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Is this a good time to start learning python?

P: n/a
Recently I woke up inclined to take up the task of learning another
programming language. I've already dipped my toes in Perl (I've read online
tutorials and wrote a couple of irrelevant pet projects) but, as the
computers at my workplace only sport the python interpreter, it probably
means that learning python will end up serving me better, at least in the
short run. Plus, you know how Perl goes.

So far the decision seems to be a no brainer. Yet, Python 3000 will arrive
in a few months. As it isn't backwards compatible with today's Python,
there is the risk that no matter what I learn until then, I will end up
having to re-learn at least a considerable part of the language. To put it
in other words, I fear that I will be wasting my time.

At least that is what a clueless newbie believes. As this group is
frequented by people who have more insight into all things pythonesque,
what are your thoughts on this?
Thanks for the help
Rui Maciel
Mar 31 '08 #1
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6 Replies


P: n/a
En Mon, 31 Mar 2008 13:40:40 -0300, Rui Maciel <ru********@gmail.com>
escribió:
Recently I woke up inclined to take up the task of learning another
programming language. I've already dipped my toes in Perl (I've read
online
tutorials and wrote a couple of irrelevant pet projects) but, as the
computers at my workplace only sport the python interpreter, it probably
means that learning python will end up serving me better, at least in the
short run. Plus, you know how Perl goes.
So far the decision seems to be a no brainer. Yet, Python 3000 will
arrive
in a few months. As it isn't backwards compatible with today's Python,
there is the risk that no matter what I learn until then, I will end up
having to re-learn at least a considerable part of the language. To put
it
in other words, I fear that I will be wasting my time.
Don't be scared by the "backwards incompatible" tag - it's the way to get
rid of nasty things that could not be dropped otherwise. The basics of
Python will continue to be the same, it's not a new, different language;
learning Python 2.X isn't a waste of time.
Python 3 won't be in widespread use until some (long?) time, and some
people won't ever consider it until Python 3.1 arrives; so Python 2.X will
continue being used for a long time.

--
Gabriel Genellina

Mar 31 '08 #2

P: n/a
After reading all replies I've decided to keep the subscription to this
group, crank up the tutorials and start getting my head around Python.

Thanks for all the helpful replies. Kudos, everyone!
Rui Maciel
Apr 1 '08 #3

P: n/a
On Mar 31, 1:36*pm, "Gabriel Genellina" <gagsl-...@yahoo.com.ar>
wrote:
Don't be scared by the "backwards incompatible" tag - it's the way to get *
rid of nasty things that could not be dropped otherwise.
I would consider breaking production code to be "nasty" as well.
Apr 1 '08 #4

P: n/a
En Tue, 01 Apr 2008 13:57:55 -0300, <lb*******@yahoo.comescribió:
On Mar 31, 1:36*pm, "Gabriel Genellina" <gagsl-...@yahoo.com.ar>
wrote:
>Don't be scared by the "backwards incompatible" tag - it's the way to
get *
rid of nasty things that could not be dropped otherwise.

I would consider breaking production code to be "nasty" as well.
Please explain how the existence of Python 3.0 would break your production
code.

--
Gabriel Genellina

Apr 1 '08 #5

P: n/a
On Apr 1, 2:42*pm, "Eduardo O. Padoan" <eduardo.pad...@gmail.com>
wrote:
On Tue, Apr 1, 2008 at 4:20 PM, *<lbonaf...@yahoo.comwrote:
*You misunderstand. *C++ has a lot of "warts" to maintain backwards
*compatibility with C. *The standards committee could eliminate these
*warts to make the language "cleaner", but it would break a lot of
*systems.

It would not "break" anything that not move from C to C++, this is my point.
You missed the point completely. C++ has a new version coming out
soon, and as part of it, the less attractive parts of the language
(like C compatibility) are NOT being removed, as that would break a
lot of existing apps.
People not willing to take the migration path (porting to 2.6, using
the -3 flag, refactoring and re-running the tests untill the warning
are gone, using the 2to3 tool...) will not upgrade. No one will force
you to do it. 2.6 will not desappear from the python.org site anytime
soon.
Will 2.6 be supported with patches and fixes going forward?
Apr 1 '08 #6

P: n/a
On Mar 31, 11:40 am, Rui Maciel <rui.mac...@gmail.comwrote:
Recently I woke up inclined to take up the task of learning another
programming language. I've already dipped my toes in Perl (I've read online
tutorials and wrote a couple of irrelevant pet projects) but, as the
computers at my workplace only sport the python interpreter, it probably
means that learning python will end up serving me better, at least in the
short run. Plus, you know how Perl goes.

So far the decision seems to be a no brainer. Yet, Python 3000 will arrive
in a few months. As it isn't backwards compatible with today's Python,
there is the risk that no matter what I learn until then, I will end up
having to re-learn at least a considerable part of the language. To put it
in other words, I fear that I will be wasting my time.

At least that is what a clueless newbie believes. As this group is
frequented by people who have more insight into all things pythonesque,
what are your thoughts on this?

Thanks for the help
Rui Maciel

Think of it this way -
A.) If you start learning Python 2.5 *today*, and then Python3k comes
out in a few months and (at worst) breaks all your code, you will
still have less code to patch than the person who learned Python 2.3
two years ago :)
B.) If you start learning Python 2.5 *tomorrow*... who knows, we might
not be alive tomorrow. Seize the day.

Seriously, I have watched Guido's GoogleTalk on Py3k plans, and the
changes are not all that scary. I'm looking forward to it.

Cheers,
-Basilisk96
Apr 1 '08 #7

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