[Python-Dev] Python 3 migration status update across some key subcommunities (was Re: 2.7 is here until 2020, please don't call it a waste.)

Florian Bruhin me at the-compiler.org
Sun May 31 16:44:30 CEST 2015

* Nick Coghlan <ncoghlan at gmail.com> [2015-06-01 00:15:01 +1000]:
> On 31 May 2015 at 19:07, Ludovic Gasc <gmludo at gmail.com> wrote:
> > About Python 3 migration, I think that one of our best control stick is
> > newcomers, and by extension, Python trainers/teachers.
> > If newcomers learn first Python 3, when they will start to work
> > professionally, they should help to rationalize the Python 3 migration
> > inside existing dev teams, especially because they don't have an interest
> > conflict based on the fact that they haven't written plenty of code with
> > Python 2.
> > 2020 is around the corner, 5 years shouldn't be enough to change the
> > community mind, I don't know.
> The education community started switching a while back - if you watch
> Carrie-Anne Philbin's PyCon UK 2014 keynote, one of her requests for
> the broader Python community was for everyone else to just catch up
> already in order to reduce student's confusion (she phrased it more
> politely than that, though). Educators need to tweak examples and
> exercises to account for a version switch, but that's substantially
> easier than migrating hundreds of thousands or even millions of lines
> of production code.
> And yes, if you learn Python 3 first, subsequently encountering Python
> 2's quirks and cruft is likely to encourage folks that know both
> versions of the language to start advocating for a version upgrade :)

I think a big issue here is the lack of good newcomer tutorials for
Python 3.

In the #python IRC channel, "learn Python the hard way"[1] is often
recommended, and the common consensus seems to be that all other
tutorials (other than the official one[2] which is clearly not aimed
at newcomers to programming) seem to lack in some way.

LPTHW is Python 2 only, so at least from what I see in #python, many
newcomers are recommended to learn Python 2 rather than 3 because of

I agree migrating large existing codebases (and developers) from 2 to
3 can be quite an issue, and a lot of energy went into making this
easier (which is good!). But I also think nobody fresh to Python
should start learning Python 2 now, except when there's a compelling
reason (such as unported libraries without alternatives).


[1] http://learnpythonthehardway.org/book/
[2] https://docs.python.org/3/tutorial/index.html

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