[Distutils] [Catalog-sig] packaging terminology confusion

Brad Allen bradallen137 at gmail.com
Sun Jan 10 17:01:40 CET 2010

On Sun, Jan 10, 2010 at 5:53 AM, Tarek Ziadé <ziade.tarek at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sun, Jan 10, 2010 at 12:40 PM, Ben Finney <ben+python at benfinney.id.au> wrote:
>> Lennart Regebro <regebro at gmail.com> writes:
>>> On Sun, Jan 10, 2010 at 10:01, Glyph Lefkowitz <glyph at twistedmatrix.com> wrote:
>>> > This is precisely what I meant to recommend: "Parcel" would be a
>>> > good replacement word for the Python-specific meaning of
>>> > "distribution".  I'm sorry if I was ambiguous and created confusion.
>>> I think it sounds too much like a python-specific word, like "egg".
>> Agreed.
>> At this point, people are just going to keep calling this entity a
>> “package”, consistent with the majority of other languages and systems
>> out there.
> Who is "people". AFAIK, most Python developers use the word "package"
> for "python package"
> and when they use the word "package" for "distribution", they will
> stop doing it if they are told
> that the proper word is "distribution" imho.

Maybe that will work...if we go that route, can we shorten 'module
distribution' to just 'distribution' in the distutils terminology
docs? That would help support the general usage.

We would also need to change the PyPI web pages which uses the word
'package' a lot. I see it in a lot of the README files published
through PyPI as well.

>> We'd have more chance, I think, of changing Python's concept “namespace
>> that behaves like a module and can have sub-modules” — currently called
>> “package” — to a different word and encouraging adoption of that new
>> term.
> I think this is a way bigger change

Yes, it's a big change but common usage is a strong tailwind which
could make it easier. It could start with a PEP and a survey link sent
to python-announce. Personally I strongly prefer the word 'package'
the way it is used today in the PyPI user interface. Using the word
'distribution' all over that page just doesn't seem right...

For future reference, here is what the PyPI front page shows today:
The Python Package Index is a repository of software for the Python
programming language. There are currently 8639 packages here. To
contact the PyPI admins, please use the Get help or Bug reports links.

To submit a package use "python setup.py upload" and to use a package
from this index either "pip install package" or download, unpack and
"python setup.py install" it.

    * Browse the tree of packages
    * Submit package information (note that you must register to submit)

There now is an RPM repository that provides RPMs for most of the
packages available here on PyPI.

Updated	Package	Description
2010-01-10 	PyFFI 2.1.0 	Processing block structured binary files.
2010-01-10 	bdist_nsi 0.1.1 	Create NSIS windows installers for Python modules.
2010-01-10 	zope.app.intid 3.7.1 	ZMI views for Integer Id Utility
2010-01-10 	Clip2Zeus 0.5 	Monitor your clipboard for URLs and
automatically shorten them using 2Zeus
2010-01-10 	bluebream 0.1.7 	The Zope Web Framework
2010-01-10 	testrepository 0.0.2 	A repository of test results.

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