Compare Python with Perl for QA purpose

Cameron Laird claird at
Sat Jan 4 19:05:44 CET 2003

In article <mailman.1041696487.26472.python-list at>,
Bjorn Pettersen <BPettersen at> wrote:
>> From: Amol Sonaikar [mailto:amol at] 
>> Hi all
>> I am using Python to test the Our created  Command Line 
>> Interface. I would 
>> like to know whether Python will be better option to work on 
>> it or Perl. I 
>> guess the python users can very well elaborate on it.
>Isn't this the canonical use case for Expect, i.e. Tcl? Python has of
>course developed features in that direction to, although still not quite
>as polished from what I understand (never used them myself, i.e. this is
>hearsay <wink>). In any case, your question should probably be: "Is
>either Perl or Python close enough to Tcl/Expect functionality to test
>our CLI and do they have other properties that would make up for any
>lack of specific features?" The answer, of course, depends on what your
>requirements are...
>just-my-0.02-etc-etc'ly y'rs
>-- bjorn

Expect <URL: > is indeed the canon-
ical answer for test automation <URL: http:// >.

I'm expert in Expect, and a big fan.  HOWEVER, its advantages
over Perl and Python are commonly overestimated (and underesti-
mated, in other directions, but that's a different story).
There are many QA situations where Expect has no significant
advantage over Perl and Python.

Mr. Petersen is also right in emphasizing that "QA of command-
line interface" leaves a lot of free variables.  At some point,
Mr. Sonaikar will need to decide whether a GUI for his automa-
tions is an advantage, whether his "Command Line Interface" 
does tty-mangling, what kind of portability he requires, what
synchronicity, concurrency, and timing issues he has, and so on.

General summary:  Python and Perl are roughly equally well suited
to the broad domain of QA.

Cameron Laird <Cameron at>

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