the kitchen (devops)

Infrastructure as code? So test it! For that he uses “kitchen”, it comes from the chef universe. It prepares VMs and you can run your tests on them.


There are kitchen provisioners for ansible, chef, puppet, salt stack, etc.

Drivers are vagrant (virtualbox/vmware), ec2, digitalocean, docker, etc.

The config is all in YAML.

testinfra is used to enable tests written in python (py.test).

An mp3 player for very small kids - Eberhard Hansis

He has a kid of 3 years old that loves listening to music. Loaning your smartphone isn’t always handy. So he build a mp3 player himself.

A box with a raspberry pi in it and an nfc reader. By placing a poker coin with an nfc tag on top, a specific song is played. He even has a web interface to reconfigure the nfc-to-song mapping.

See, including a shopping list with the components he used to build it.


Batou - Christian Theune

batou is something like ansible, salt stack, etc…. Why another one? Well, it was started about the same time as ansible :-)

He likes opinionated software. He wants single-command stuff for this. There’s a ./batou binary inside your project so there’s no bootstrapping and no globally installed tools.

It is declarative.

At some point you need to actually do stuff. This is imperative. He uses “components” for this with a .verify() and an .update() method.

GDPR, data privacy - Vikas Mishra

GDPR? A EU general data protection regulation. It is designed to harmonize data privacy laws across Europe and should protect all EU citizens’ personal data.

Personal data? Name, address and unique identifying numbers (social security number and so), for instance.

There are three key terms

  • Customer

  • Processor: where the data is stored/handled/processed.

  • Controller: who the customer entrusts the data to.

There are some rights:

  • Right to be forgotten/erased.

  • Access and rectification.

  • Portability: you should be able to see (and export) the data someone has about you.

He’s doing research on “aircloak”: anonymized user data analytics. It tries to provide real-time database anonymization for GDPR compliance.

Photo explanation: picture from our recent cycling holiday (NL+DE). Our bikes while crossing a river. logo

About me

My name is Reinout van Rees and I work a lot with Python (programming language) and Django (website framework). I live in The Netherlands and I'm happily married to Annie van Rees-Kooiman.

Weblog feeds

Most of my website content is in my weblog. You can keep up to date by subscribing to the automatic feeds (for instance with Google reader):