A critic of Guido's blog on Python's lambda

Ken Tilton kentilton at gmail.com
Sat May 6 04:44:59 CEST 2006

Alex Martelli wrote:
> Ken Tilton <kentilton at gmail.com> wrote:
>    ...
>>But the key in the whole thread is simply that indentation will not 
>>scale. Nor will Python.
> Absolutely.  That's why firms who are interested in building *seriously*
> large scale systems, like my employer (and supplier of your free mail
> account), would never, EVER use Python, nor employ in prominent
> positions such people as the language's inventor and BDFL, the author of
> the most used checking tool for it, and the author of the best-selling
> reference book about that language; and, for that matter, a Director of
> Search Quality who, while personally a world-renowned expert of AI and
> LISP, is on record as supporting Python very strongly, and publically
> stating its importance to said employer.
> Obviously will not scale.  Never.
> Well... hardly ever!

You are talking about being incredibly popular. I was talking about 
language expressivity. COBOL in its day was incredibly popular and 
certainly the language of choice (hell, the only language) for the 
biggest corporations you can imagine. But it did not scale as a 
language. I hope there are no doubts on that score (and I actually am a 
huge fan of COBOL).

The problem for Python is its success. meant to be a KISS scripting 
language, it has caught on so well that people are asking it to be a 
full-blown, OO, GC, reflexive, yada, yada, yada language. Tough to do 
when all you wanted to be when you grew up was a scripting language.

kenny (who is old enough to have seen many a language come and go)

Cells: http://common-lisp.net/project/cells/

"Have you ever been in a relationship?"
    Attorney for Mary Winkler, confessed killer of her
    minister husband, when asked if the couple had
    marital problems.

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