Did a version of the PyCon talk on profiling at HackLab's weekly Python Newbies night this evening. This was a bit of a "kitchen sink" presentation; every thought I had on the topic thrown into a presentation to see what stuck. As a result it was around an hour long (pushing to get it done that fast). The big TODOs:
- need to have a few slides at the beginning giving a simple, graphical "what is profiling" introduction (to replace the current midway "how does profiling work" section)
- need to watch out for jargon, one of the new programmers found sections hard to follow due to some of the CS terms
- can compress a lot of the "why profile Python" section, it seemed to be interesting to people, but it doesn't help with how to get the job done
- people seemed to "get" the pstats view relatively quickly, can reduce the amount of time discussing that, graphical build-up at the start should help here too
- kcachegrind and runsnakerun GUIs were confusing, building up the graphical "what is profiling" using the same graphics should help
- need to mention the Python 3.0 performance issues... avoiding 3.0 is just something I do automatically when considering performance, apparently
- need to discuss the value of algorithmic improvement much faster, can't assume that O(n) notation is familiar to everyone (we spent 3 or 4 minutes just explaining that), probably want to just drop the O(n) stuff entirely and use an example instead
- the sections on hard-to-profile situations and interesting hotspots were well received, but they are dangerous, many of them are 5-10 minute stories and I *love* digressions
All in all, people seemed to find it useful. There were 3 new programmers and 2 relatively established programmers. Most of them seemed to find it interesting. Feel reasonably good about the presentation and have an image now of where I want to go with it and what really interests people about the topic.
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