PyWart: "Python's import statement and the history of external dependencies"

Chris Angelico rosuav at
Sat Nov 22 00:52:33 CET 2014

On Sat, Nov 22, 2014 at 10:21 AM, Rick Johnson
<rantingrickjohnson at> wrote:
> 1. Use the historical "implicit import" mechanism for most day
> to day imports, and let Python do all the heavy lifting.
> 2. Use the new "explicit import" mechanism for advanced name
> resolutions, but realize that since you are now taking
> control of import, so you must do more work, and you must be
> "exhaustively explicit" about *where* Python searches.

In other words, what you want is:

# today's method, import based on search path
import sys
# new explicit path method
import '/usr/local/lib/python3.5/lib-dynload/'

Can you tell me, please, how this is going to work for *any* system
other than the one it was built on? One of the reasons I write Python
code is because I expect it to work unchanged on Windows, Linux, Mac
OS, BSD, OS/2, uPy, and any other platform I care to throw it onto. If
I want to hard-code all the details, I might as well write C code and
at least take advantage of ./configure to work out the right paths for

There are a VERY VERY few cases where you really do want to import a
module from a specific file path. For those situations, there are
already techniques you can use. Why change the behaviour of import


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