python a bust?

Steve Lamb grey at
Sat Nov 15 01:34:47 CET 2003

On 2003-11-14, Ben Finney <bignose-hates-spam at>
> What evidence do you have for this?

    What evidence do you have to the contrary?

> How do you account for contrary evidence, such as the evident thought
> processes of many (not least the OP of this thread) that "more books on X =>
> more interest in X => I should buy books on X"?

    Let me counter then.  I recently got a new job which, if I were to perform
to the expectations of the people who hired me, required me to learn two new
technologies I have been looking at for a while but have not yet touched.  PHP
and MySQL.  I spent 2 hours in the local Borders and B&N looking at PHP,
MySQL, PHP+MySQL books.  After looking at about a little over a dozen books
total guess how many I bought?

    2.  _Core PHP Programming_ and _Core MySQL_.  From what I could tell in
just a quick riffle through the pages those offered the best format for me to
learn from as well as use as a reference book.

    I also will not be buying any more books on PHP or MySQL for a while.
Why?  Because those, along with Sill's QMail book, topped $120 US Dollars.
Those books certainly did compete for my dollars and ~12 of them lost out.

    For the record Barnes & Noble had about 6 Python book on their shelves and
Borders about a dozen.  I didn't pick up any of them even though the only
Python book in my posession right now is Beazley's _Python Essential
Reference_ which I bought several years ago.  Why?  Because I know v2.3 is
just coming out and didn't want to get a book on v2.2 when the v1.5.2 book has
held me in good stead thusfar.

    Now that we've presented anecdotal evidence both both sides care to share
why you think that your way of thinking is the predominant one; IE more books
on the shelf means you're going to buy more books on that topic?  

         Steve C. Lamb         | I'm your priest, I'm your shrink, I'm your
       PGP Key: 8B6E99C5       | main connection to the switchboard of souls.

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