What is Python?

Tim Hammerquist tim at degree.ath.cx
Fri Sep 15 09:09:36 CEST 2000

Cameron Laird <claird at starbase.neosoft.com> wrote:
> There are other arguments for Python's comparative superiority
> for large programming projects:
> 1.  Python has a better OO model, and OO is a benefit
>     in big work.
> 2.  A slight variation on what you wrote:  Perl's
>     syntax is undeniably complex, and this adversely
>     affects teamwork.  It seems unavoidable that some
>     of the Perl code in a large team project will be
>     opaque to some of the team members.  Python, in
>     contrast, has a sufficiently coherent syntax that
>     experienced coders can apprehend anything they
>     run across, even if they didn't write it
>     themselves.
> 3.  Python's module system is allegedly cleaner.
> 4.  Big projects inevitably pick up mixed-language
>     objects.  Only magicians interface Perl to foreign
>     languages (like C).  Python, in contrast, is easy
>     to extend.
> I summarize:  Perl is a fine language for implementing many large-
> scale projects.  Aahz correctly reported that Python is generally
> regarded as superior to Perl in this regard, and gave one example
> of its advantage.  That's not Python's only advantage, though.

Maybe I'm just quick at picking things up, but I actually find:
	1.	Perl has a rather sad excuse for OOP.  It's slow and bulky, not
		mention a few other things.
	2.	Perl's syntax is admittedly "noisy," but that's part of its
		charm!  And an experienced Perl programmer will be able to
		easily comprehend (and often criticize) any code he/she comes
		across, assuming it's not overly (and deliberately) obfuscated.
	3.	The module system of both Perl and Python are actually quite
		sensical.  I couldn't honestly pick a favorite.
	4.	Python appears to be much closer to its C roots than the very
		abstracted Perl, and I will most likely come to appreciate this
		alot.  And I would personally feel much more comfortable
		programming a larger app in Python than Perl...and I'm a
		hardcore Perl fan!

Now an explanation:
	I'm new to this NG, and I hope I haven't stepped on too many feet
	right off the bat.  I decided to adopt Python as a language due to
	the increasing number of comp.lang.perl.misc users who endorse
	Python (risking persecution by all present).

	My first and continuing impression is that I really enjoy Python.  I
	really enjoy Perl as well.  Like different friends bring out
	different aspects of your personality, Perl and Python both express
	different but equal aspects of programming that I enjoy.

	For this reason, I refuse to choose sides as the emacs vs. vi folks
	do.  I resolve to do my best to be fair and balanced (though I'm an
	admitted vi man).  I'm not afraid to type a few extra lines, though
	I do enjoy seeing how one line of perl can do.  I'm not afraid to
	call a spade a shovel, but I'd really rather not use a spade to dig
	a reservoir. =)

Um, that was probably a bit too much about me.  Sorry.

*grabs flame-proof armor*  =)

-Tim Hammerquist <timmy at cpan.org>
Love is like racing across the frozen tundra on a
snowmobile which flips over, trapping you underneath.
At night, the ice-weasels come.

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