[Python-Dev] PEP 484 (Type Hints) announcement

Mark Shannon mark at hotpy.org
Fri May 22 22:51:36 CEST 2015

Hello all,

I am pleased to announce that I am accepting PEP 484 (Type Hints).

Given the proximity of the beta release I thought I would get this 
announcement out now, even though there are some (very) minor details to 
iron out.
(If you want to know the details, it's all at 

I hope that PEP 484 will be a benefit to all users of Python.
I think the proposed annotation semantics and accompanying module are 
technically sound and I hope that they are socially acceptable to the 
Python community.

I have long been aware that as well as a powerful, sophisticated and 
"production quality" language, Python is also used by many casual 
programmers, and as a language to introduce children to programming.
I also realise that this PEP does not look like it will be any help to 
the part-time programmer or beginner. However, I am convinced that it 
will enable significant improvements to IDEs (hopefully including IDLE), 
static checkers and other tools.
These tools will then help us all, beginners included.

This PEP has been a huge amount of work, involving a lot of people.
So thank you to everyone involved. If I were to list names I would 
inevitably miss someone out. You know who you are.

Finally, if you are worried that this will make Python ugly and turn it 
into some sort of inferior Java, then I share you concerns, but I would 
like to remind you of another potential ugliness; operator overloading.

C++, Perl and Haskell have operator overloading and it gets abused 
something rotten to produce "concise" (a.k.a. line noise) code.
Python also has operator overloading and it is used sensibly, as it 
should be. Why?
It's a cultural issue; readability matters.

Python is your language, please use type-hints responsibly :)


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