PyGUI as a standard GUI API for Python?

M.-A. Lemburg mal at
Thu Sep 4 12:15:16 CEST 2008

On 2008-09-04 11:14, Kay Schluehr wrote:
> On 4 Sep., 10:31, "M.-A. Lemburg" <m... at> wrote:
>> On 2008-09-04 07:49, Kay Schluehr wrote:
>>> 3) Following the public rumor mill and the latest hype RIA i.e. the
>>> merge of web- and desktop applications with systems like Adobe AIR,
>>> JavaFX, Google Gears and MS Silverlight is the future of frontend
>>> development. With the exception of IronPython and Silverlight, Python
>>> hasn't even entered this game and no one knows if it ever will.
>> Actually, it has already and quite some time ago:
>> The recipe is simple: use Python for the business logic, database
>> interfacing, etc and have it talk to a Flex front-end via XML-RPC
>> or REST.
> Python is still server-side in this scenario and plays no role in UI
> definitions.

That depends on how you design the application. It is well possible
to have Python drive the GUI by sending the required details to
the Flex front-end via XML (ie. data-driven GUIs).

> So one doesn't get more than e.g. Django apps that
> respond to HTTP requests triggered by JavaScript forms except that
> JavaScript+HTML+Browser is replaced by Flex = AS3+MXML+FlashPlayer.

You really can't compare the Flex stack to an AJAX stack. Flex
has a lot more to offer for GUI programming than AJAX, it also
doesn't suffer from the problems of AJAX having to support several
different sets of browser or library bugs.

We switched from an AJAX approach to a Flex-based approach last year
and never even considered moving back again.

> The role of Python is somewhat arbitrary. This could change only if
> Python becomes a client side language executed by AVM, V8 etc. like
> IronPython in Silverlight.
> About separating UI from application logics by assigning functionality
> to different general purpose languages I have to admit that I don't
> think it is such a great idea ...

In my experience, Flex + Python gives you the best of both worlds,
the nice GUI features of Flex and the efficiency of Python for the
business logic.

A long time ago, there was a Python plugin for Netscape
which allowed you to run Python straight in the browser. Perhaps
it's time to revive such an idea... but then you're still missing
out on the GUI part, since you're still stuck with what the
browser has to offer in terms of widget support.

Marc-Andre Lemburg

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