The Future of Python is in the Past
This post is in response to Calvin Spealman's I Am Worried About the Future of Python.
First, I believe that Calvin's concern is a legitimate one. Python has grown into one of the premier languages in the Open Source communnity - and for good reason. Python is designed from the ground up to support object- oriented development, and the conventions and syntax strongly encourage clean, readable code. It also has an excellent developer community, which is both supportive and uniformly knowledgable.
Despite these enormous advantages, Python has not made its way onto the client side of the web, and has made few inroads into the mobile ecosystem. Calvin sees this as a threat to the very future of the language, in a world where more and more critical software is finding its way into the cloud, to be accessed via a mobile phone or tablet.
If the desktop environment dies, Python (in its current state) is at risk of dying alongside it.
So, what's the solution? Should we form a sweeping effort as a community to push Python into the mobile ecosystem? Perhaps. Should we push into the browser?
I see this trend repeated in other technical communities. If you visit the Ubuntu forums to search for a way to solve a problem, you're likely to find an answer due to the sheer number of people who use Ubuntu - but you're also quite likely to find a hack-ish solution that barely works, or breaks other things in the process. Compare that to the ArchLinux forums, where answers are generally comprehensive and correct (where they already exist). ArchLinux users are - generally speaking, of course - much more technically competent than Ubuntu users. The reason is simple: the barriers to entry for ArchLinux are quite high when compared to Ubuntu.
Be wary of making Python too widespread. Our community is special, and we put it at risk the more popular the language becomes.