Leader of Birmingham.pm [pm.org] and a CPAN author [cpan.org]. Co-organised YAPC::Europe in 2006 and the 2009 QA Hackathon, responsible for the YAPC Conference Surveys [yapc-surveys.org] and the QA Hackathon [qa-hackathon.org] websites. Also the current caretaker for the CPAN Testers websites and data stores.
If you really want to find out more, buy me a Guinness
For the last two years we've run a survey after YAPC::Europe, which has had a very positive response. It's also helped to generate new ideas about what people want from the conferences and provides good feedback to past and future organisers, of what worked and what didn't. As mentioned in a previous post, I'm trying to think of questions that would be suitable to understand how newcomers felt about the conference. I've been pinching ideas from other surveys and think I've got a decent set of survey question ready this time around, so I'm looking forward to seeing the results.
The new survey backend has been rewritten, as I originally wrote it purely in HTML and all the form field names where handcrafted, requiring a lot of effort in the backend. The rewrite was much easier in the end than I expected. The survey file is now written in YAML, with a fairly straightforward schema, which I'll get round to documenting at some point, and the backend to create the HTML and save the form field entries is mostly centred on parsing the YAML and the CGI parameters. The rest hangs off all the previous work I've already done with Labyrinth. My long term goal was to plug this into ACT, so that organisers would only need to flip the switch and have all the survey codes generated and mails sent to attendees automatically. It probably will eventually get into ACT, but for YAPC::Europe 2008 I'll be running from my system.
However, this year I plan to flip the switch on the last day of the conference and not a couple of weeks later, as a common complaint from attendees is that by the time they receive the notification, they've forgotten a lot of what they wanted to say. Not that that has stopped many attendees giving us feedback