[Numpy-discussion] Long term plans for dropping Python 2.7

Antoine Pitrou antoine at python.org
Sun Apr 16 04:39:27 EDT 2017

On Fri, 14 Apr 2017 22:19:42 -0700
Nathaniel Smith <njs at pobox.com> wrote:
> From numpy's perspective, I feel like the most important reason to
> continue supporting 2.7 is our ability to convince people to keep
> upgrading. (Not the only reason, but the most important.) What I mean
> is: if we dropped 2.7 support tomorrow then it wouldn't actually make
> numpy unavailable on python 2.7; it would just mean that lots of users
> stayed at 1.12 indefinitely. Which is awkward, but it wouldn't be the
> end of the world – numpy is mature software and 1.12 works pretty
> well. The big problem IMO would be if this then meant that lots of
> downstream projects felt that they had to continue supporting 1.12
> going forward, which makes it very difficult for us to effectively
> ship new features or even bug fixes – I mean, we can ship them, but
> no-one will use them.

Everyone using Python 3, which is a large and growing number of
people, will be able to use the new features.

I think the model you've outlined above -- a kind of "LTS" Numpy
version that supports 2.7 (with some amount of maintenance going on,
at least to fix important bugs), and later feature releases being
3.x-only, is the right way forward.  It will lighten maintenance of
later versions, allow the Numpy codebase to use modern Python idioms
and stdlib features, and will leave 2.x maintenance to people who
really care about it.

You may already have heard of it, but Django 1.11, which was just
released, is the last feature release to support Python 2.  Further
feature releases of Django will only support Python 3.



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