[Distutils] PEP 517 - a plan of action

Thomas Kluyver thomas at kluyver.me.uk
Sun Aug 27 07:03:19 EDT 2017

Thanks Paul for providing us with a way to move forwards. I'm in favour
of what you propose.

On Sun, Aug 27, 2017, at 11:37 AM, Paul Moore wrote:
> 2. Thomas to complete and publish his library of helper functions for
> PEP 517 consumers (optional - but I think he said he had such a thing
> in progress).

I do. It's not entirely up-to-date with the spec, but it can be found

My plan is to provide two levels of API:
1. Lower-level machinery to easily call PEP 517 hooks in a subprocess
(this is what I've been writing so far)
2. A higher-level 'give me a wheel' interface which identifies the build
dependencies, installs them into a build environment, and calls the
build_wheel hook. Alternatively, this could be a separate package.

I'd like to transfer this repo to PyPA once it's a bit more ready -
assuming PyPA wants it.

> 3. Build PEP 517 interfaces for flit and setuptools.

The work for flit is well out of date, but it can be found here:

> 1. On any remaining questions for the PEP, let's just go for the
> simplest solution for now. Let the PEP authors decide what that is,
> with Nick as BDFL arbitrating if there's disagreement.

I believe that the remaining questions are:
- srcdir-on-sys.path
- Notimplemented/Error (/None)

Unfortunately, it's not clear to me what's the 'simplest' solution on
either, and we can't easily change whichever decision we make. Nathaniel
& Nick still disagree on srcdir-on-sys.path, I believe; I'm not sure how
we resolve that.

I still think the NotImplemented/Error issue is a prime example of
bikeshedding. There clearly isn't one 'right' way to do it, because
intelligent people continue to disagree about it. I'd like somebody to
make the decision and end the argument, but I'm not sure who is 'above
the fray' enough to be able to do that.

> Please understand - I'm not trying to steamroller the process here, or
> force particular decisions. It's just that I know I'm burned out on
> the discussions, to the extent that I'm skimming mails and largely
> ignoring many of the hypothetical arguments, and I'm sure others are
> too.


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