[Python-Dev] Event loops, PyOS_InputHook, and Tkinter

Michiel Jan Laurens de Hoon mdehoon at c2b2.columbia.edu
Thu Nov 10 02:04:43 CET 2005

Martin v. Löwis wrote:

> Michiel Jan Laurens de Hoon wrote:
>> 2) Will Tkinter always be the standard toolkit for Python, or are 
>> there plans to replace it at some point?
> Python does not evolve along a grand master plan. Instead, individual
> contributors propose specific modifications, e.g. through PEPs.

At this point, I can't propose a specific modification yet because I 
don't know the reasoning that went behind the original choice of Tk as 
the default GUI toolkit for Python (and hence, I don't know if those 
reasons are still valid today). I can see one disadvantage (using Tk 
limits our options to run an event loop for other Python extensions), 
and I am trying to find out why Tk was deemed more appropriate than 
other GUI toolkits anyway.

So let me rephrase the question: What is the advantage of Tk in 
comparison to other GUI toolkits? Is it Mac availability? More advanced 
widget set? Installation is easier? Portability? Switching to a 
different GUI toolkit would break too much existing code? I think that 
having the answer to this will stimulate further development of 
alternative GUI toolkits, which may give some future Python version a 
toolkit at least as good as Tk, and one that doesn't interfere with 
Python's event loop capabilities.


Michiel de Hoon
Center for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics
Columbia University
1150 St Nicholas Avenue
New York, NY 10032

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