PEP0238 lament

Donn Cave donn at u.washington.edu
Mon Jul 23 20:04:29 CEST 2001


Quoth paul at boddie.net (Paul Boddie):
...
| I can see people seriously suggesting a "pythonfork" project if the
| debate gets any more intense. :-O

Has already happened, names proposed etc.  I see you don't have time
to read all the threads, speaks well of you I might add.

Discussion seems a little futile at this point.  People on both sides
are clearly dug in and there's nothing left to say.  I don't think it's
time to start talking seriously about a fork project, but it looks like
a sure bet at some point.  Though I think with the current size of the
Python base, we're talking about integer division - Python / 2 -> 0.

But that may only mean gradual extinction of Python in some of its
current roles, like for software that gets distributed sans interpreter.
If GvR & Co. actually get somewhere with the new Python and its target
audience, and Python3000 survives, it may still be attractive for
applications like prototyping.

I think the "tubes vs. transistors" lag in contemporary computing is the
difficulty of writing software in general in C/C++.  Storage model leads
to buffer overflows, segmentation faults etc., laborious implementation
requirements make it too hard to fix a design after it's first coded.
Software for alternative platforms tends to not exist.  Python could be
the revolution.  But that's no safer bet than the CP4E gamble, and maybe
the latter is better for Python anyway.  I'd like to see a language that
can make fast, self-contained compiled applications for the major platforms
and also interpret the same application on a new or obscure platform.

	Donn Cave, donn at u.washington.edu



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