PyCon UK 2019

I didn't know that!
2019-09-16, 11:30ā€“12:00, Room D

In years of providing technical support to hundreds of Django developers, of all levels of experience, Iā€™ve realised that nearly everyone has some surprising holes in their understanding of the most basic or crucial things. Here are some of them...


Where I work, we all take responsibility for providing technical support to our users, most of whom are Django developers. In the years that I've been in my role I have had literally thousands of interactions with hundreds of Django programmers, from complete beginners to experts (including members of the Django core team).

At first I was surprised, but I soon realised that though many of these users were far more experienced programmers than me, nearly all of them, whatever their level of experience, didn't know something important. Some of these important things have been remarkably basic, others have been alarmingly critical to site safety or reliability. In short, there are holes and gaps in people's understanding and knowledge, and most people have them - whoever they are.

Dealing with large numbers of users allows us to see patterns in the holes; we see certain gaps appear over and over again.

In this talk I will discuss and address some of my favourites. I expect that for most members of the audience most of them will be things that they recognise and understand already, but that there will be one or two that are new or surprising to them - and that the surprising new ones will be evenly distributed amongst the audience (I also expect that everyone will be surprised at the things the other people don't know).

As well as being useful and instructive about Django, I hope this will act as reminder that it's perfectly normal to live with gaps in one's knowledge and understanding - even of the things one is supposed to be expert in.


Is your proposal suitable for beginners? ā€“