Paul Prescod has written an interesting article focusing on why he thinks Python is the way to go right now. He presents a lot of different reasons, most of which I identify myself with and despite the somewhat accented evangelical tone, I’m also a believer that Python is fundamentally the best language out there for most purposes. As for the other purposes, I think Paul nails some of them:
On the other hand, I can see a role for small, focused languages like ANSI C for speed, Python for ease and abstraction, Web template languages for Web delivery, and so forth.
I’ve been increasingly relying on Python lately (through heavy TurboGears usage - which, by the way, got itself a new alpha release) and even if I’ve only barely scratched the surface, it’s been one hell of a ride. Don’t you just love it when you’re writing code and the language insists in removing itself from your way while systematically getting the work done? I do. That’s one of the reasons why I’m constantly amazed - in a derogatory manner, of course - at people advocating Java for pretty much every conceivable purpose in the world. Repeat after me: Java is one of the most obtrusive mainstream programming language in existence. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think Java is the reincarnation of evil. In fact, you can do pretty much everything you want to do with it. It’s just how painful it is most of the time that keeps me at bay.
Speaking of TurboGears, it seems there is work underway for allowing developers to use an ORM other than SQLObject, in this case SQLAlchemy. I confess that the former has never bit me during my development (maybe because in terms of database backend the app I’m working on is dead simple) but I’ve often read in various mailing lists that the latter does a much better job. The good thing here is that if you intended to develop using TurboGears, you can now use any of them with minimal fuss.
Finally, via Tim O'Reilly over at O'Reilly Radar, a very nice extension of Flickr usage called Zonetag straight from Yahoo! Research. With it, you can automatically tag your photos with the location they were taken at. All just by using your camera phone. Neat!