[Baypiggies] Two distinct categories of newbies

Stephen McInerney spmcinerney at hotmail.com
Sun Feb 11 02:34:33 CET 2007

There are two distinct categories of newbies, be aware that these are very 

1) people who are new to programming
(also includes the rapidly-growing sector of people using Python in 
education at all levels (elementary, high-school, science, visualization).)

2) people who are new to Python but experienced in programming
(i.e. migrators from PERL,C++,Java,VB etc.)
Most of their time is spent with a syntax guide, reference manual,
package reference, and also in translating or learning new idioms
("how do I implement feature X from language Y?"), design patterns
and unlearning bad or suboptimal practices from their old languages.
(e.g. I mentioned before the book "PERL to Python Migration" by Martin C 
- it only addresses the syntax and library reference, but it's the best I've 

You might include in this 2a) people who became disillusioned with the lack 
of useful features of their previous language ("paradigm shoppers").
So to address these it is best to present
"Top Ten Things that are Easier/Faster/Better in Python than PERL"
(e.g. you can create arbitrarily-deep nested data structures, and they will 
throw a very helpful and descriptive exception if you use the wrong accessor 
function, instead of continuing silently as PERL does).


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