Python-list digest, Vol 1 #12813 - 12 msgs

Terry Hancock hancock at
Sat Oct 19 08:08:46 CEST 2002

On Friday 18 October 2002 10:11 pm, python-list-request at wrote:
> Does anyone use Jython for serious applications? There is no Jython
> newsgroup that I can locate, so I wonder if Jython postings are ok here? I
> don't see to many of them.

Most of the users here are using C Python, but the Python part should be
the same regardless. Serious Jython discussion is available on a mailing
list -- go to and follow the mailing list links to sign
up for it.  Volume is moderate -- I think it's about 10 posts a day or so.

Jython specific questions are of course, really Java questions, since,
aside from a few very minor details the behavior of interpreted code
is going to be the same.

I have never made anything serious in Jython myself, though I did finally
manage to build a browser applet with it (basically "Hello world").  I'm
told by wiser prorammers than me that it would be very inefficient to 
do any serious applets this way because of the long download times.

On the other hand, the alternatives of programming in Javascript or
Java are unattractive (probably for no better reasons than personal
preference -- I prefer not having a huge number of different languages
in a project, and my server side is in Python).

Jython seems like the most transparent way to put Python on the client
side, and not being a Java programmer, this seems to me to be
Jython's main attraction.  Java enthusiasts, however, seem to find
this application irrelevant or trivial, and prefer to focus on the "huge array
of Java libraries" that are available (compared I presume to Python or
C, though I haven't found either that lacking, myself -- perhaps I
just have a limited set of needs?).

Making a specialized client that users must download and install isn't
an option for the projects I'm working on now, so I'm still considering
Jython for this application, despite the objections I've heard. Alternatively,
I could use Java itself, but I don't know it (yet), so using Jython to
script pre-existing classes seems more appropriate. I haven't gotten into
that phase of the project, though, so, other than a few simple tests, I
haven't done much with it.

Certainly some folks get very opinionated about the strengths and weaknesses
of Python versus Java -- to the point that some people are quite convinced
that one or the other is altogether unnecessary.  Clearly, if you believed 
that, Jython would be a poor or marginally useful option.  Jython's existence
implies a world in which Java and Python each have niches and can
effectively cooperate.  Some people seem to think that's true.

Sorry to ramble, but I haven't reached any definitive conclusions about
Jython -- I don't know if it's a "felicitous union" or an "illegitimate 
child" of Python and Java yet, but both appraisals seem to exist. :-)


Terry Hancock ( hancock at )
Anansi Spaceworks

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