Sunday, February 26, 2006 11:34:48 CST
PyCon, Part Two

Saturday was fun: Guido's keynote was technical; Jim Fulton's State of Zope talk cleared a couple things up for me; Chad's Un-Reinventing the Wheel was cool.

I hung out developing in the quiet room for the beginning of the afternoon. I wanted to position bullets well for fonts other than Chalkboard; it turns out 2/3 x-height works well. One problem: there's no get_xheight() call in Font. After trying unsuccessfully to fake it with half the average of height and ascender-height (and some less-obvious secret formulae), I realized I could automatically determine a font's x-height: render a white "x", then scan down from the top for the highest white pixel, and up from the bottom for the lowest. The difference is, by definition, the x-height.

(OK, you have to make sure to not use anti-aliasing, and there's a quirk where some fonts put the lowest pixel of the "x" at the baseline while others put it just above, but all I really want out of this is good-looking bullets.)

Then I went to the re-run of Ian Bicking's "Building Pluggable Software with Eggs," which was deservedly popular. I tossed what sounds in retrospect like a softball question: Is there anyone distributing Python code who shouldn't use Eggs? The answer turns out to be "No."

The Lightning Talks rocked, and were plenary, which is a great idea. I might try to do one on PyGame today.

I missed most of the book party, but did get calories out of it, and bought a book on grid computing. I hit the bar, and drank with the same group from eleven until midnight, and turned in early (all right, the bar closed).