python-dev Summary for 2004-01-01 through 2004-01-31

Brett C. bac at OCF.Berkeley.EDU
Tue Feb 24 02:50:22 CET 2004

python-dev Summary for 2004-01-01 through 2004-01-31
This is a summary of traffic on the `python-dev mailing list`_ from 
January 1, 2004 through January 31, 2004.  It is intended to inform the 
wider Python community of on-going developments on the list.  To comment 
on anything mentioned here, just post to `comp.lang.python`_ (or email 
python-list at which is a gateway to the newsgroup) with a 
subject line mentioning what you are discussing. All python-dev members 
are interested in seeing ideas discussed by the community, so don't 
hesitate to take a stance on something.  And if all of this really 
interests you then get involved and join `python-dev`_!

This is the thirty-third and -fourth summaries written by Brett Cannon 
(who is rather fed up with being sick recently).

To contact me, please send email to brett at ; I do not have 
the time to keep up on comp.lang.python and thus do not always catch 
follow-ups posted there.

All summaries are archived at .

Please note that this summary is written using reStructuredText_ which 
can be found at .  Any unfamiliar 
punctuation is probably markup for reST_ (otherwise it is probably 
regular expression syntax or a typo =); you can safely ignore it, 
although I suggest learning reST; it's simple and is accepted for `PEP 
markup`_ and gives some perks for the HTML output.  Also, because of the 
wonders of programs that like to reformat text, I cannot guarantee you 
will be able to run the text version of this summary through Docutils_ 
as-is unless it is from the original text file.

.. _PEP Markup:

The in-development version of the documentation for Python can be found 
at and should be used when looking 
up any documentation on something mentioned here.  PEPs (Python 
Enhancement Proposals) are located at .  To 
view files in the Python CVS online, go to .  Reported bugs 
and suggested patches can be found at the SourceForge_ project page.

The `Python Software Foundation`_ is the non-profit organization that 
holds the intellectual property for Python.  It also tries to forward 
the development and use of Python.  But the PSF_ cannot do this without 
donations.  You can make a donation at .  Every penny helps so even a 
small donation (you can donate through PayPal or by check) helps.

.. _python-dev:
.. _SourceForge:
.. _python-dev mailing list:
.. _comp.lang.python:
.. _Docutils:
.. _reST:
.. _reStructuredText:
.. _PSF:
.. _Python Software Foundation:

.. contents::

.. _last summary:

Summary Announcements
Quick personal announcement/plea: I am looking for a summer 
job/internship.  If you happen to have a position at your company or 
happen to know of one somewhere **please** let me know at 
brett at .  I obviously know Python rather well, but I do know 
other languages.  I am quite willing to send you my resume and answer 
any questions you might have about experience, etc.  I would truly 
appreciate any help anyone can provide me in finding something for the 
summer.  I do have housing handled in the Los Angeles area and the 
Seattle/Bellevue area on top of the San Luis Obispo area, although I am 
willing to relocate for the summer.

Sorry about the lateness of this summary.  I realize this is going out 
when another one is already due.  Unfortunately, on top of needing to 
secure a summer job/internship and trying to get that dealt with, I also 
got strep throat that was rather horrid.  It was not fun to only be 
officially over pneumonia for a couple of weeks before I got sick again. 
  Rather frustrating since I haven't been this ill so often since I was 
a little kid.  And having to deal with school on top of being sick did 
not help matters.

In actual Python-related news, PyCon_ is still open for registration. 
If you haven't yet, go to and 
register!  Last year was a blast and I expect no less from this year (I 
am actually spending my Spring Break at PyCon I enjoyed myself so much 
last year).  Papers have been selected and it looks like we are going to 
have a great line-up of talks that cover the gamut of interests.  In 
other words I highly recommend attending if you can.

And even if you can't attend, if you are in the D.C. area, consider at 
least attending the first two days of the sprints which are the weekend 
preceding the conference (March 20-21).  More info on the sprints can be 
found at .

And now, on with the juicy stuff...

.. _PyCon:


Benchmarking is a go!
After Guido committed the parrotbench code to CVS, various people began 
to run the benchmark and post their scores.  If you are curious to see 
how your machine compares take a look at the contributing threads.

Contributing threadds:
   - `Pie-thon benchmark code ready 
   - `Re: Are we collecting benchmark results across machines 

Windows compilation moved to VC.NET
Martin v. Löwis converted the project files and anything else needed so 
that Python can now be compiled using VC.NET .  All of the previous 
files needed for compiling under VC 6 has been moved to PC/VC6 .

Contributing threads:
   - `Switch to VC.NET 7.1 completed 

Shutting Unicode errors up
Enough people have asked for the ability to silence Unicode errors that 
Martin v. Löwis suggested adding a module attribute in sys to specify 
whether Unicode errors should be ignored or not.  M.A. Lemburg, though, 
thought it was a bad idea and suggested instead that people use a custom 
codec that relaxed the error-handling.

the thread seemed to end with no changes planned.

Contributing threads:
   ` Relaxing Unicode error handling 

new PEPs (sorry, nothing witty came to me about PEPs that was not 
excruciatingly corny)
In all cases, ignore the Created date in terms of posting date; click on 
the Last Modified link if you care to see when the PEP was officially added.

`PEP 324`_ proposes a new module named popen5.  As suggested by the 
name, it hopes to come up with a unified module for process creation. 
To see Guido's initial response to the PEP and what he thinks is a 
"category killer" and why any new additions to the stdlib must be one, 
read .

`PEP 325`_ proposes a 'close' method for generators so as to handle what 
normally would be handled in a try/finally block (such as closing files 
and such).

`PEP 326`_ wants to add maximum and minimum singletons.  Guido rejected 
the PEP.  There is a complete implementation, though, with the PEP.

`PEP 327`_ is the long-awaited decimal type PEP that has been in the 
process of being refined for quite a while.  Development in the sandbox 
has been moving forward.

`PEP 328`_ is the 'import' PEP in terms of multi-line imports and 
dealing with relative imports.

.. _PEP 324:
.. _PEP 325:
.. _PEP 326:
.. _PEP 327:
.. _PEP 328:

Contributing threads:
   - `PEP 324: popen5 - New POSIX process module 
   - `New version of installer 
   - `prePEP "Decimal data type" v0.2 
   - `PEP 326 (quick location possibility) 
   - `PEP 327: Decimal Data Type 

Making Python and HP-UX friends again
Cameron Laird said he wanted to try to spear-head an attempt to get 
Python to compiled on HP-UX correctly.  In the past threading support 
has been out of the question and getting Tkinter to go has been an issue 
as well along with curses.  Cameron said he would like to get Python 
working for HP-UX as far back as version 10.20, although he said he 
would also be fine with the current 11.x versions.

Most of it seems to have to do with requiring tweaks to, 
Modules/Setup, and .  As of this exact second no patches have 
been added to SourceForge_.  You can get a version of Python 2.3.3 
compiled for HP-UX at .

This also led to a slight discussion of how slightly crufty 
is.  Any help bringing it up-to-date or cleaning up would be appreciated.

Contributing threads:
   - `HP-UX clean-up 

msi installer for Python 2.4
Going for the record of the person mentioned the largest number times in 
a single Summary who is not labeled a BDFL, Martin v. Löwis updated his 
msi installer for Python 2.4 .  It can be found at 
along with info on the installer at .

Contributing threads:
   - `New version of installer 
   - `Python MSI 

New collections module
Raymond Hettinger has created a new module called 'collections'.  It 
primary purpose is to be home to "high-performance container datatypes". 
  To start, it only has an implementation of deques.

Contributing threads:
   - `collections module 
   - `collections module (correction) 
   - `Collections 

CJKCodecs in 2.4
A perk of having Hye-Shik Chang an official developer of Python is 
getting his CJKCodecs integrated into Python 2.4 .

Contributing threads:
   - `CJKCodecs integration into Python 
   - `Oodles of warnings in cjkcodecs 

Statistics talk
Raymond Hettinger asked for some suggestions on a statistics module he 
was working on.  A whole bunch of stuff from names to algorithms to 
include came up.  There is now a module in the sandbox being worked on 
to implement what was discussed.

Contributing threads:
   - `Accumulation module 

Installer problems for MacPython-OS9
Jack Jansen told python-dev how he has not been able to distribute a 
version of MacPython-OS9 for Python 2.3.3 because the free license for 
the installer expired.  It was suggested that the PSF_ pay for a 
license.  If you think this is a good idea and you are a PSF member 
consider bringing the topic up at the general meeting to be held at PyCon_.

Contributing threads:
   - `No more releases of MacPython-OS9? 

Anyone want to maintain MacPython-OS9?
If anyone would like to take over maintenance of MacPython-OS9 so that 
it continues to exist beyond the 2.3 branch then contact Jack Jansen.

Contributing threads:
   - `PEP 11 mistake? 

Python in 2003
Go to to read AM Kuchling's report on 
what happened to Python in 2003.

Contributing threads:
   - `Python in 2003 summary 

Compiling using the free .NET SDK
If you wish to compile Python using the free .NET SDK then read the 
first email in the contributing thread thanks to someone named Garth.

Contributing threads:
   - `Compiling python with the free .NET SDK 

No dict.addlist() for you!
The idea of adding a method to dict called 'addlist(k,v)' that would act 
like ``d.setdefault(k, []).append(v)``.  It was eventually agreed upon 
that the perk of having it as a part of dict was not justified since the 
idiom it was implementing is simple enough so as to not really require 
adding the method.

Contributing threads:
   - `dict.addlist() 

Want to be able to change Python's name at compile time?
Jack Jansen asked what people thought of adding the ability of being 
able to specify the name of Python through 'configure' and have the 
permeate throughout the code.  The main reason for this is to allow 
people on OS X to be able to have other framework builds of Python that 
don't interfere with the installed version on OS X 10.3 .

The thread ended with no definitive decision as to whether to move ahead 
or not.

Contributing threads:
   - `Configure option to change Python's name? 

You think you are a Hotshot, huh?
Sparked by a question about where the development of the Hotshot 
profiler was, a new file was added to the scripts directory for making 
it easier to launch Hotshot for profiling.

Contributing threads:
   - `Hotshot 

Happy patch/bug statistics days are back again...
Kurt Kaiser has taken over for Skip Montanaro (thanks to both for 
continuing and starting this weekly email, respectively) for sending out 
the "Weekly Python Patch/Bug Summary" email.

Contributing threads:
   - `Weekly Python Patch/Bug Summary 

Change in posting rules to python-dev (but barely!)
The posting rules to python-dev have changed so that emails from 
non-subscribers must be ok'ed by moderators.  But joining python-dev is 
still open to the public and requires no clearance from anyone so it is 
not a big hurdle to overcome to post to the list.

You can always subscribe and turn mail delivery off if you like to. 
This is needed if you send mail to the list from multiple accounts such 
as yours truly.

Contributing threads:
   - `Proposed: change to posting rules for python-dev 

GPL code in Python core is not okay
Although the question was specific to python-mode.el, the general answer 
is that GPL code is not allowed into Python.  The clash of the GPL with 
the PSF license since the latter is BSD-style.

Contributing threads:
   - `Would GPL on python-mode.el be a problem? 

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