[python-advocacy] Obstacles to the adoption of Python

Jeff Rush jeff at taupro.com
Sat Mar 22 08:36:10 CET 2008

Aahz wrote:
>> I've been thinking recently about the best way to increase the
>> adoption rate of Python.
> Okay, time for me to play the curmudgeon: why?

My turn... ;-)

> I mean, obviously I think some kind of advocacy is a Good Idea, or I
> wouldn't be here (nor would I have written a Python book), but I believe
> that thinking of advocacy in simple terms of increasing Python usage is
> the wrong approach.
> I believe that overall the right approach should focus on increasing the
> Python community.

This is not clear - "increase the Python community <what>"?

For some, the community is the set of all programmers using Python, whether in 
IT departments, classrooms or in isolation.  I get the feeling you mean 
something else, but fail to see why "increasing the adoption rate" does not 
map to "increasing the size of the community", at some conversion ratio.

 > I think Python's merits are sufficient by themselves
> to increase Python's usage -- just look at Python's growth over the past
> few years.  The long-term health of Python is dependent on drawing people
> into participating in the community and contributing to it.

True, that participation is critical to maintaining the feel of community, but 
the tasks of improving the documentation and online repository can draw upon 
that community and perhaps challenge some to get involved in those aspects. 
People needs tasks, need to feel useful, to belong.

I guess the question is how do you get others involved in -anything-, and one 
way is by expressing clearly the needs of the community, giving support and 
encouragement to those who step forward, and word praise for good results. 
Although Python is doing well, there are still unmet needs and a somewhat 
reduced rate of volunteerism, compared to say WorldCon or the SCA.


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