How do you develop in Python?

Neil Hodgson nhodgson at
Tue Jun 12 11:46:48 CEST 2001

Nick Perkins:

> With all apologies to those who developed these FREE IDE's...
> (it is not fair to complain about free software, and that is
> not my intention here -- I am sure that I could not do any
> better)..

   But if there weren't any complaints, then we wouldn't know what to fix

> SciTe seems interesting, but I haven't figured out how to
> configure it, yet, and util I do, it's useless.  (me being lazy,
> but still...)

   SciTE is the dumbest on your list, not attempting to be a debugger at all
and just executing a Python file in an external process and piping the
output into a window.

> I want an IDE to provide at least the following:
> 1. Each run takes place in a fresh, clean environment.
> 2. The IDE stays responsive while a program is run.
> 3. The IDE can kill a running program.

   These are fairly easy although chances of a process kill differs between
OS versions.

> Is it not possible to start a 'fresh' interpreter for each run?  Or is
> not actually desirable for some reason?  Would that make it impossible to
> kill it or get tracebacks, etc?  Do we need a Python IDE that does not run
> itself in Python?

   What is hard if Python is run out of process is to performing debugging
operations such as single stepping and examining variables.

> ( i guess SciTE doesn't....maybe I'll give that another go..)

   Go on, but I bet you'll want a real debugger after a short period and
that is something I'm unlikely to find the time to add to SciTE.

> BTW, which free IDEs are currently being maintained and improved?
> How much work is being done, and how many people are doing it?
> ( keep up the good work!, if this means you!)

   SciTE gets lots of additions but there is not much quality control so at
any time several of the features are sure to work strangely. Boa is alive
but progressing slowly. PythonWin doesn't see much improvement as Mark is
very busy with a lot of work including Komodo.

   PythonWin could be fairly easily made to have an option to run programs
in another process but not allowing debugging. With open source though, its
a matter of someone being sufficiently motivated (or annoyed) to invest the


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