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19 Oct 2023

Wagtailers flew together at DjangoCon US 2023

A fun week for Wagtail in Durham, North Carolina

Meagen Voss

Meagen Voss

Wagtail community manager

A group of 18 Wagtail enthusiasts at DjangoConUS standing in front of the Wagtail booth.

Wagtail had a great showing at DjangoCon US this week. Many of our community members came together to give talks, trade ideas, and share our love for Wagtail with all of the new friends we made in Durham, North Carolina.

Sage Abdullah of Torchbox gave the first Wagtail talk of the conference with his presentation on how to provide a modern editing experience for Django models. For many people in the audience, it was their first introduction to Wagtail and a lot of them were very excited to give it a try after Sage showed them how it worked. If you have any friends who are new to Wagtail, you can share Sage's slides or this thread with them.

Dawn Wages, who works for Microsoft, shared the results from the first co-hort of the Djangonaut Space program. This program, which she co-launched with Django community member Rachell Calhoun, provides mentors for first-time Django contributors and helps them become regular contributors to the Django project. Dawn also shared some power moves for developing great Python projects in VS Code in her tutorial.

Thibaud Colas is waving at the audience from the stage at the Durham Convention Center.

Scott Cranfill from the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, presented a great practical talk for making your Wagtail projects as accessible as they can be. He demonstrated a lot of the code updates and adjustments he makes in his own projects. You can have a look at Scott's code and his slides in his talk repository. Everyone who values accessibility should give Scott's code a try.

Continuing with the accessibility theme, Thibaud Colas of Torchbox gave a deep dive talk on accessibility in Django and demonstrated that like many open source projects, the Django project still has a lot of work to do when it comes to accessibility. Thibaud reported that there has been some progress though and he's happy to see changes are being made, such as some of the more recent updates that have made Django forms more accessible. You can see many of Thibaud's key points in his talk slides and this thread.

There are six smiling people from the Wagtail table at a picnic table enjoying a nice dinner out after a day of great talks at DjangoCon.

Two of our community members weighed in on non-Django topics as well. Vince Salvino of CodeRed shared a lighting talk on How to Start a Business. And Tim Allen from the Wharton School of Business shared his opinions on the recent AI hype in a talk about past trends in technology and what we can learn from them.

On the sprint days, some of our Wagtail people got together in the Caktus Group office to take on some Wagtail issues and put some of the finishing touches on our Wagtail 5.2 release candidate. We also spent some time collaborating and sharing ideas with the Django accessibility team.

You're looking at three Wagtailers hard at work on Wagtail issues in a conference room.

On top of the talks and sprints, Wagtail also had booth this year thanks to the generosity of CodeRed and Torchbox. Our booth had a constant stream of visitors eager to learn about Wagtail as well as people looking for help troubleshooting their existing projects. We're thrilled we got to share our favorite content management system with so many people.

Our next in-person events will be in 2024, including Wagtail Space! If you want to join us, the best way to hear about our events and all the latest Wagtail news is to sign up for our newsletter This Week in Wagtail.