While not represented in our blog activity, 2014 turned out to be a very busy year for NumFOCUS. We sponsored more projects, gained new board members, and added programs. It has been hard to keep up with all the activity within the organization, but perhaps much harder for those outside. Let me go through a few of the highlights from the year to get folks caught up.
First and foremost, we had the first election process. This has allowed us to welcome Lorena Barba, Brian Granger, Stefan Karpinski and Cindee Madison to the board of directors. In an effort to grow the number of people helping out we have also formed two new ways for people to contribute: Advisor Council and Vice President roles. The inaugural advisor council consists of Fernando Perez and Travis Oliphant. They will help guide the organization as it grows in both scope and operations. The new Vice President are Sheila Miguez, James Powell and Ben Zaitlen, all committed community members who have helped in various ways to get us started. We are always looking for more volunteers to help build our organization, but with these added team members we hope to continue to deliver high quality services to our community.
Over the year we held four PyData conferences, supported one John Hunter Technology Fellow, lead Women in Technology bootcamps, helped between 20 and 30 conference attendees travel to important conferences, and more. As the new year starts, we will be doing many of these things plus working with the Training Up program. We see the need to not only sponsor projects but to create important programs that get the community together. As always, we are always looking for more volunteers for these events, so please do get in touch.
Perhaps one of the most exciting things that we did this year is expand our language scope from a Python centric organization to include several non-Python projects. We have ROpenSci and Julia now a part of our line up. Joining us on the education front are Software Carpentry and sister organization Data Carpentry. We also finished signing our Python projects that we had been working with for a while including: SymPy, IPython, and AstroPy. While fiscal sponsorship doesn’t make sense for every project, it is a service we happily provide to help projects sustain and grow in natural ways.
In the coming year, we plan to be a great deal more vocal about our activities. Personally, two major goals I have is to expand our reach to Europe and start making headway on project governance recommendations. But that is another story.