[Python-Dev] 2.4 news reaches interesting places

damien morton pythondev at bitfurnace.com
Wed Dec 8 23:59:05 CET 2004

Guido van Rossum wrote:
> I was pleasantly surprised to find a pointer to this article in a news
> digest that the ACM emails me regularly (ACM TechNews).
> http://gcn.com/vol1_no1/daily-updates/28026-1.html
> One thing that bugs me: the article says 3 or 4 times that Python is
> slow, each time with a refutation ("but it's so flexible", "but it's
> fast enough") but still, they sure seem to harp on the point. This is
> a PR issue that Python needs to fight -- any ideas?

In public documents - documentation, release notes, etc etc.:

Remove all references to the performance of Python. From now on, Python 
has always been extremely fast, has no need to get any faster, and any 
speed increases are of so little importance that they barely rate a 
mention (no percentage increases mentioned in release notes).

If you must mention performance, do it in terms of the use of C modules 
such as numarray, and for benchmarks that other languages cant compete 
in. Write a benchmark which uses common C extensions, that Java cant 
compete with.

Replace all references to a 'Python interpreter' with 'Python Virtual 

Ensure that the terms 'Python compiler' and 'compiled python' are 
liberally sprinkled around. Start emphasising the compilation step from 
python source to python bytecodes instead of making it transparent.

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