[mod_python] Promoting Python as web application developmentlanguage

Martin Pool mbp at samba.org
Wed Aug 28 18:49:43 EST 2002

On 28 Aug 2002, Greg Stein <gstein at lyra.org> wrote:

> Note that "Apache" is beginning to mean a lot more than just "the Apache
> http server". You've now got projects such as Tomcat, Xerces, and Cocoon all
> under the Apache banner. Arguably, they have nothing to do with the web
> server :-)
> My point is just that people won't arrive at the ASF simply for "how to
> interface to Apache with Python." Minor point to be sure, but hey
> :-)

I see the distinction, but I think at the moment most people new to
Python/Apache will not.  To a novice, Apache is a web server, and
python.apache.org is the obvious place to look.  

I think many people will be in that category and it would be nice to
help them as much as possible without confusion.

> As a result, I would advocate mod_python as part of the Apache HTTP Server
> Project itself. You've got a web server, and (hey!) here is the Python
> connector. I would even advocate that mod_perl, mod_(d)tcl, and mod_php move
> to this same organization (and whack those language specific
> projects).

OK, so python.httpd.apache.org, or (more reasonably?)
apache.org/httpd/python.  At any rate it would be nice if there was
some kind of official pointer rather than making people search.

> Back to the CPAN-like thing. Given the above view, how does this work?
> Well... consider having some kind of "indexing" or "cataloging" project.
> Language neutral. Sure, you could select by language, but why would it be
> limited to just Perl or just Python? Why not both and Java and Tcl and Ruby
> software?

I'm not sure if ASF needs to solve that whole problem.  Just search
Freshmeat or Google or the new GNU software map for "apache python".

> *That* would be interesting. The trouble with such a beast, though, is
> simply that it is such a hard problem to put together well. If it was easy,
> it would have been done. And the ASF generally prefers to avoid the "dead
> SourceForge project" syndrome. We're much more about *communities* than even
> the software that is produced. The end result is that a certain bar needs to
> be raised to ensure that an ASF project will succeed. That it will have a
> healthy community. If there is no code and no community, then there better
> be a lot of trust in the (few) developers who are proposing such a
> beast :-)

I think one of the problems for somebody starting to do web
programming in Python at the moment is that this "editorial control"
is not really present: it's hard to find out what is a good tool to
use.  For example, a web search tends to throw up references to
mod_snake, which on closer inspection turns out to be currently dead.
Similarly for templating.  

It would be nice if the authority of the ASF could help steer people
in the write direction.  I guess it wouldn't want to get into saying
"templating system X is better than Y", but it might at least provide
that minimum bar of activity/functionality.


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