E-Scribe : a programmer’s blog

About Me

PBX I'm Paul Bissex. I build web applications using open source software, especially Django. Started my career doing graphic design for newspapers and magazines in the '90s. Then wrote tech commentary and reviews for Wired, Salon, Chicago Tribune, and others you never heard of. Then I built operations software at a photography school. Then I helped big media serve 40 million pages a day. Then I worked on a translation services API doing millions of dollars of business. Now I'm building the core platform of a global startup accelerator. Feel free to email me.

Book

I co-wrote "Python Web Development with Django". It was the first book to cover the long-awaited Django 1.0. Published by Addison-Wesley and still in print!

Colophon

Built using Django, served with gunicorn and nginx. The database is SQLite. Hosted on a FreeBSD VPS at Johncompanies.com. Comment-spam protection by Akismet.

Pile o'Tags

Stuff I Use

bitbucket, Django, Emacs, FreeBSD, Git, jQuery, LaunchBar, Markdown, Mercurial, OS X, Python, Review Board, S3, SQLite, Sublime Text, Ubuntu Linux

Spam Report

At least 236428 pieces of comment spam killed since 2008, mostly via Akismet.

Why the python.org redesign is good

I just posted this mini-rant over at reddit.com in response to implications that Python is somehow selling out by getting a more business-friendly makeover.

Here's the thing about the new site being "too corporate" or whatever.

Python is not a band with a MySpace profile and an awesome debut album. It's a programming language. Programming languages live if they're used, and more or less die if they're not used. Enthusiasts, e.g. reddit users, will find what's cool regardless. Corporations, on the other hand, need to be marketed to. If you love Python, you should love the idea of it putting on a little bit of professional dress -- because that ultimately means you are more likely to actually get paid to program in Python down the road.

Maybe one of the reasons you like Python is because it's kind of like the Rebel base on jungle moon Yavin 4 staging a daring attack on the big bad Static Empire. There's certainly part of me that feels that way. As Python becomes more mainstream you are going to feel some pain. That doesn't mean that the growth is wrong; it means that you are devoted to being alternative. Not necessarily a bad thing.

Did you get into Python because of how the old website looked? Of course not. You didn't really care. Because you're a programmer. The language was cool and that drew you in. Maybe the friendly community helped. If this matches your experience, and you didn't really care about how the old site looked, then I recommend not caring about how the new site looks either.

End rant.

Tuesday, March 7th, 2006
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