Wednesday, May 06, 2009

A Good Mix 5: Cookbook entries, ADODBAPI and IronPython with Asterisk

Only the finest selection of articles and blog posts on IronPython and related topics.
A recipe in the IronPython Cookbook showing how you can prompt the user for a connection string (for connecting to databases) using a built-in connection string editor dialog box from the Microsoft .NET Framework.
A blog entry demonstrating the power of the interactive interpreter for exploring new libraries. This entry investigates AmiConnector, which is a .NET library for working with the Asterisk Manager.
Dave Fugate, IronPython testing and infrastructure guy, pays homage to Vernon Cole for pywin32's adodbapi which runs under both CPython and IronPython. The tests have now been added to the IronPython test infrastructure so that the IronPython team will get early warning if they break it. Dave comments "Now I just need to setup Northwind databases on 40+ test machines...".
Another IronPython cookbook recipe and a very cute hack. This shows you to how to make your IronPython and Python scripts 'self-executing' on Windows by renaming them as .bat or .cmd files and adding a sprinkling of magic at the start.
A hyperbolic entry on the soberly named "Python conquers the universe" blog declaring that IronPython rather than Powershell is the future of Windows scripting:
So PowerShell is here, and it works. But its really ugly. (Your aesthetic tastes may vary.) Why, I wondered, didn't they just use Python? Mr. Payette even says that one of the goals of PowerScript was to "support a more conventional scripting experience ... [as in] VBScript, Perl, or Python."

I don't know. PowerShell development began a long time ago, before Python was as widely recognized as it is now. Maybe that just wasn't a live option at the time the project began.

But — and this is my point — it is now. Python, in the form of IronPython, is an elegant scripting language that talks .NET and can access all of .NET's libraries. It is what PowerShell could have been, should have been, would have been if events had played out just a bit differently.

So it seems to me that IronPython has bypassed PowerShell. I can't imagine using PowerShell if I had access to IronPython.

So my prediction is that PowerShell will never gain much traction. In contrast, IronPython will gain a lot of traction - more than anybody ever expected — and become the de facto Windows scripting language.

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