Sunday, July 26, 2009

A Good Mix 17: MUD, the Python for .NET that never was, Intellisense for IronPython, SciPy and Silverlight

Yet another selection of articles and projects on IronPython and the Dynamic Language Runtime from around the web.
This is the gitorious project page for a C# project:
Chiroptera is a MUD client written in C# and uses IronPython as a scripting language. It runs on Windows and on Linux. Windows version has a graphical user interface. Linux version has a text interface with 256 color support.
Back way in the past, before 1.0, there was a previous Microsoft project to bring Python to the .NET framework. Unfortunately .NET pre-1.0 wasn't a good platform for dynamic languages and the project was never released. This article (from December 2000) is an interview with Mark Hammond who was the programmer on the project.
Mark Hammond is familiar to most Python programmers because of his excellent development of the PythonWin environment and the PythonCOM extensions. And for the same reasons that we look up to Mark, Microsoft also looks up to Mark. They decided to contact him for help on their implementation of Python for .NET. According to Mark, a working version of Python for .NET should be available Real Soon Now.
Mertz: I can't help but worry that Microsoft will try to use proprietary extensions and enhancements in a familiar "embrace, extend, extinguish" strategy. In other words, I fear that Python for .NET might not actually be very good for Python in the long term.

Hammond: Well, if .NET becomes a significant force, then having a Python implementation that targets it can only help Python, much in the same way that JPython helps Python by targeting the JVM.
This project is in Japanese so it's hard to know exactly how, but ironpythoneditr aims to provide intellisense support for IronPython. The ever wonderful google translate renders the page thusly:
IronPython is IntelliSense.
.NET Framework to use in IronPython dynamic language. C# and VB.NET to IronPython classes and can help you, you can embed scripts in the application, it will become hard to use or not use for any object or method. So, IronPython has developed a taste for the intelligentsia.
Downloading the project it uses IronPython 1.0 (even though the latest release is this month) and includes an example Windows Forms console type program with autocomplete for object members.
Two articles by John Cooke on using SciPy with Python. He includes a plug for using Ironclad to use SciPy with IronPython:
IronPython cannot use SciPy directly because much of SciPy is implemented in C and at this time IronPython can only directly import modules implemented in Python. However, the Ironclad package enables IronPython to use SciPy. See Numerical computing in IronPython with Ironclad for details.
A turkish article on working with Silverlight and IronPython. Includes some nice examples of styled UI elements in XAML.

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