Wednesday, March 23, 2005

IronPython Keynote

Be sure to read Jeremy's notes, they're a little meatier:

Jim Hugunin of Microsoft spoke on IronPyton (python compiling to the .net clr). Originally shown one year ago at PyCon and polished for OSCON 2004 (released under the CPL) Jim had disappeared into Redmond for a while, settled into work for a bit, then after a bit of time, released 0.6, now under their shared source initiative. . Depends on .net 2.0, which is unfortunate, as 2.0 is under-deployed and somewhat alpha.

Showed a short demo which exposed the immediacy of the python console, which is a pretty neat thing to demo with, and considering the !Immediacy of Visual Studio, this was a nice technology for people to have on Windows.

Showed python invoking xaml layouts, which was very nice. Some numbers:

About 70% faster than 2.2/2.3 cpython on xp. 2.0 framework version 80% faster than cpython (running 2.4).

Showed python calling c# and c# calling python methods. Very cool stuff. The software is .7, so it's still super-alpha, but if I had to serve python on XP I'd certainly consider IronPython, maybe even over cpython. Neat stuff. I asked about Mono and Rotor (two alternative implementations of the CLI/R) and he noted that it runs on both, but they aren't as fast. This was expected. He noted that the Mono CLR had similar performance as Cpython when running the pystone benchmark.

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