Why do we call python a scripting language?

Guy Oliver guy_oliver at yahoo.com
Fri Aug 27 13:29:18 CEST 1999


> <guy_oliver at yahoo.com> wrote:
> > Why do we call python a scripting language?  
> 
> who's calling it that? ;-)
> 
> http://www.python.org/doc/Summary.html
> says:
> 
>     Python is an interpreted, interactive, object-
>     oriented programming language.
> 
> which is, of course, exactly what it is.
> 

I don't think I've seen anyone 'official' (meaning guido et al) say
anything like that, but I see it used in the media (must have come
from someone), in news postings, and in people trying to explain
what python is to others.

Now, I know there is no "one true language", or if there is, I
haven't figured out what it is.  And I am not trying to say that
python is or is not a "real" programming language (what ever that
is), but I have often tried to pitch python to someone as a
solution to a problem, expecting some resistance due to
unfamiliarity, only to have someone ask if its a "real programming
language".  

Even after explaining it to them, and telling them my success
stories, the improvements in productivity, the portability, etc, it
seems that python suffers from the same view that hurts other
interpreted languages, specifically, that interpreted languages,
aka scripting languages, are for throw-away scripts, nothing more.

I'm wondering if there is anything that can be done to combat this?
 With education, it goes away, but I expect people to equate script
with simple for a long time, so the quickest solution seems to be
try to distance 'python' from 'script'.




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