another newbie question

MRAB python at
Sun Nov 14 19:59:33 CET 2010

On 14/11/2010 16:40, Roy Smith wrote:
> In article<mailman.986.1289747396.2218.python-list at>,
>   David<bouncingcats at>  wrote:
>> On 15/11/2010, otenki<scott.stephens.j at>  wrote:
>>> When I enter 'from _future_ import division' at the command
>>> line, I get the ImportError, no module named _future_.
>> The module name is "__future__"
>> Notice that there are 2 underscore characters before the word "future"
>> and 2 after it. This is a common convention in python.
> I suppose the double-underscore convention was a questionable choice,
> given how many fixed width fonts make it difficult to discern the gap
> between them.  In fact, in most fonts, it's an intentional design goal
> that they run together (think of it as a sort of recurisive ligature).
> That being said, it is what it is, and isn't changing.
Guido chose double underscores because CPython is written in C and
that's what C uses. It's true that with hindsight it was a mistake...

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