[IAEP] Sugarized binaries? was Re: users doing python in XOs

Yama Ploskonka yamaplos at gmail.com
Mon Dec 3 12:08:06 EST 2012


I guess that if your faith is in in constructi**sm, and Python is part 
of the belief system, then do please, use Python!

(for the new, discussing languages is often described as "religious wars")

The main point, and I am glad you agree at least to some level, is that 
compiled runs faster.
If your source is Python, and you can compile that, you are among those 
If you /cannot/ compile Python, well, I'm sorry, dunno.

when I was childish-er, I did code for astronomy and accounting using 
LOGO, to prove it could be done.
Even though it worked, that does not mean it was the "best" tool (in 
those days I always wanted to learn LISP, which would compile :-) Sky 
and Telescope had BASIC code, that I would port to LOGO to showoff)

My interest currently is in microcontrollers, and how quality education 
for the gifted can be improved by using microcontrollers as a learning 
object and medium and message.

In such circumstances I teach to use C - any other would be rather 
silly, though I guess I could preach for LOGO, again, or celebrate COBOL 
maybe (though I hear it has some serious i/o issues), or accept Python, 
even, I guess. I hear there's even LOLCAT, for those of that persuasion.

I certainly want to teach to avoid proprietary and low-ceiling options, 
meaning especially that Danish company, which has very powerful 
evangelists and money to advance its creed, to the point that the 
Uruguay government has adopted it for Middle and High School.

One dear friend is very able with Basic for Atmels, and makes an 
excellent case for it, including GOTO, and I believe that he is right, 
in that niche. Since BASCOM won't do Linux, then it's no use for me, and 
I will not bow to it.

On 12/03/2012 09:59 AM, James Simmons wrote:
> Yama,
> I have no trouble defending Python.  I've been programming for a 
> living for 30+ years and I've done COBOL, Basic Assembly Language, 
> Fortran, BASIC, Turbo C, C++, Objective C, Visual Basic, Java, Python, 
> and probably some other stuff I can't remember.  Of the lot of them 
> Python best represents low floor no ceiling.  It is easy to learn for 
> a beginner, supports (but does not require) object oriented 
> programming, and does not have abominations like GO TO line number (or 
> ALTER GO TO.  Don't get me started on COBOL).  It is a suitable 
> language for a professional programmer to use.  Google uses it quite a 
> bit.  IBM uses JYTHON (a Python interpreter written in Java) as a 
> scripting language for its WebSphere product.  Django lets you write 
> web applications in Python, including Booktype (used by FLOSS 
> Manuals).  There's a ton of good stuff written in Python.  I used to 
> run the Freevo media center and that was all Python.
> It is pointless to ask if it is the one programming language to have 
> if you could only have one.  If you're going to program for a living 
> you need to learn more than one language.  I would go so far to say 
> that until you've learned three languages you won't be able to truly 
> master your first one.
> Of course if you don't intend to program for a living Python is an 
> even better choice.
> Compiled languages do run faster than interpreted, but even on an XO 
> laptop that isn't as big an issue as it used to be.
> James Simmons
> On Sun, Dec 2, 2012 at 2:57 PM, Yama Ploskonka <yamaplos at gmail.com 
> <mailto:yamaplos at gmail.com>> wrote:
>     Maybe there was a misunderstanding. I have no intention to rewrite
>     Sugar activities.
>     Thank you for your concern.
>     No worry no more. I learned that my relevant target audience for
>     Sugarizing RPMs, kids potential microcontroller developers in
>     Uruguay, no longer are limited by the block Ceibal has put on sudo
>     in XOs.
>     Because they don't use XOs anymore.
>     They use Ubuntu, on Classmates.
>     As to the background, my personal experience with compiled vs.
>     interpreted is that compiled runs faster.
>     So, if you compile your code (I remember how excited we were when
>     one of our pals discovered this compiler for Basic, back when) it
>     would "improve" things.
>     No idea if there is such a thing as a compiler that will take
>     Python as source, but nowadays it becomes a moot point, for me, to
>     Sugarize things.
>     People free to use sudo, will use sudo.
>     The others use Ubuntu. They both use Terminal and don't even
>     notice the silly overhead the GUI causes them, but since the
>     binaries are so fast in compiling, it doesn't really matter.
>     A few XO users are lost - I don't have the skills to help them, sorry.
>     as to the specialized use, well, I really don't know, not being of
>     that persuasion, if it is or is not.
>     As to real world use of accessing the code by kids to make
>     modifications directly on their own XOs, I agree it was a *nice*
>     idea (I loved it when I heard about it)
>     thank you again!
>     On 12/02/2012 02:33 PM, Martin Dengler wrote:
>         On Sun, Dec 02, 2012 at 10:57:39AM -0600, Yama Ploskonka wrote:
>             On 12/02/2012 08:13 AM, Martin Dengler wrote:
>                 On Sat, Dec 01, 2012 at 10:08:07PM -0600, Yama
>                 Ploskonka wrote:
>                     If it is defunct, can we use binaries finally to
>                     optimize and speed
>                     up operation
>                 "Using binaries" is not what needs to be done.
>                  "Rewriting each
>                 activity" (that you want to speed up) is what you're
>                 saying needs to
>                 be done.  That's a lot more work than just finding the
>                 bottlenecks in
>                 existing python applications and reducing them.
>             [no response]
>         <shrug>
>             with lesser importance, my authorities were that C and
>             variants are
>             faaaaar ahead [...] of anything else [...], as "the
>             language for the
>             real world" right now [...] I'm surprised to hear otherwise
>         Of course C is the most popular (by lines written, and
>         usefulness as a
>         "desert island language"), and nobody say anything but.
>             [...] but then there are specialized applications, I
>             agree, and
>             opinions :-)
>         Specialized applications like a constuctivist learning platform,
>         perhaps?
>             I quote the Python link: “It’s still a relatively niche
>             skill-set
>             and demand isn’t astronomical [...]"
>         Your tiobe.com <http://tiobe.com> reference categorizes python
>         as a "mainstream
>         language".  If you're asking about re-writing major/all Sugar
>         activities, we'd better have more to argue about than that.
>         Martin
>     _______________________________________________
>     IAEP -- It's An Education Project (not a laptop project!)
>     IAEP at lists.sugarlabs.org <mailto:IAEP at lists.sugarlabs.org>
>     http://lists.sugarlabs.org/listinfo/iaep

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