Real Problems with Python

Neil Schemenauer nascheme at
Thu Feb 10 01:14:02 EST 2000

neelk at <neelk at> wrote:
>Python isn't perfect, and I enjoy thoughtful criticism. But I am sick
>to death of the -stupid- whitespace flamewar, since it's a) not a
>problem, and b) not thoughtful. 

I agree.  Thank you for injecting some intelligence into this

>1. Reference counting memory management

I have a new patch in the works.  Just to wet your appetite:

    * It is portable.  It should run anywhere Python runs.

    * It does not require rewriting or recompiling existing
      extension modules.

    * It has very low overhead.

The bad news is that:

    * It only finds cycles that involve lists, tuples,
      dictionaries, instances and classes and that have a least
      one dictionary in them.

    * __del__ methods sometimes may not be called for instances
      involved in cycles.

    * It requires some extra memory when doing the collection.

I still need to clean up and test the patch some more but things
are looking good.  It currently is not thread safe but should be
possible to make so.  If anyone is interested in helping out or
testing it, a prelimiary patch is at:

Comments are definitely appreciated.


"Applying computer technology is simply finding the right wrench to
pound in the correct screw." -- Tim Wright, Sequent Computer Systems.

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