DjangoCon Europe 2016 - The Art of Computer Programming

Speaker: Erika Heidi (twitter) php developer and author of the Vagrant Cookbook, is a technical writer for digitalocean. She wanted to be an artist, rocked programming classes and dropped out due to math.

Art and Software Engineering

Software wasn't taken seriously in the beginning, because it looked more like art and magic, and not like engineering. Art is expression of creativity, to be experienced by others, and it doesn't need to be beautiful or good.

Software languages are like Lego, frameworks are like Lego Sets, and Programming is just art on top of logic.

The Path of Learning and Creating

  1. Love and Curiosity: this is our starting point.
  2. Learn your tools: Brushes, Computers, set-up processes.
  3. Practice. Early, often.
  4. Learn the concepts: Patterns of all kinds.
  5. Practice.
  6. Share: sharing creates connection, connection creates communit


Community drives adoption (Django Girls invite people, the php7 process involved the community heavily). Community also drives progress, and makes people leave their bubbles and learn new things.

There are no great open source projects without a community.

And you profit from joining a community, too: You will recieve support, knowledge, feedback, drive, motivation, and lots of fun.

Help a community

Create a user group if there isn't one. Help your community with translations! Having English as a native language is a privilege, and helping people who aren't fluent in English is really important.

"Don't think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it's good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art." - Andy Warhol