Python is a gem ,another successful day ....

Discussion in 'Python' started by Graeme Matthew, Jul 6, 2003.

  1. Hi all I previously made a post (
    Python is a gem, you need to keep pushing it ....)

    about how impressed I was with python and how im suign it in a proposed
    commercial app.

    Got a call on Friday a company with a very succesfull product in Visual
    Basic (Front End) SQL (Backend) wanted to move from Microsoft products due
    to all the problems with MDAC (ADO etc), XP networking issues .... and
    concerns with microsofts control ///

    Well after three hours looks like Python (and linux and mysql) may have won
    again, explained perl (semantic nightmare but a great language) , ruby
    (great language but lack of libraries) etc, Vb's weaknesses and the need for
    vendor neutrality anyway, as things move ill put some updates on here ...
    and tell you ho it goes, ....

    Hey, im trying very hard to promote it :)

    Cheers
     
    Graeme Matthew, Jul 6, 2003
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. Graeme Matthew

    Steve Holden Guest

    Graeme:

    Congratulations!

    I'd be interested in knowing some of the arguments you used to win over VB,
    as I've been asked to put a couple of articles together suggesting why VB
    users might consider switching to Python.

    regards
    --
    Steve Holden http://www.holdenweb.com/
    Python Web Programming http://pydish.holdenweb.com/pwp/


    "Graeme Matthew" <> wrote in message
    news:ECUNa.628$...
    > Hi all I previously made a post (
    > Python is a gem, you need to keep pushing it ....)
    >
    > about how impressed I was with python and how im suign it in a proposed
    > commercial app.
    >
    > Got a call on Friday a company with a very succesfull product in Visual
    > Basic (Front End) SQL (Backend) wanted to move from Microsoft products due
    > to all the problems with MDAC (ADO etc), XP networking issues .... and
    > concerns with microsofts control ///
    >
    > Well after three hours looks like Python (and linux and mysql) may have

    won
    > again, explained perl (semantic nightmare but a great language) , ruby
    > (great language but lack of libraries) etc, Vb's weaknesses and the need

    for
    > vendor neutrality anyway, as things move ill put some updates on here ...
    > and tell you ho it goes, ....
    >
    > Hey, im trying very hard to promote it :)
    >
    > Cheers
    >
    >
    >
    >
     
    Steve Holden, Jul 6, 2003
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Graeme Matthew

    Ray Smith Guest

    "Steve Holden" <> wrote in message news:<am0Oa.461715$>...

    > I'd be interested in knowing some of the arguments you used to win over VB,
    > as I've been asked to put a couple of articles together suggesting why VB
    > users might consider switching to Python.


    The first obvious reason is that VB 6 (which most VB users currently use) will
    be unsupported by 31-Mar-2005.
    http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=fh;en-us;LifeDevToolFam

    The change from VB 6 to VB.Net is a huge change and in some cases a complete
    re-write.
    For some features missing in .Net see:
    http://www.mvps.org/vb/index2.html?rants/vfred.htm


    Regards,

    Ray Smith
     
    Ray Smith, Jul 7, 2003
    #3
  4. Hi Ray, Steve

    The company that is interested in finding an alternative has provided a
    software solution for 25 years now. It has been through a plethora of
    microsoft conversions from dos, /BASIC through to WinXP /VB 6.0. As some
    companies are small their version has an Access Database (dont ask me why
    :)) and the medium to large sized organisations have SQL Server backends.

    I am also doing a job for a partner company of theirs and they originally
    wanted a VB6 front end onto a SQL Server backend. Luckily the head of the
    partner company is an open minded I.T professional (going back to assembler
    / unix programming) so convincing him was not too difficult. The press has
    been really good regarding open source and linux so I think more people are
    realising that there are better products that exist that dont bear the
    Microsoft name.

    Ray is correct in what he says, VB6 has a short lifespan and the migration
    to VB.NET is not that simple.

    This company is now having untold problems with WinXP as long running
    network connections that are idle are automatically disconnected, their
    application for small users open a permanent connection to Access and this
    disconnecting "feature" for the sake of network performance is causing
    corruptions.

    The issues with MDAC (ADO) is also causing support nightmares, i.e
    downgrading upgrading , but im not to up to date with all the issues
    regarding this. Python solves this as modules are text files and through
    sys.path one can control the search path

    DLL versions etc have been a nightmare since day one ....

    My first motivation was to get them away from Desktop dev and move to
    intranet based applications. This they realise and can see the benefits of
    moving to this new ("Yet old") alternative. So the question then was What
    language / technology to use ?

    My first issue to highlight was that if we went with Microsoft then the
    costs would be greater not only in licensing but also server specs, and
    from fellow colleagues doing .NET development they all say its hungry on
    system resources. I also emphasized that Microsoft will be "coercing" them
    to keep upgrading and that we should remain vendor neutral and get out of an
    environment where choice is limited ....

    Having programmed in Perl on Linux, I remembered how frustrating it was to
    come back to your code or others , 6 months later and not understand it :)-)
    not that bad) I think perl is great, so I shifted to python which I know
    offers way more than VB 6, even VB.NET especially if multiple programmers
    are to work on a project. I also emphasized the importance of a language
    been controlled and progressing through programmer enhancement proposals and
    computer science principles rather than a marketing panel, I mean how many
    times do they change concepts and badge it under something new in VB ? I
    also love ruby but I still feel that there are too few libraries, datbase
    interfaces (we need this for possible integration.)

    Visual Basic has also been a nightmare for memory management and its 1MB
    stack space, so recursion is out, in a recent project I have had to write
    recursive and non recursive quicksorts and binary searches so I can switch
    on large array sets.

    I also feel that microsoft's focus on marketing concepts without fixing or
    enhancing the core language, even in VB6 now arrays dont have pop so one has
    to hold the entire array in memory even when your down to the last few
    elements. There are ways to remove items but a lot of work. I feel that its
    things like this rather than Data Environments, Class Wizards and
    containment instead of inheritence is what has made it into the language
    that it is.

    Not sure if I am making sense, one could write forever :)

    Cheers

    Graeme


    "Ray Smith" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > "Steve Holden" <> wrote in message

    news:<am0Oa.461715$>...
    >
    > > I'd be interested in knowing some of the arguments you used to win over

    VB,
    > > as I've been asked to put a couple of articles together suggesting why

    VB
    > > users might consider switching to Python.

    >
    > The first obvious reason is that VB 6 (which most VB users currently use)

    will
    > be unsupported by 31-Mar-2005.
    > http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=fh;en-us;LifeDevToolFam
    >
    > The change from VB 6 to VB.Net is a huge change and in some cases a

    complete
    > re-write.
    > For some features missing in .Net see:
    > http://www.mvps.org/vb/index2.html?rants/vfred.htm
    >
    >
    > Regards,
    >
    > Ray Smith
     
    Graeme Matthew, Jul 7, 2003
    #4
  5. Graeme Matthew

    Stephen Ferg Guest

    > I'd be interested in knowing some of the arguments you used to win over VB,
    > as I've been asked to put a couple of articles together suggesting why VB
    > users might consider switching to Python.


    I really hope you're able to do those articles comparing Python and
    VB.

    I'm trying to promote Python within the Federal government, and my own
    agency, the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Right now, the chief
    alternative at BLS to Python is Java, but not too long ago it would
    have been VB and PowerBuilder.

    Folks are moving away from PowerBuilder mostly because of concern
    about the vendor's longterm support/viability, but VB actually may
    rise again, as there is a small but noticeable groundswell of
    discontent with Java's clumsiness and verbosity.

    Bottom line: If we can develop materials making a convincing case for
    Python compared to VB, there are situations where such material might
    be of real help.

    -- Steve Ferg
     
    Stephen Ferg, Jul 7, 2003
    #5
  6. Graeme Matthew

    Nick Vargish Guest

    (Stephen Ferg) writes:

    > I'm trying to promote Python within the Federal government, and my own
    > agency, the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Right now, the chief
    > alternative at BLS to Python is Java, but not too long ago it would
    > have been VB and PowerBuilder.


    Sounds like the situation here at the <Federal Agency Where I Work>
    where I'm trying to promote Python as a viable alternative to Java or
    Visual Basic.

    I'm currently seeing the most resistance in these areas:

    * Who makes Python? A lot of the culture is still mired in the idea
    that a corporate entity is required for a product to be fully
    supported, or viable in the long term. I like to remind them how
    well Sun's stewardship has "served" the Java community, but I need
    more than negative counterexamples.

    * Who provides training? I mean no disrespect to my coworkers, and
    present company is of course excluded, but a lot of the federal
    workforce has no incentive to learn on their own. Unless a
    training course is provided, with certifications and free tote
    bags, there is very little motivation for people to learn new
    technology.

    * How do we deploy Python? Until we upgrade all the systems here to
    recent versions of Redhat Linux (joke!), installing a Python
    environment is an extra step. I can point out that finding an
    appropriate JRE is a worse nightmare, but as above, I need more
    than negative counterexamples.

    We're currently in something of a holding pattern while a bit of
    reorganization takes place in the IT departments, but things will
    probably be changing rapidly (as rapidly as any change occurs in a
    government institution) once the organizational situation is
    stabilized.

    There was some talk of forming a SIG for Python in the US Government,
    did that ever go anywhere?

    Nick

    --
    # sigmask.py || version 0.2 || 2003-01-07 || Feed this to your Python.
    print reduce(lambda x,y:x+chr(ord(y)-1),'Ojdl!Wbshjti!=obwAqbusjpu/ofu?','')
     
    Nick Vargish, Jul 8, 2003
    #6
  7. Nick> * Who makes Python? A lot of the culture is still mired in the
    Nick> idea that a corporate entity is required for a product to be
    Nick> fully supported, or viable in the long term. I like to remind
    Nick> them how well Sun's stewardship has "served" the Java
    Nick> community, but I need more than negative counterexamples.

    Is Apache used by your organization?

    Nick> * Who provides training? I mean no disrespect to my coworkers,
    Nick> and present company is of course excluded, but a lot of the
    Nick> federal workforce has no incentive to learn on their
    Nick> own. Unless a training course is provided, with certifications
    Nick> and free tote bags, there is very little motivation for people
    Nick> to learn new technology.

    There are people (like Mark Lutz and Wesley Chun) and larger organizations
    (perhaps ActiveState?) who do Python training.

    Nick> * How do we deploy Python? Until we upgrade all the systems
    Nick> here to recent versions of Redhat Linux (joke!), installing a
    Nick> Python environment is an extra step. I can point out that
    Nick> finding an appropriate JRE is a worse nightmare, but as above,
    Nick> I need more than negative counterexamples.

    It should be a small extra step. If you can't use Sean Reifschneider's RPMs
    directly, you can probably build RPMs for your version of RH Linux using his
    spec files, then install that across your organization. Similarly, for
    Windows users the installer is easily run.

    Skip
     
    Skip Montanaro, Jul 8, 2003
    #7
    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. walala
    Replies:
    4
    Views:
    2,175
    Ralf Hildebrandt
    Sep 8, 2003
  2. Andy
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    758
  3. Replies:
    2
    Views:
    302
  4. Austin 7873
    Replies:
    5
    Views:
    216
    Eric Hodel
    Jan 27, 2007
  5. Rob Redmon

    Convert day of year to month, day

    Rob Redmon, Apr 4, 2008, in forum: Ruby
    Replies:
    7
    Views:
    340
    Alex Wayne
    Apr 4, 2008
Loading...

Share This Page