On 2009-07-01 I gave a talk at EuroPython called “Python Sucks!”. They made me change the title of the talk, but the first slide sticks, so “Python Sucks!” it is.
It was a bit of a misleading title. As I did actually mention some things that I like about Python.
The slides (updated in blue to add useful things that people said in the talk itself) are available in PDF. I’m not sure the slides are particularly useful without a transcript; it’s not always clear if the point illustrated on the slide is something that I think is a good thing, or a bad thing.
I was a bit overwhelmed with the talk actually. I was thinking that, as I am not as famous as Bruce Eckel or Tony Hoare, about 30 people would turn up; and I think I could probably wrangle about that many people. The Recital Hall holds about 150 people, and it was pretty much full. *gulp*.
The audience included Tony Hoare (Man of Science); when I spotted that I sort of thought “oh no, Tony Hoare is in the house, I’d better behave now”. He usefully (and somewhat embarrassingly on my part) suggested that Occam be added to the cloud of “languages I don’t know enough about”. And it should.
One of the points of the talk was to get the audience talking; I think I did okay at providing a very lively forum for people, not just me, to get their python gripes off their chest. The contributions from members of the audience were well appreciated, and often informative. Certainly I felt that the audience provided a useful contribution, which of course made my job easier.
Later on in his keynote Tony Hoare said something like “from what I’ve seen here today you are doing a good job” [of being scientific engineers, or of steering Python, or something]. I hope he wasn’t referring to me.
Note to self: do not show a slide with “distutils” on it to 150 people. Unless you have nothing to say.