I've just had a thought. Maybe it would be less of a mess if what we are calling "iterators" had been called "streams"
Possibly -- I did use the "streams" name often in the tutorial on iterators and generators, it's a very natural term.
OTOH in C++ and Java, "stream" refers to an open file object (to emphasize the iteratorish feeling of a file opened for sequential reading or writing, as opposed to the concept of a file as a random-access array of bytes on disk).
...and in Unix Sys/V, if I recall correctly, it refered to an allegedly superior way to do things BSD did with sockets (and more). Any nice-looking term will be complicatedly overloaded by now. I think "seborrea" is still free, though (according to some old Dilbert strips, at least).
Bah. I rather like the idea of using "stream" to denote the future rewritten I/O object, so I don't want to use it for iterators.
Which leads us back to my "this is rather academic" statement: don't we need to stick with stdio to support existing extensions which use FILE*'s, anyway?
We'll need to support the old style files for a long time. But that doesn't mean we can't invent something new that does't use stdio (or perhaps it uses stdio, just doesn't rely on stdio for various features).
--Guido van Rossum (home page: http://www.python.org/%7Eguido/)