PyDev of the Week: Lilly Ryan

This week we welcome Lilly Ryan (@attacus_au) as our PyDev of the Week! Lilly is a pen-tester and a recently added board member of the Python Software Foundation. She was an organizer of PyCon AU 2018 and an experienced speaker. In fact, Lilly will be speaking at PyCon Italia in May 2019. You can learn more about Lilly by visiting her website. Let’s take a few moments to get to know Lilly better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

I’m a pen tester from Australia. When I’m not hacking, I spend my time researching for talks, cooking, knitting a variety of strange things, and looking after two very cuddly greyhounds.

I was previously a software developer, a QA, an English tutor, and a medieval historian. My formal education has all been in medieval history, where I specialised in fourteenth century inquisitorial manuals. I started to pick up more detailed tech knowledge after learning that Linux existed, becoming super curious, and spending a lot of my free time diving into learning how to install it on a laptop and debugging desktop installation quirks.

Why did you start using Python?

When I started exploring a career in tech, I stumbled across a free introductory Python workshop being run by the OpenTechSchool in my home city, and went along. I figured that if I could learn Latin, I could learn Python, and it turned out to be true. Python was my first proper introduction to programming, and it stuck with me.

After joining the infosec field, finding excuses to work with Python has been very easy because it is a favoured language of hackers and other curious folk, so I run into it often.

Throughout my career Python has remained my absolute favourite language because of its readability, its amazing collection of useful libraries, and the lovely people in the Python and Django communities.

What other programming languages do you know and which is your favorite?

During my time as a consultant I have worked with JavaScript, Ruby, Java, and COBOL. Out of all of them, I’ve especially enjoyed using Ruby, and I still have cause to use it often because my personal website is built with Jekyll.

These days, however, as I’m not programming as much as I am scripting, my main tools are Python and bash.

Thanks for doing the interview, Lilly

from The Mouse Vs. The Python

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