On Talk Retirement

Posted by Katie McLaughlin on June 7, 2016

I first gave a version of my LABHR talk in March 2015 in Sydney at a SydPHP lightning talk meetup night. The last version of my LABHR talk was given in May 2016 in Portland.

I’m not going to give this talk again.

Why? Because I’ve done all I can with it.

What started out as a 5-minute chat about a blog post turned into a international tour. I’ve given this talk at full length six times in cities such as Melbourne, Christchurch, St Louis and Portland. I gave it as a keynote in Brisbane. I’ve given lightning talk versions seven times in cities including Sydney, Melbourne, Geelong, Wellington, Hobart and Budapest.

Since the first lightning talk, I’ve spoken with many people about the topic, including some people at GitHub itself.

Since the first version, GitHub has changed a lot of the stuff I was ‘complaining’ about. The contribution graph has changed, removing streaks and adding the ability to show private contributions. You can now start to actually customise your profile with bios.

octohatrack is feature-complete. The website version has a little bit to go to match the CLI, but it’s also nearly there.

I’ve started the conversation, and I’ll continue to have conversations about this topic, but I don’t need a stage for this conversation any more.

And as of last week, it’s come full circle. I gave this talk in Portland last week at PyCon US. The first time was in Brisbane for PyCon AU. I was fortunate enough to have a few people in the the audience who were there for both the first and last versions of the talk. In fact, the PyCon US version includes some of the feedback from the first version.

So, given all of this, I think it’s safe to say that I’ve done this talk. It’s done. I can’t do anything more with it. I can’t think of a better place to leave it, and I can’t think of anywhere else that I’d want to take it.

So that’s it. “Build a Better Hat Rack: All Contributions Welcome” is done.

If you haven’t already seen it, there are plenty of recorded versions, including from the tweet at the top of this article.

If you’ve seen me give this talk live: thank you. Having people in your audience when you give a talk, especially at a multiple-stream event where there’s a choice of talk, is testament to the fact that people want to listen to you and hear what you have to say.

And to everyone that’s helped out with the code, the talk, and everything else around the place, especially to Leslie Hawthorn who started this whole thing with a little blog post just over a year ago: you’re amazing. Thank you.