[Python-3000] educational aspects of Python 3000

Michael Chermside mcherm at mcherm.com
Mon Sep 11 20:22:15 CEST 2006

Toby Donaldson writes:
> Any suggestions for how educators interested in the
> educational/learning aspects of Python 3000 could more fruitfully
> participate?

You're doing pretty well so far! Seriously... just speak up: Pythonistas
(including, in particular, Guido) value the fact that Python is an
excellent language for beginners, and we'll go out of our way to keep
it so. But you might need to speak up.

> For teaching purposes, many educators report that they like raw_input
> (and input). The basic argument is that, for beginners, code like
>      name = raw_input('Morbo demands your name! ')
> is clearer and easier than using sys.stdin.readline().
> For instance, would there be interest in the inclusion of a standard
> educational library...

Personally, I think input() should never have existed and must go
no matter what. I think raw_input() is worth discussing -- I wouldn't
need it, but it's little more than a convenience function.

The idea of a standard edu library though is a GREAT one. That would
provide a standard place for things like raw_input() (with a better
name) as well as lots of other "helper functions" useful to beginners
and/or students -- and all it would cost is a single line of boilerplate
at the top of each program ("from beginnerlib import *" or something
like that).

I suspect that such a library would be enthusiastically welcomed into
the Python core distribution *IF* there was clear consensus about
what it should contain. So if the EDU-SIG could do the hard work of
obtaining the consensus (and mark my words... it IS hard work), I
think you'd be 90% of the way there.

-- Michael Chermside

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