[Python-Dev] Import and unicode: part two

Nick Coghlan ncoghlan at gmail.com
Fri Jan 21 06:59:13 CET 2011

On Fri, Jan 21, 2011 at 3:44 PM, Atsuo Ishimoto <ishimoto at gembook.org> wrote:
> I don't want Python to encourage people to use non-ascii module names.
> Today, seeing UnicodeEncodingError is one of popular reasons for
> newbies to abandon learning Python in Japan. Non-ascii module name is
> an another source of confusion for newbies.
> Experienced Japanese programmers may not use non-ascii module names to
> avoid encoding issues.
> But novice programmers or non-programmers willing to learn programming
> with Python will wish to use Japanese module names. Their programs
> will stop working if they copy them to another environment. Sooner or
> later, they will see storange ImportError and will start complaining
> "Python sucks! Python doesn't support Japanese!" on Twitter.
> Copying files with non-ascii file name over platform is not easy as it
> sounds. What happen if I copy such files from OSX to my web hosting
> server ? Results might differ depending on tools I use to copy and
> platforms.

These all sound like good reasons to continue to *advise* against
using non-ASCII module names. But aside from that, they sound exactly
like a lot of the arguments we heard when Py3k started enforcing the
bytes/text distinction more rigorously: "you're going to break

Yes, we know. But if core software development components like Python
don't try to improve their Unicode support, how is the situation ever
going to get better?


Nick Coghlan   |   ncoghlan at gmail.com   |   Brisbane, Australia

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