Is Python your only programming language?

Discussion in 'Python' started by Ben Finney, Aug 12, 2003.

  1. Ben Finney

    Ben Finney Guest

    On Tue, 12 Aug 2003 05:44:45 GMT, Joe Cheng wrote:
    > many [...] have come to the conclusion that Java and Python are highly
    > complimentary languages.


    I think you mean "complementary"; I've never had a programming language
    compliment me on anything, though it'd make a nice change from all those
    error messages :)

    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python)
    > Or do you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what
    > is it?


    My professional programming these days is mostly sysadmin tool writing.
    Where I used to use 70% shell with 30% perl, these days I do 80% python
    with 20% shell. That probably reflects the ad-hoc, small-scope nature
    of the tools I write though.

    It also reflects the fact that I intend these tools to be maintainable
    by others who don't necessarily know the languages I use inside out. I
    would shudder to show a complex shell or perl script to a cow-orker, but
    my Python scripts are easily explainable -- one cow-orker has
    volunteered the comment that "it looks like pseudocode" :)

    > And finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all
    > practical intents and purposes, your only programming language?


    I do have several larger-scale programming projects in the back wings,
    and those will be written entirely in Python. (Waiting has gained me
    the incremental nice features of Python 2.3 :)

    --
    \ "I know when I'm going to die, because my birth certificate has |
    `\ an expiration date." -- Steven Wright |
    _o__) |
    Ben Finney <http://bignose.squidly.org/>
    Ben Finney, Aug 12, 2003
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. Ben Finney

    Joe Cheng Guest

    I'm curious about something... many Artima.com members who have a Java
    background and learned Python have come to the conclusion that Java and
    Python are highly complimentary languages. They would never consider
    filling the place Java has in their toolbox with Python, but recognize there
    are many tasks where it really pays to add Python to the mix.

    I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or do
    you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it? And
    finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical intents
    and purposes, your only programming language?
    Joe Cheng, Aug 12, 2003
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Ben Finney

    Markus Jais Guest

    Joe Cheng wrote:

    > I'm curious about something... many Artima.com members who have a Java
    > background and learned Python have come to the conclusion that Java and
    > Python are highly complimentary languages. They would never consider
    > filling the place Java has in their toolbox with Python, but recognize
    > there are many tasks where it really pays to add Python to the mix.
    >
    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or
    > do
    > you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it?
    > And finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical
    > intents and purposes, your only programming language?


    at work I use mainly java and C.

    at home when I programm for myself I normally use Python or Ruby.
    it depends on the libraries available. I like both and use both.

    I rarely use C or Java at home because with Python or Ruby I am much faster
    in developing a solution. and I never use C++ at home.

    and sometimes I play with PHP and Perl. just for fun.

    Markus
    Markus Jais, Aug 12, 2003
    #3
  4. Ben Finney

    Doug Tolton Guest

    On Tue, 12 Aug 2003 05:44:45 GMT, "Joe Cheng" <>
    wrote:

    >I'm curious about something... many Artima.com members who have a Java
    >background and learned Python have come to the conclusion that Java and
    >Python are highly complimentary languages. They would never consider
    >filling the place Java has in their toolbox with Python, but recognize there
    >are many tasks where it really pays to add Python to the mix.
    >
    >I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    >everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or do
    >you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it? And
    >finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical intents
    >and purposes, your only programming language?
    >

    I know Java, C, C#, C++, Visual Basic, Python, Asp and now I'm getting
    into Lisp and Scheme. I'm familiar with quite a few others, but these
    are the ones I'm most comfortable with.

    I write 90% of my code in python, maybe even 95%. I used to write
    everything in C#, but I found that most of the time I was writing a
    form that had buttons to push and a rich text box for output (at least
    at my current position).

    When we have to deploy an app with an ide we'll use either VB or C#,
    and put the guts in python com classes which are called from the ide.
    Python has great COM integration (much better than either C# or VB
    incidentally), so it makes it really easy.

    I do see a day when all my programming could be done in python
    (although more likely it will all be done in Lisp). There are a few
    things that need I need to learn how to do, but ultimately I believe
    all the major pieces are in place.

    - I need to learn wxPython or one of the variants on building good
    cross platform guis better.
    - I need to learn how to deploy apps to end users better
    - I need to learn one of the web based python systems.

    You'll note, these are all centered around technologies I need to
    learn better, not techonlogies that need to be done still.

    As for an IDE, I already have one, it's call Emacs.
    Debugger, I just use pdb (althouh I wish it had, or I knew how to do
    Edit and Continue)
    Doug Tolton, Aug 12, 2003
    #4
  5. Joe Cheng wrote:

    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python)


    yes.

    > And finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical
    > intents and purposes, your only programming language?


    has been, since 1995.

    </F>
    Fredrik Lundh, Aug 12, 2003
    #5
  6. Ben Finney

    Max M Guest

    Joe Cheng wrote:

    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or do
    > you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it? And
    > finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical intents
    > and purposes, your only programming language?



    I used to learn a new language a year. But i'm afraid that python has
    made me lazy. It sort of killed the natural itch to learn new languages
    by removing the little anoyances I used to have when programming.

    So now I start up my editor in Python mode like a mindless zombie. It
    has even gotten to the point that I use it for calculations instead of a
    spreadsheet and pocket calculator.

    But to keep up to date language wise I will look into other languages
    again someday soon. I swear. hmm!



    regards Max M
    Max M, Aug 12, 2003
    #6
  7. In news:,
    Erik Max Francis <> wrote:

    > Joe Cheng wrote:
    >
    >> I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    >> everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python)
    >> Or do
    >> you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is
    >> it? And
    >> finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical
    >> intents
    >> and purposes, your only programming language?

    >
    > I get paid to write C++ or C, use Python for recreational projects,
    > and use shell, Python, or (rarely) Perl for administration tasks. For
    > recreation and exploration I play around with a variety of other
    > languages, including Io, APL/J, Logo, Prolog, Scheme, and so on.


    I use Python for most of my projects, but for web I use PHP. I also have some
    knowledge of C++ (but very limited), and I am planning on expanding that
    knowledge soon. I started learning C++ before Python, but when I saw Python, I
    paused learning C++ and turned to Python.

    Python can suit most of the programming needs today, but not all. It has
    limitations, just as any other programming language and I think there will
    always be cases where using some other programming language will be more
    efficient or more suitable for some projects.

    As for me, personally, Python suits my needs even now, as I am not some
    advanced programmer, but I suppose I will see some limitations and downsides as
    I progress.

    I also play around with Visual Basic with my friend a bit when we're at school,
    but he knows VB way better than I do.

    --

    Greets,
    Nikola
    ( http://zweistein.cjb.net )
    Nikola Plejic, Aug 12, 2003
    #7
  8. Ben Finney

    Van Gale Guest

    From my point of view (writing system applications, servers, web apps)
    Python and Java fill the same space, which is one reason I don't know
    much Java.

    I used to use perl + shell for sysadmin type stuff, but now use Python
    exclusively for that (well... maybe some shell still for really really
    short scripts).

    So, the only other language I really use is C (and not just for writing
    extensions).

    There are some areas where I would consider other languages, For
    example I would consider using Delphi for Windows GUI apps. For Linux
    GUI apps I might consider Objective C just for something different, but
    most likely would choose Python and either Qt or GTK bindings.
    Van Gale, Aug 12, 2003
    #8
  9. Ben Finney

    Carl Banks Guest

    Joe Cheng wrote:
    > I'm curious about something... many Artima.com members who have a Java
    > background and learned Python have come to the conclusion that Java and
    > Python are highly complimentary languages. They would never consider
    > filling the place Java has in their toolbox with Python, but recognize there
    > are many tasks where it really pays to add Python to the mix.
    >
    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or do
    > you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it? And
    > finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical intents
    > and purposes, your only programming language?



    For me, it's almost 100% Python + C extensions. Even the C extensions
    are getting dubious: for my current project, I took the time to write
    a C code generator in Python.

    I use a smattering of Bourne Shell and Mathematica for their intended
    purposes. I often used Fortran in research work and a few other
    things. I use Java when I want to make an applet (rarely).

    Any other language I use is either for fun, or to keep my programming
    skills sharp.


    --
    CARL BANKS
    "You don't run Microsoft Windows. Microsoft Windows runs you."
    Carl Banks, Aug 12, 2003
    #9
  10. Ben Finney

    Peter Hansen Guest

    Joe Cheng wrote:
    >
    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or do
    > you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it?


    We do web, systems/application, and embedded programming (that's the kind of
    thing where you have a little 16-bit micro with 1K of RAM to play with, nothing
    to do with "embedding and extending" ala Python). The web work is all
    Python (back end) plus a tiny bit of Javascript. The systems/app work is
    all Python. The embedded stuff is part Python, on the larger embedded
    system which can handle it, and part C, on the tiny micros where Python
    has no hope, plus a few hundred lines of Assembly code.

    On a day-to-day basis, over 95% of what we do is Python.

    > And finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all
    > practical intents and purposes, your only programming language?


    No, unless we abandon all embedded programming. But if you exclude
    that special area, where basically little but C has a foothold, and
    you exclude the client-side web stuff where Javascript is the only
    serious option, then we are already using Python as our *only* language,
    and I have no intention of letting that change any time soon. There
    is a *huge* benefit, often much underestimated, in maintaining only
    a small set of technologies, including the programming languages a
    company/individual actually uses (as opposed to those it knows of).

    -Peter
    Peter Hansen, Aug 12, 2003
    #10
  11. Ben Finney

    c42 Guest

    After college I started using VB & VBA for most of my bigger projects
    and Winbatch for my system admin stuff. However, as my current company
    has started to move more of its servers to Linux, I'm programming almost
    exclusively in Python.

    In the past I've used Komodo and found it to be very nice tool, but I'm
    also keeping an eye on Boa Constructor with its advances as well.



    In article <h9%Za.8225$>,
    says...
    > I'm curious about something... many Artima.com members who have a Java
    > background and learned Python have come to the conclusion that Java and
    > Python are highly complimentary languages. They would never consider
    > filling the place Java has in their toolbox with Python, but recognize there
    > are many tasks where it really pays to add Python to the mix.
    >
    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or do
    > you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it? And
    > finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical intents
    > and purposes, your only programming language?
    >
    >
    >
    c42, Aug 12, 2003
    #11
  12. Ben Finney

    Harry George Guest

    "Joe Cheng" <> writes:

    > I'm curious about something... many Artima.com members who have a Java
    > background and learned Python have come to the conclusion that Java and
    > Python are highly complimentary languages. They would never consider
    > filling the place Java has in their toolbox with Python, but recognize there
    > are many tasks where it really pays to add Python to the mix.
    >
    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or do
    > you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it? And
    > finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical intents
    > and purposes, your only programming language?
    >
    >


    In the past I've written C, C++, Java, Lisp, Modula-2, Modula-3,
    Pascal, Perl, and Prolog for pay. I've dabbled in a dozen others.
    All of these are drifting away as Python takes center stage at home
    and at work. I personally haven't written in anything else for over a
    year. I also used it through a recent MSCS degree. Of course, I'm
    dependent on extensions written in C, C++, and Fortran, plus CORBA,
    COM, etc. communication protocols.

    What uses?

    Some sysadmin scripts, lots of "glueware" reader/writer adaptors and
    automation for COTS apps, lots of code which needs to be portable
    across *NIX and Win** platforms. Usually need Numeric and XML, some
    SQL, CGI wrappers, etc.

    At home I recently wrote a morse code tutor by reimplementing
    algorithms (e.g., bit-twiddling to generate pcm) from an OSS package.
    Once it worked at all, I changed the algorithm to cache preprocessed
    sin approximations (profiling showed I needed the speedup). Then I
    enhanced to the functionality of commercial packages. Then added
    features (autogenerated QSO's) which I don't think are available
    anywhere else. All in a weekend.

    How did I get there?

    I really liked Modula-3's static and dynamic typing system. Other
    static typing systems I've tried pale by comparison. With Python and
    good test suites, I don't seem to miss the static typing, and it is
    vastly easier to generate working code. I also liked Modula-3's
    syntax and namespace system. Python's syntax is cleaner and the
    namespaces are simpler-yet-adequately-powerful. (Not too surprising,
    given Python's origins)

    I used to be a champion for and an instructor for Perl. I still do
    code reviews on Perl scripts written by others (shudder). I do not
    agree sysadmins will stay with Perl over Python. There is a learning
    curve, but the needed functionality is there. We are finding in
    complex mixed platform environments, it is easier to install (and
    upgrade) Python than Perl. Python is readable by people other than
    the original author (important in an era of layoffs and doubling up).
    Python is readable by the original author even after being away for
    months at a time.

    We found we could replace c. 100 LOC of Prolog with a few lines of
    python when we needed regex's and other string manipulation. We are
    finding we can do Lisp-style programming in Python (lazy evaluation,
    mixins, etc.). We find that Python is "a better VB than VB" for
    scripting COTS apps via COM. We found python took 1/3 fewer LOC (and
    was a lot cleaner) than Java for a geometry task (lots of matrixes and
    netlist traversals).

    I've yet to look seriously at C#. My primariy concern is "does it
    support open source cross-platform development and implementation"?
    As long as it fails that test (e.g., until Mono is fully approved by
    Microsoft), I'll stick with a known winner.

    --

    6-6M31 Knowledge Management
    Phone: (425) 342-5601
    Harry George, Aug 12, 2003
    #12
  13. (Grant Edwards) wrote in message news:<3f38fbf3$0$158$>...

    > Anybody who thinks there's only one programming
    > language for all tasks is seriously deluded.


    Yes, but a programmer does not necessarily need to perform ALL tasks.
    It may very well be that Python fullfill 99% of what an average
    programmer needs. I personally know various languages, but at the
    end I only use Python since it fullfills all my needs and it is
    faster to develop in it that in any other language.

    Michele
    Michele Simionato, Aug 12, 2003
    #13
  14. In article <>, Michele Simionato wrote:

    >> Anybody who thinks there's only one programming language for
    >> all tasks is seriously deluded.

    >
    > Yes, but a programmer does not necessarily need to perform ALL
    > tasks.


    Good point. I forget that others jobs may be more narrowly
    defined than mine. Not everybody has to range from embedded
    assembly language, to GUI apps, to Linux drivers, to CGI, to
    ASP.

    > It may very well be that Python fullfill 99% of what an average
    > programmer needs. I personally know various languages, but at
    > the end I only use Python since it fullfills all my needs and
    > it is faster to develop in it that in any other language.


    --
    Grant Edwards grante Yow! What a
    at COINCIDENCE! I'm an
    visi.com authorized "SNOOTS OF THE
    STARS" dealer!!
    Grant Edwards, Aug 12, 2003
    #14
  15. Ben Finney

    Jarek Zgoda Guest

    Joe Cheng <> pisze:

    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything? (and I'm counting Python + C extensions as just Python) Or do
    > you keep another language equally close at hand, and if so, what is it? And
    > finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical intents
    > and purposes, your only programming language?


    I learn new programming language each year. During last 10 years I
    learned 10 languages -- only in few of them I wrote more than exercises,
    these are Python, RPG and REXX, sorted descending. Python is most
    amusing and fun part of my work, I use it whenever it is possible and
    has any sign of advantage over any other languages but I will never try
    to use Python to write interactive application on OS/400. There is
    RPG/400 for this and other platforms have other tasks that are better
    accomplished in other ways than Python.

    But I'll continue to love Python until somebody invents something more
    amazing. Which looks impossible now, but remember, 10 years ago mr Gates
    said, that 640KB seems to be enough for everybody. ;)

    --
    Jarek Zgoda
    Registered Linux User #-1
    http://www.zgoda.biz/ JID: http://zgoda.jogger.pl/
    Jarek Zgoda, Aug 12, 2003
    #15
  16. Ben Finney

    John Machin Guest

    Ben Finney <> wrote in message news:<>...

    >
    > It also reflects the fact that I intend these tools to be maintainable
    > by others who don't necessarily know the languages I use inside out. I
    > would shudder to show a complex shell or perl script to a cow-orker, but
    > my Python scripts are easily explainable -- one cow-orker has
    > volunteered the comment that "it looks like pseudocode" :)
    >


    How does one "ork" and what is the effect on the cow? What is the
    RSPCA's attitude to this?
    John Machin, Aug 12, 2003
    #16
  17. Ben Finney

    Larry Guest

    "Joe Cheng" <> wrote in message news:<h9%Za.8225$>...
    > I'm curious about something...


    At work I'm now at about 90% Python and the rest a mix of Visual Basic
    and Java. Almost anything new gets done in Python, with Java for
    applets (blah) and the VB mainly just maintenance on existing VB crap.

    At home I'm currently about 40% Unreal Tournament 2003 and 60% Civ
    III.
    Larry, Aug 12, 2003
    #17
  18. Ben Finney

    Jarek Zgoda Guest

    Larry <> pisze:

    > At home I'm currently about 40% Unreal Tournament 2003 and 60% Civ
    > III.


    I'm 100% Steel Panthers World At War 7.1 and I clearly see, that
    pythonic tactics makes me winner in most of cases. ;)

    Thanks God, I have wife that allows me run "unknown binaries" on her W2K
    box. And she has 80GB HDD, just enough for all our collected music.

    --
    Jarek Zgoda
    Registered Linux User #-1
    http://www.zgoda.biz/ JID: http://zgoda.jogger.pl/
    Jarek Zgoda, Aug 12, 2003
    #18
  19. Ben Finney

    Rich Guest

    "John Machin" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >
    > How does one "ork" and what is the effect on the cow? What is the
    > RSPCA's attitude to this?


    There is a page on orking here: http://www.monkeon.co.uk/orking/

    The RSPCA is fine with it....

    see ya,
    Rich.
    (formerly of JMI in Carlton, way back when Colonial had it. :)
    Rich, Aug 12, 2003
    #19
  20. Ben Finney

    Alan Gauld Guest

    On Tue, 12 Aug 2003 05:44:45 GMT, "Joe Cheng" <>
    wrote:
    > I want to ask you hard-core c.l.p Pythonistas: Do you use Python for
    > everything?


    I'm not sure I'm "hard core" but I use Python most days.
    However most projects I work on use many programming
    languages - I think the record was 12 languages on 1 project.
    An average is probably around 5.

    I use Python mainly for prototyping and proof of concept work
    during design, the results get turned into C++, Java, COBOL
    or assembler depending on the project.

    In theory we could use Python for an embedded scripting language
    but Tcl and VBScript have already grabbed that slot in our
    corporate armoury...

    > finally, do you foresee a day when Python can be, for all practical intents
    > and purposes, your only programming language?


    Nope, there will always be places where I want to use Lisp or
    Prolog. Even awk is better for some things. And when the code
    really gets down n' dirty nothing beats raw C and assembler...

    Alan G.
    Author of the Learn to Program website
    http://www.freenetpages.co.uk/hp/alan.gauld
    Alan Gauld, Aug 12, 2003
    #20
    1. Advertising

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. Jimmy Retzlaff
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    305
  2. Replies:
    5
    Views:
    363
    Dennis Lee Bieber
    Aug 16, 2003
  3. DaveInSidney
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    411
    DaveInSidney
    May 9, 2005
  4. Casey Hawthorne
    Replies:
    4
    Views:
    995
    Jarek Zgoda
    Aug 4, 2006
  5. Suganya
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    443
    Suganya
    Apr 29, 2008
Loading...

Share This Page