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How I Became a Speaker

Efe Öge at PyConDe 2022

It has been 3 years since to attend a face-to-face conference since PyConWeb 2019.

In PyConWeb 2019, I’ve decided to attend the next conference as a speaker. Why? I see that speakers don’t have to be a Python core contributor or bad-ass developer. People have a lot of talks like sharing experiences about a problem they encountered and solved or providing perspectives about infrastructures or frameworks.

Since the pandemic is getting over, I thought that it is the right time for this experience.

About what?

As far as I see, either a thing you don’t know well but are curious about or a task you do multiple times and got experienced with are possible good items to start with.

In Hipo, Interns and part-time developers are promising candidates for the core team. As the core team, We put a lot of effort into mentoring them. Therefore, They make their path to the core team easier and more solid. Interns work on real-world projects from their 2nd or 3rd week. Part-time developers also take responsibility for bug fixes, tests, or improvements.

Nevertheless, Most of the Hipo interns already have solid knowledge about computer science basics like complexities of algorithms, object-oriented programming, etc. or even advanced topics like multi-threading programming or distributed systems. However, They weren’t interested much in backend development in bachelor’s degree.

Since we have a lot of newcomers, It means some repetitive jobs for the seniors. The request-response cycle, HTTP principles, the separation between frontend and backend and application/network layers would be myths for newcomers. This knowledge is not rocket science but is required to build a web application. Brain-storming these topics take my first weeks with each newcomer. Therefore, I’ve thought that this is a task I do multiple times and got experience with.

In the end, It comes to the “All about HTTP and Files” talk.


In Hipo, We also have a good tradition which is Hipotalks. Each week randomly picked and announced one person (used to be 3 people!) makes a talk every Thursday. You may think it is like lightning talk. It can be technical or not! I’ve made talks about running, Nasreddin Hodja, making beer at home and tweet classification and more up to now. Therefore, I’ve already had the practice of presenting.

Local community gatherings are great for pitching a new presentation. So, I’ve thought that I can present this in Python Istanbul weekly meetup in my native language. Then, I made the “Serving files through HTTP” presentation. It was super nice. Why?

Then, I applied to the PyCon DE & PyConData 2022 call for proposal. Preparing CFP is also another task. But, I was a member of the CFP selection department in the PyCon Turkey 2020. Thanks to that, I know what is good to have in the CFP.

Do not forget that you don’t need to finalize your talk while you are applying to the CFP. It is enough to have the schema in your head.

Then, I got the approval email from PyConDE. The acceptance rate was about 24%.

Doom Days

The opening talk in the Kuppelsaal was magnificent.

The big conference room, the enthusiastic audience who are not attending any event for 2-3 years. After a couple of minutes, I’ve found out that my talk will be in the same conference room! It makes me even more excited. Then, I spend my spare time rehearsing again and again.

Also, Familiar faces were at the conference.

So, It would be nice if you have somebody with you at the conference. It makes you calm.


Big relief.

Traveling the world by attending conferences is a great opportunity. I’ve traveled to Basel, Munich, Paris, Bratislava, Vienna, and Berlin this way. So, I’m eager to push myself to submit more CFPs on areas I don’t know deeply but curious about.

Making a speech should be a bucket list item of all developers. To be honest, It might not be fun at all. You might have pain in the stomach or regret for appeal on the morning of the presentation day. However, Life is vivid when we push our boundaries and see that these weren’t hard glass limits.

It’s worth giving it a try.