Stefan Behnel elected to Fellow of the Python Software Foundation

We are very happy and proud that Stefan Behnel, Tech Lead Data Team at TrustYou, was elected Fellow to the Python Software Foundation (PSF). Founded in 2001, the non-profit organization is dedicated to promote and advance the Python programming language. Many of the TrustYou products are based on Python, and thus it is part of his everyday work. Moreover, Stefan is a regular speaker at tech conferences and meetups, a long-time Python user and core developer of the well-known OSS projects Cython and lxml. He works on big data pipelines at TrustYou, encourages people to use Python and talk about it. Additionally, he gives lectures and training on Cython programming and High-Performance Computing.

S Behnel

The programming language has gained more popularity over the past years, as a recent study by the Indeed Hiring Lab for the German software development market has shown. Many countries all around the world have national Python associations which hold conferences, and local meetups become part of the python enthusiasts event calendar.

With engineering team members in Cluj-Napoca, Madrid, and Munich, TrustYou is regularly hosting Python meetups and sponsors Python conferences like the EuroPython in Edinburgh or the PyConES in Málaga, in order to engage with the international Python community.

So let’s check with Stefan about the news and what’s so special about the Python language!

How did you learn about the acceptance in the fellow circle?

I found the PSF email in my inbox, and then had to check what that actually means. You know, it could easily have been a hoax by the Python Secret Underground (which emphatically does not exist). But no, it turned out that I am now one of around 300 PSF Fellows worldwide who were nominated and elected during the last 17 years for their contributions to the Python ecosystem and its community. It is an honor for me to be a part of that circle.

When did you start learning Python?

I can’t remember the exact circumstances, that was some 17 years ago. Switching from industrial software development (in Java) to scientific work at the Technical University of Darmstadt, I got in touch with the language. I never regretted it since. It’s an extremely versatile language in broad use. It helped me through my doctorate, allowed me to solve tons of problems and work on several exciting projects, and got me in contact with a great many interesting people, all around the world.

What was the first thing you coded in Python?

Mostly scripts, automating things, converting data formats. Really little things here and there. That’s also an impressive thing about Python: it scales from very little tasks to very large applications. It’s an efficient way to get things done all along that scale.

The majority of TrustYou products is based on python. What are you currently working on?

It’s a nice mix of big and small things. Much of what I did was tuning and speeding up processes and calculations in our big data pipelines. And on the other hand, I’m part of the architectural guild, where we tackle the broader design choices in our system landscape. Many interesting challenges to solve here.

Being now Fellow of the PSF, what does this mean? Are there any privileges, responsibilities, or other aspects that come with it?

This is certainly something to put on my homepage and resume :-). It would also allow me to join the elections for newly nominated Fellows, but apart from that, I think it’s mostly a way for the PSF to express the value of contributions to the Python community, and to say “Thank you!” to those who invest their time into keeping Python, the language, the ecosystem and the community, as diverse and great as it is.