Why do we call python a scripting language?

Fred Pacquier fredp at multimania.com.nospam
Fri Aug 27 14:59:18 CEST 1999

guy_oliver at yahoo.com (Guy Oliver) said :

>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'.

You have something there. Maybe another way would be to showcase the 'real' 
applications and their strengths, preferably in ways people can relate and 
compare to similar 'traditional' apps. Unfortunately it seems (to me) that 
such desktop, user-oriented apps in Python are still scarce ; much of the 
industrial-strength (like BSCW or Zope) happens on the backend and is Web-
oriented. Impressive for the initiate, but abstract and hard to marvel over 
for the profane. The one app that 'did it' for me, curiously, is PySol. 
It's a game, but a game engine, and a powerful one. And it shuffles around 
a lot of graphics (pun intended), which may surprise people biased by the 
'scripting language' tag. Right now I'm dabbling with similar stuff in 
wxPython instead of Tk, and I'm even more impressed.

Yet another selling point might be if IDLE or PythonWin or some other seed 
came to evolve into a full-blown IDE up to par with Microsoft's or 
Borland's, that might impress the developer population. After all, VC++ is 
done in MFC/C++ and Delphi in ObjectPascal, right ? But I seem to recall 
this was all discussed to death some months ago... :-)

YAFAP : http://www.multimania.com/fredp/

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