[Python-ideas] Python 3000 TIOBE -3%

Massimo Di Pierro massimo.dipierro at gmail.com
Thu Feb 9 17:49:29 CET 2012

Here is another data point:

Unfortunately the TIOBE index does matter. I can speak for python in  
education and trends I seen.

Python is and remains the easiest language to teach but it is no  
longer true that getting Python to run is easer than alternatives (not  
for the average undergrad student). It used to be you download python  
2.5 and you were in business. Now you have to make a choice 2.x or  
3.x. 20% of the students cannot tell one from the other (even after  
been told repeatedly which one to use). Three weeks into the class  
they complain with "the class code won't compile" (the same 20% cannot  
tell a compiler form an interpreter).

50+% of the students have a mac and an increasing number of packages  
depend on numpy. Installing numpy on mac is a lottery.

Those who do not have a mac have windows and they expect an IDE like  
eclipse. I know you can use Python with eclipse but they do not. They  
download Python and complain that IDLE has no autocompletion, no line  
numbers, no collapsible functions/classes.

 From the hard core computer scientists prospective there are usually  
three objections to using Python:
- Most software engineers think we should only teach static type  
- Those who care about scalability complain about the GIL
- The programming language purists complain about the use of reference  
counting instead of garbage collection

The net result is that people cannot agree and it is getting  
increasingly difficult to make the case for the use of Python in intro  
CS courses. For some reason javaScript seems to win these days.


On Feb 9, 2012, at 8:36 AM, anatoly techtonik wrote:

> Hi,
> I didn't want to grow FUD on python-dev, but a FUD there seems to be  
> a good topic for discussion here.
> http://www.tiobe.com/index.php/content/paperinfo/tpci/index.html
> As you may see, Python is losing its positions. I blame Python 3 and  
> that Python development is not concentrating on users enough [1],  
> and that there is a big resistance in getting the things done (/ 
> moin/ prefix story) and the whole communication process is a bit  
> discouraging. If it is not the cause, then the cause is the lack of  
> visibility into the real problem, but what the real problem is?
> I guess the topic is for upcoming language summit at PyCon, but it  
> will be hard for me to get there this year from Belarus, so it would  
> be nice to read some opinions here.
> 1. http://python-for-humans.heroku.com/
> -- 
> anatoly t.
> _______________________________________________
> Python-ideas mailing list
> Python-ideas at python.org
> http://mail.python.org/mailman/listinfo/python-ideas

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