Where is Python in the scheme of things?

Bruno Desthuilliers onurb at xiludom.gro
Thu Oct 5 10:13:43 CEST 2006

gord wrote:
> As a complete novice in the study of Python, I am asking myself where this 
> language is superior or better suited than others. For example, all I see in 
> the tutorials are lots of examples of list processing, arithmetic 
> calculations - all in a DOS-like environment.

s/DOS-like/command line/

The command line interface is widely used on unix-like systems, and is
very handy for a lot of things.

> What is particularly disappointing is the absence of a Windows IDE, 
> components and an event driven paradigm. 

Disappointing ? Python is a general-purpose, cross-platform language,
not a Windows-only GUI-only environment. What you're looking for does
exist, but as 3rd part libs and programs. You could check Boa
Constructor (a wxPython based Delphi-like RAD/IDE), or any combination
of a Windows-compatible GUI toolkit / GUI builder / IDE.

> How does Python stand relative to 
> the big 3, namely Visual C++, Visual Basic and Delphi?

Ever tried writing a cross-platform web application server with any of
these "big 3" ?

> I realize that these 
> programming packages are quite expensive 

and Windows-only, and proprietary...

> now while Python is free 

free as in "free beer", yes, but also free as in "free speech". And
Python is portable too (most of my programs would run on Windows or
MacOS X or BSD etc without any modification).

> (at least 
> for the package I am using - ActivePython).

> Please discuss where Python shines.

Application programming and admin scripts. Note that application
programming doesn't imply GUI - I'm mostly doing web development FWIW.

Now if you're doing Windows-only, Python is quite good with COM/ActiveX
etc AFAIK.

bruno desthuilliers
python -c "print '@'.join(['.'.join([w[::-1] for w in p.split('.')]) for
p in 'onurb at xiludom.gro'.split('@')])"

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