does python have useless destructors?

Peter Hansen peter at
Mon Jun 14 17:27:11 CEST 2004

David Turner wrote:

> I *want* to spend more time in Python, but as things stand my C++ code
> is more robust.

Is this a theoretical definition of "robust", or a practical one?
In other words, do you mean you Python code actually fails more
often than your C++ code, or do you just mean that, theoretically,
the uncertainty with Python destructors makes you feel that your
Python code is less reliable?

In my experience, and I know also the experience of *many* others,
our Python programs are very much *more* reliable than our C++
programs.  In fact, I've rarely if ever had a Python program that
failed in any way related to Python's destructor behaviour.  On
the other hand, I've rarely if ever had a C++ program which did
not crash my entire system at least once during development...


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