What is Python good for?

Andrei Kulakov sill at optonline.net
Fri Sep 14 13:05:02 CEST 2001

On 12 Sep 2001 06:41:21 -0700, Steve <stevesusenet at yahoo.com> wrote:
> I heard about Python briefly a few years ago when I just got out of
> school and started programming professionally.
> Now that I have a good command of some other languages and I see that
> there is a windows port of Python I am thinking about learning it.
> Why should I?
> By that, I mean most languages try to do it all, but they usually end
> up having unique strengths in some areas that draw users to it.
> Java is great for server side programming.  Perl is easy, and has a
> lot of built in features for text processing.  Visual Basic makes
> generating windows client app interfaces very fast.

Here's a minimalistic answer:

Python is somewhere between perl and java. It's easier to learn than perl,
more readable and has a cleaner design. It also has more of a lean toward
writing larger programs, whereas perl is best for writing fairly short

Python is great for learning programming quickly and easily. And I don't
mean some specific task like parsing text or cgi, but general approach,
design, modularization, OOP, etc. That's where it's best.

It's also very good if you want a language that's acceptable in many
fields - that is, instead of becoming an expert in C++ for writing GUI
apps and in PHP for writing CGIs, you may learn python alone and do both.

IOW, if you don't want to dedicate yourself to some niche exclusively, a
general language like python is a natural choice.


> Where does Python fall short?

There's very few jobs, compared to python or java. If you want to use your
knowledge of python to find employment, you'll probably have to wait an
unknown number of years until it becomes more popular in the market place.
If, however, you just want to become a good programmer (and then learn
another 'marketable' language) or simply want a tool that would help you
with job(s) you already have, it's a very good choice. 

- Andrei 

Cymbaline: intelligent learning mp3 player - python, linux, console.
get it at: cy.silmarill.org

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