[Idle-dev] Removing IDLE from the standard library

Tal Einat taleinat at gmail.com
Mon Jul 12 00:31:20 CEST 2010

Glyph Lefkowitz wrote:
> On Jul 11, 2010, at 10:22 AM, Tal Einat wrote:
> The people who are actually *in* those environments seem to disagree with
> you :).  I think you underestimate the difficulty of getting software
> installed and overestimate the demands of new Python users and students.
> While I don't ever use IDLE if there's an alternative available, I have been
> very grateful many times for its presence in environments where it was a
> struggle even to say "install Python".  A workable editor and graphical
> shell is important, whatever its flaws.  (And I think you exaggerate IDLE's
> flaws just a bit.)

I would like to note that I am one of those in those environments.

I have used IDLE to teach Python to new users, and their opinion of
IDLE (and Python as a consequence) wasn't great, precisely because of
the bugs and quirks. Recently I have stopped recommending IDLE for
beginners and have found that this avoids quite a few snags, which is

I have also been in environments where installing anything was
problematic and having IDLE available out-of-the-box was supposed to
be a clear win. I certainly used it, but all of my coworkers
(experienced Pythonistas who have worked with IDLE before) ended up
preferring the basic interpreter and text editors such as vim, despite
my advocacy of IDLE, because they tired of IDLE's snags (e.g. the
inability to run several instances in parallel).

My point is that I don't think I am exaggerating IDLE's flaws. I'm not
saying that it is no longer usable or useful, but I am saying that its
current state is not "okay".

- Tal Einat

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