[Python-Dev] Re: Stability and change

Alex Martelli aleax@aleax.it
Tue, 9 Apr 2002 09:52:43 +0200

On Tuesday 09 April 2002 09:41, Tim Peters wrote:
> No, I don't think backing matters much at all to how a language *becomes*
> popular.  

Ah, OK, we agree on that.  Though it helped Java and VB.

> C and C++ and Java have both popularity and the backing of
> billion-dollar companies *now*, and big money wants to play with big

Once something does become that popular, money flows more (again
I see Java as different -- big money from the start).

> lot of them just copy what the big shops do.  The only reason C got into
> big shops is that American management is so incompetent it didn't notice
> what kinds of risk the hippies in the IT department were taking <0.9
> wink>.

This is possible.  It's not how it got into IBM (I remember the early times
of it at IBM Research), but other managements might have been less
careful or competent.

> give-the-psf-a-billion-dollars-and-we'll-put-it-to-the-test-ly y'rs  -

IBM invested about that much in Linux technologies _after_ Linux had
started earning huge popularity -- surely helped that popularity grow
(IBM claims they're already roughly even in return from that investment
through mainframe sales and consulting services -- Palmisano headed
that effort, and he's IBM's #1 now, having been recently promoted). 

I may be wrong, but I perceive a slowly mounting group of entrepreneurs
trying to make a billion (or whatever:-) from Python -- and quite ready
to feed some of that moolah back, once the moolah IS there.  We'll see...