[mod_python] mod_python bake-off?

Jorey Bump list at joreybump.com
Thu Sep 2 17:28:44 EDT 2004

Robert Sanderson wrote:

> What's the point of an HTML authoring competition that happens to use 
> Python to generate the pages?

It seems appropriate to judge a webapp framework partly on the quality 
of the HTML it produces and the tools it provides to accomplish this.

> If it's about interesting things that can be done with mod_python, then 
> I'll enter Cheshire3.  If it's just a case of who can write some HTML 
> and have python script serve it, I fail to see the point.

Performing a task and designing an interface are two sides of the same 
coin when creating webapps. A predefined interface could very well turn 
it into an HTML/JavaScript competition as programmers grapple with 
limitations they wouldn't normally impose on themselves. Let form follow 
function, so that developers get a chance to show innovate ways to solve 
the problem.

For example, I often spread conditional logic over several pages. I use 
Python to do server side error checking because it's much nicer than 
JavaScript and keeps my apps self-contained. I use temporary session 
identifiers that don't require setting cookies. My tiny brain finds this 
extremely easy to do with Python, moreso than with other languages. 
There's no question that programming my webapps in Python has affected 
the way they look, so I'd hate to see a predefined interface prevent me 
from using the skills I've acquired.

Maybe it's a good idea to establish some style restrictions, but if a 
little eye candy encourages people to look under the hood, even better. 
It should still be slashdotted, SQL injected, cross-site scripted, W3C 
validated, idiot-tested, and hit with anything else you think a champion 
webapp should be able to withstand. Otherwise, it might just as well be 
a paint-by-numbers contest (where the losers would be the most 
interesting, I'm sure).

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