The Ideals of a Python Hacker (was: Poll Results)

Roy Katz katz at
Fri Nov 30 07:10:44 CET 2001

On Fri, 30 Nov 2001, Jonathan Gardner wrote:

> Interesting... how does Python and veganism go together? Isn't veganism just 
> about taking care of the animals and your body? What does Python care about 
> the animals or your body?

Well I feel that the common theme among all these ideas is control.  I
want more control than the average Joe over things like how I speak
(Esperanto can be quite expressive), program (python), compute (GPL), and
eat (that's why I'm vegan).  Moreover, Python, Esperanto, GPL and Veganism
(imho) are all particularly *effective* solutions to their respective
problems.  They're elegant, consistent and simple in philosophy.  That's
about it.  That makes sense to me; and to paraphrase your words, I tend to
"go with what works" for me :). I'll stop ranting now (otherwise, too many
people start cracking vegetarian jokes and miss the point -- really, how
long till someone here'll crack a joke... come on guys, don't keep me
waiting, you know you're out there).

> Python and Esperanto: Esperanto was invented for being a useful, simple 
> language that could be learned by almost any culture. 


> It tried to limit the 
> number of expressions for a single idea, making it difficult to express 
> things that may not be understood or misunderstood.


I would phrase it like this: Esperanto tries to make it easier to express
ideas which are hard to express in other languages.  But there /are/
indeed different ways of expressing the same idea. 

And why should Python be any different?? Sure there is only one way to
open a file (open()) and (up until recently, borkborkbork>>) one way
to write to a file.  BUT the fact that we can express a convolution 
integrals in a myriad of ways should be proof enough that even though
syntax is singular, the expression of the idea is indeed plural. 

> Python. English and Perl (TMTOWTDI), and Esperanto and Python.
oh definately, I agree 100% on that. 

> They'd have to be. I can't seem to find a place to get paid to work in Python 
> yet. I can't imagine a guy with 3 kids trying to make a living by programming 
> python unless he is the rare guy that has a job in it.

hey, Google offers jobs for Python programmers on Linux
workstations.. :)

> Reminds me of the Perl community at first. They were all young, once. Young 
> rebels, challenging the C/awk/sed paradigm. Young rebels, willing to write a 
> bit of glue code in a young language developed by a young sysadmin...
> Now some of them look like they are advancing in years, and the Perl 
> community is almost as mainstream as it gets in programming fads.

well they got lax imho.  Two many bolted on features, just like Python a 
year from now if everyone and their dog has their way (borkborkbork>>). 


obnoxious Computer Engineering junior
University of Maryland @ College Park,

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