getting back into programming

Gabriel Genellina gagsl-py2 at
Wed Dec 10 22:44:51 CET 2008

En Wed, 10 Dec 2008 19:02:16 -0200, <usawargamer at> escribió:

> I used to program in C and Perl (up until 2001) (a little C++ and Java
> too).  Since then I've been a Business Analyst and only coded in VBA/
> Excel and written some SQL queries.  (we use Sybase)
> I feel the need for other tools.
> Primarily I want to write a bunch of small programs to query a
> database and perform some calculations.   While I can do this inside a
> Sybase stored procedure, its a bit messy trying to "reimplement" a set
> of calculations from Excel into Sybase.
> I would like to either:
> - relearn Perl
> or
> - learn Python (I have heard its a nice language)

I prefer Python over Perl because of its legibility (it's way more clear  
than Perl!), expressiveness (there is no big difference between "what I  
want" and "what I write"). (Anyway, I think most people here would say  
they like Python...)

> 1. How good and easy to use is the Python database interface (to
> Sybase)?

Most database modules implement DBAPI 2.0, the Python standard API for  
database connectivity, see
Migrating from one database to another, if you stick to the API, may have  
little or no impact on your application.

The first hit on Google for "python sybase" points to the python-sybase  
project on Sourceforge, which claims to be DBAPI 2 compliant, but I've  
never used it.

> 2. Can you suggest some good books, and/or links for learning Python,
> as well as teh database interface?

If you had some programming experience then Dive into Python would be a good choice

> 3. How difficult is it to install Python vs Perl on PC/Windows
> machines?

Both, almost zero effort, just run the installer.

Gabriel Genellina

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