Monday, July 30, 2007

Python in Africa?

[Nairobi, Kenya]
LET'S face it! I just love computer languages. Why? Because if you know what the heck you're doing, you can rule the world. LOL. :-) Come to think of it, I miss the good ole days coding in Pascal, using VAX Macro Assembler in my CS208a Computer Science class with Mrs. Downing, and even taking Prolog for a spin.

Oh, I found Java too verbose and Sun's bloody licensing scheme was annoying. Now, Microsoft's .NET is taking over where it left off. C/C++ was kool, but very macho and, damn, did you have to do lots of debugging to get anything running properly. Screw that. Besides, I'd rather use Borland's Delphi, which is the souped up re-incarnation of Turbo Pascal. Heck, the executable code runs just as fast or faster than C/C++...and it's smaller too. No sh!t dudes. Betcha didn't know that.

Enter Python
Now, if you've been living in a cave somewhere in Afghanistan, then you probably will not have a clue about the Python programming language, which is truly a secret weapon in many IT shops around the planet. Trust me on that one. I wrote about it here, so I won't bother reinventing the wheel.

Anyhow, I think it'd be a great language for peeps here in Africa to learn instead of that crappy outdated VB6 language they're still teaching in most of these IT (ahem!) schools. Buyer beware. Oh, Python's creator, Guido van Rossum, now works for Google, which is now the most admired company on the planet. What does that say about them and their committment to being #1? Everything. And the official Python mascot is such a cutie. Don't you agree? :-)

Python jobs on the rise...
According to this blurb on the Oreilly Radar , Python jobs are on the rise. Take a peek at this:
O'Reilly editor Sarah Milstein writes: "My brother, a Python geek who attended PyCon last week, reports that it was hiring fest: 'at PyCon: *everyone* was hiring. I was asked if I would be interested in moving to 2-3 cities for a job, just in casual conversation. Half the lightning talks ended (or started) with "We're hiring". Which was pretty deeply reassuring.'" This information is consistent with our analysis of the online book and job markets. Ruby has more momentum among startups, but Python is also a hot startup language, and is becoming one of the officially sanctioned licenses at many larger companies. For example, it is one of the three "official" languages at Google (C++, Java, and Python)
Wow! Isn't that totally AMAZING? The beauty about Python programming is that the language is simpy a joy to use. It's easy to read...not cryptic at all, and powerfull as hell. You can create desktop apps, web apps, networking apps, use it as your middleware stack, write commercial video games, use it on your mobile device. It simply is the chameleon of programming languages, and that's why I think more people here in Nairobi, Dar es Salaam, Kigali, Lagos, Cape Town, Kampala et al should be USING it. Say goodbye to VB6 and Java for heavens sakes.

Thanks Eiwot...
I'm a member of the Ottawa Python Author's Group so I get a lot of emails on what's going down in the world of Python. Here's some info from Eiwot - a member:
Hi all,
I created new blog about Python programming and Python Articles at Let's check it out :)

Damn, everybody's using Blogger/BlogSpot eh? I guess Google can't keep a good thing under wraps (secret) for too long. :-) Anyhow, I urge you to peek his blog. I'm quite impressed with his posts so far.

Happy computing.


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