[Python-Dev] Continuing 2.x

Ian Bicking ianb at colorstudy.com
Thu Oct 28 19:25:28 CEST 2010

On Thu, Oct 28, 2010 at 9:04 AM, Barry Warsaw <barry at python.org> wrote:

> Who is the target audience for a Python 2.8?  What exactly would a Python
> 2.8
> accomplish?
> If Python 2.8 doesn't include new features, well, then what's the point?
> Python 2.7 will be bug fix maintained for a long time, longer in fact than
> previous Python 2 versions.  So a no-feature Python 2.8 can't be about
> improving Python 2 stability over time (i.e. just fix the bug in Python
> 2.7).
> If Python 2.8 is about adding new features, then it has to be about
> backporting those features from Python 3.  Adding new feature only to a
> Python
> 2.8 *isn't* Python, it's a fork of Python.

Thinking about language features and core type this seems reasonable, but
with the standard library this seems less reasonable -- there's lots of
conservative changes to the standard library which aren't bug fixes, and the
more the standard library is out of sync between Python 2 and 3 the harder
maintaining software that works across those versions becomes.

Though one opportunity is to distribute modules from the standard library
under new names (e.g., unittest2), and at least in Python 2 you don't have
to do anything fancy or worry about the standard library has catching up to
the standard library forked module.

Library installers seem particularly apropos to this discussion, as everyone
seems excited to get them into the standard library and distributed with
Python, but with the current plan that will never happen with Python 2.

Ian Bicking  |  http://blog.ianbicking.org
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