Typed Python?

Peter Hickman peter at semantico.com
Wed Jul 7 05:53:20 EDT 2004

Dominic wrote:
>> What reminds me that LISP was used to write Yahoo! Store first...
> I read this a couple of times now.
> What was so great about Yahoo-Store?

The use of Lisp allowed the original developers of the Yahoo stores to extend 
the functionality of the sites faster than their competitors and, when a 
competitor can up with a novel idea, do some easy feature matching.

The developers attributed their success to speed of development and said that it 
was Lisp that allowed them develop things so quickly. They also said that they 
only ever got nervous when they heard that a competitor was looking to develop 
in Python.

> Did they have a better design, a better architecture?

They never seemed to indicate that their architecture was anything special or 
that their competitors' was especially bad. Just that they could develop good 
code faster than their competitors.

> What did Yahoo!-Store prove?

That large, robust production systems could be developed in a dynamic language 
without being dragged down by poor performance. This went against the current 
ethos that said that dynamic languages were only any good for prototypes but you 
would have to convert to a real language (C, C++ or Java) because dynamic 
languages would not scale.

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