YAPC (Yet Another Perl Conference) has been the Perl conference of choice for over a decade, it is hosted each year on five different continents. YAPC North America is the original YAPC that started it all.
Hundreds of attendees come to hear over 100 talks across three days, but the YAPC's are primarily a social conference, and as such have a very community-driven down to Earth feel that make a YAPC a joy to attend. As with all the best conferences the "hallway track", birds of a feather sessions (BOFs), and the people you meet are the reason most attendees come back year after year.
2012: The Wild Side of Perl
Like many other Perl events the team are running a wide range of activities including the usual conference dinner, Job Fair, Hallway Track, Workshops, Training and will take Sponsorship and have a call for speakers.
However, the organisation committee for this year, led by JT Smith, are doing an industrious job and seeking to lead the way in managing the event so that it will be the best Perl Conference that America has seen and will sow strong seeds for future teams to build upon.
Building on a great success...
The organisers for 2012 have decided on a whole range of improvements and additions to previous years events. these can be easily followed on the regularly updated conference blog, all of their enhancements and initiatives are too numerous to list, but they include:
- Moving YAPC::NA. to a permanent home website;
- Improving the Act software that powers the conference websites for Perl conferences;
- Creating the Future Friend of Perl;
- Holding the Perl: The Next Generation Initiative;
- Changing the Auction to a Raffle;
- Making a comprehensive 'theme' "The Wild Side of Perl"and providing lots of choice of how to work with that theme and expound upon it;
- Encouraging alternative travel, travel by bus, or travel by rail to YAPC::NA;
- Having a Documentary Commercial;
- Having a Zero - Perl Workshop;
- A best-ever job fair"http://yapcna.org/job-fair';
- Having a Facebook Page;
- Having a Twitter Feed;
There are many others such as the Partner Program and initiatives for Sponsors and the varying levels of sponsorship available for the event and the rights and privileges that come with it. This year they hope to make it very easy for many more companies and individuals to become a sponsor. There are several levels of Sponsorship:
- Friend of Perl
- Future Friend of Perl
All of the sponsorship goes towards making a better conference or towards sponsoring a student place as part of the Perl: The Next Generation Initiative.
The Perl: The Next Generation initiative is seeking to encourage a greater uptake of Perl amongst younger, or new, programmers to Perl, the organisers this year are seeking to "not only to provide a great social experience and enhance the careers of existing Perl developers, but to bring the next generation of Perl developers into the community". Perl TNG (as its homage-linked title lets it colloquially be known) has several aspects to it:
- Why you should learn Perl;
- The Zero - Perl Workshop;
- Future Friends of Perl and the Sponsorship Program
- Begineer Track
- Job Fair
- Workforce Development
The Sponsorship Program seeks to bring in more students to Perl by sponsoring their attendance and costs in a manner similar to the Send-A-Newbie initiative that has been run in association with the Enlightened Perl Organisation and the YAPC::EU conference over the last four years.
Like most YAPC events of recent years YAPC::NA::2012 will have a job fair in which sponsors, companies and attendees can attend. Some companies that sponsor will have pride of place booths, and other companies will be allowed to sponsor just a job fair attendance The organisers hope to make this year's job fair relevant to the many different skill levels/experience of Perl developers attending the conference.
Most Perl events are run entirely by volunteers who give up their valuable time to make this a stunning community for us all to enjoy. If you would like to help volunteer for the event then please visit the volunteer page and offer your services. There are plenty of jobs of varying skill level, from zero to expert so don't think that you cannot be used. Jobs include:
- Writing Code
- Designing Websites
- Donor Development
- Student Recruitment
- Speaker Recruitment
And many more...