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From Russel Winder <rus...@winder.org.uk>
Subject Re: Maven coordinates going forward
Date Mon, 27 Mar 2017 17:28:38 GMT
On Mon, 2017-03-27 at 12:47 -0400, Gerald Wiltse wrote:
> 
[…]
> Specifically, reaching out to the Python maintainers for
> guidance.  In
> hindsight, someone deeply involved usually has a very clear vision of
> "What
> we should have done instead was...".  It would be a major missed
> opportunity if nobody pursues that avenue.
> 
[…]

I cannot speak for the core developers, but I am sure I could ask them
via the various Python mailing lists. The introduction of Python 3 was
not handled well in my view from the social and management perspective
and this led to a majority of the tribalism issues that were seen. The
changes to the data model were large, and needed, and affected library
writers more than end users. The biggest change that affected end users
was the shift from ASCII to Unicode as the representation of strings.
This broke any code using strings for networking.

Not having packages such as future and six, and tools such as 2to3
properly in place before the mass push to Python 3 was a bit of a
problem.

However the single biggest problem was that many influential people
said "Python 3, no way" from the outset. Also a couple of high profile
projects said "the issue of strings is too big, we will not change". A
well-thought of Python distribution refused to accept the existence of
Python 3, and out of that that distribution is now dead and
Anaconda/Miniconda from Continuum Analytics is now the default
distribution for people not use an OS with packaging – or actually
sometimes anyway. Also a few Linux distributions based on mass use of
Python are based on code that is at least a decade old (Scientific
Linux, I am looking at you).

All of this led to a Python 2 vs Python 3 warfare that was almost
totally nothing to do with technicalities. It was to do with vested
interests and financial muscle. It became tribal almost like the
Green/Purple Drazi in "Geometry of Shadows" an episode of Babylon 5 htt
ps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcBTOU7RvbU .

It has taken a long time for Python 3 to become ascendant but ascendant
it is. The old "stick with Python 2" project have quietly enabled
Python 3 and tried to avoid any publicity about this.

So the change was a technical success and a management and social
failure.

Thus changing the package names is a management problem not a technical
problem. So the only real question is how to enable redirection at
dynamic link time.
 
-- 
Russel.
=============================================================================
Dr Russel Winder      t: +44 20 7585 2200   voip: sip:russel.winder@ekiga.net
41 Buckmaster Road    m: +44 7770 465 077   xmpp: russel@winder.org.uk
London SW11 1EN, UK   w: www.russel.org.uk  skype: russel_winder
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