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Mon, 29 Dec 2003
Uh, I've discovered MacPython
Well, yesterday I posted about Bob Ippolito's blog. Turns out that the story is much bigger than that, at least for Python people on the Macintosh. There's an entire Python subcommunity dedicated to making Python rock on the Macintosh. At the MacPython page, you'll find the MacPython 2.3 addons for Panther, which include IDLE and a Python IDE as well as a bunch of other stuff. The pythonmac.org site contains an index of more MacPython contributors and their work.

Bill Bumgarner is one of the MacPython contributors, and I found a bunch of useful information on his blog, including this explanation of prebinding. I also found out about IPython and pyrepl, which are augmented command line interpreters for Python. I managed to get both of them running on Panther's python, and I've gotten IPython to work as a wrapper for Chandler's python. I had to patch pyrepl to get it to work for regular python, and I'm not sure I like it enough to do the work for Chandler python. They both offer good command completion, and easier access to the Python documentation (along the way I learned about the PYTHONDOCS environment variable). IPython also includes lots of customization facilties and the ability to log your session and play it back later -- a feature that is really useful when I have to get the repository set up to do some work. pyrepl's big feature is that it can do muliple line editing in the shell, which is nice for Python's loops and conditionals. Unfortunately, the implementation flickers a bit (in character mode!), which makes it hard to work with. The completion support seems better -- it can recognize packages to import, for instance. It also seems that pyrepl isn't being that actively developed any more. I'd love to see pyrepl's multi-line editing, and better completion work their way into IPython.

I'm glad that I discovered this before I wasted too much time. Of course, if I had clicked the MacPython link off of Python.org, I would have found this sooner. But better late than never...

[22:54] | [computers/operating_systems/macosx] | # | TB | F | G | 4 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
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