Python advice

Ian Kelly ian.g.kelly at
Tue Sep 23 16:48:25 CEST 2014

On Mon, Sep 22, 2014 at 6:55 PM, Chris Angelico <rosuav at> wrote:
> Lua is a much simpler language than ECMAScript, incredibly
> light-weight, and easily sandboxed. It doesn't work with Unicode (I
> think its string type is eight-bit, so you have to work with encoded
> bytes), which is a serious downside in my opinion. Learn Lua if you
> want to work with something that embeds it. Otherwise, don't bother
> for now.

Apart from the Unicode issue, I'm curious what makes you describe it
as "much simpler" than ECMAScript.  Lua has coroutines built into the
language, stricter typing than ES (still not as strict as Python, but
at least you don't have to deal with a === operator because the ==
operator is broken), operator overloading, iterators, block-level
scoping, closure construction that binds loop variables the way the
programmer expects (unlike both Python and ES), and associative arrays
that allow arbitrary keys rather than coercing the keys to strings.

> * SQL is the one and only database query language you should ever need
> to bother with. (You might skip SQL too, if you use something like
> SQLAlchemy, but you certainly won't need any other query language -
> not in 2014.) It's well worth getting to know SQL at some point;
> whether you use Python, Pike, C, or any other language for the
> application, your SQL code will be the same.

SQLAlchemy lets you use SQL without actually writing SQL, but I would
argue that it's still basically necessary to understand SQL and what
the SQLAlchemy calls translate to in order to use it.

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