[Chicago] Perl v Python

Brian Costlow brian.costlow at gmail.com
Tue May 19 16:08:20 CEST 2015

This is a little bit apples & oranges...

The Perl DBI is installed, but it's the interface layer, you still need a
driver, e.g. DBD::Pg, to access a particular database. And they're not all
(or always) installed in a particular distro. I did some Perl work on
Solaris w/ Python 2.5 in the early 2000s. Had a fun time (not) getting a
newer version of DBD::mysql we needed compiled and installed.

The Python equivalent is the db-api,
https://www.python.org/dev/peps/pep-0249/  a standard for the API that
database drivers should present in Python. Though not all database driver
packages implement it.

Last, a lot of the stuff that pops up when you search PyPI using the term
'database' aren't database drivers. There are ORMs, utilities for wrapping
online services, db utilities, and other stuff in there.



On Tue, May 19, 2015 at 6:27 AM, Tanya Schlusser <tanya at tickel.net> wrote:

> Colleagues in IT consulting still use Perl because despite its 'more than
> one way to do it' approach they have a single, stable package (DBI)
> <http://dbi.perl.org/> for database interface that is installed on all of
> our clients' systems, even legacy solaris ones using Python 2.5. They swear
> it is the easiest database interface they've ever used.
> Python has at least a half dozen serious contenders, and a few hundred
> overall it looks like from pypi
> <https://pypi.python.org/pypi?%3Aaction=search&term=database&submit=search>.
> And sometimes installation is nontrivial. People will pull data with Perl
> scripts, then switch to Python for manipulation. (and used to be then
> switch to R for analytics).
> Best,
> Tanya
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