Thursday, November 5, 2009

Guido van Rossum talks about Python 3

Yesterday Guido van Rossum came to Berkeley to talk about Python and science.

Listening to him, I understood for the first time the importance of porting to Python 3K.

Open-source is not the same as commercial software. If Microsoft puts out Vista, and we don't see the need to change, we just don't buy it. It's not the same for Python 3K.

For Python, we benefit from the enthusiasm and - yes - enjoyment - of the Python core team. We want them to enjoy what they do, we want to share their enjoyment of something well-done, well thought out. That's how good work gets done, and it's the energy of a project.

Python 3K is important, because it's important to the Python core team. It may not yet be obvious that we need it, but we should port, because it's important for Python.


  1. Python 3 completes the transition from old style classes (gone) to new style classes, from old style int/int (gone) to new style int/int, from ascii text (reborn as bytes) to unicode text, and (less completely) from lists (unchanged) to iterators as the default interchange format. Some other deprecated items were removed also.

    This makes the language more universial, smaller, easier to learn, and easier to maintain. As a user (without a 2.x code base to maintain or transition ;-), I am enthusiatic too.

  2. I like the argument. Although in my (short) experience with Python, jumping to the new version has proved a hasty and hazardous thing to do. I guess, a good start is using Python2.7 with the -3 flag that raises warnings about points of porting to Python3K...
    Thanks for the post!