Thanks to both of you for your feedback, much appreciated, especially the detail about context from Buck.

I know John Yeung has said he uses Python like Jack describes. An early champion of it.

"my shop" is at a sizeable company, but till a couple of years ago it was all RPG/CLP. Then management decided to jump into modernization. But it's a massive existing code base. I'm one f three or four of the couple dozen of folks on the team trying to pull everybody forward. Most of them are still not even comfortable with SQL. I've done two or three of the first multi-row     fetch SQL cursors.

So at least for another couple of years it'll be CLLE for the CL stuff. BUT they have been trying to implement Python for the functionality in emailing reports out. Somebody had done it in PHP but they need something better.

I considered Rexx once upon a time, looked intriguing, but never jumped into it. Didn't seem to get much shop use. One colleague really really loved it though.

Thanks again

--Alan


On 10/9/2021 2:20 PM, Buck Calabro wrote:
On Sat, 9 Oct 2021 at 13:42, Infodorado <infodorado@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
I know it's an open-ended question, maybe, possibly with various
perspectives on the subject, but I'd like to find out what people
familiar with Python think about the best tutorials on the language, the
pros and cons of python-specific IDE's, and so on.

For now this does not mean IBM-i specific Python, though this my goal is
to use it to work with functions on IBM i.

So first I'd like to get up to speed on the PC version..

=> I dabbled a bit with the version that somebody implemented before IBM
included it in its open source options.

My idea is mostly to set up for scripting..
I think that learning Python is simple. That is, the core language is
easy to pick up and use, whether you're coming from RPG (procedural)
or Java (OO). The power of the language is not in the core operation
code list; it's the libraries you'll be using. To that end, I find
zero overlap between what I do at home, on my Windows and Linux boxes
(mostly data science for amateur radio!) and what I do at work
(read/write spreadsheets, send email, interface between REST web
services and RPG).

Python is a second-class citizen in the ILE ecosystem. I appreciate
Jack's enthusiasm for relegating CL to launching Python, but in the
space I inhabit, any new language I introduce needs two non-negotiable
attributes:
1) Integrates with and extends existing applications
2) RPG-only colleagues can deal with it
Python is second-class because it does not participate in the
CALL/PARM ILE standard that we all know and love. To integrate Python
(vs develop an entire standalone app) into ILE, you'll want to grok
STDIN and STDOUT. Scott Klement's UNIXCMD is a perfect fit here.

To give you a sense of context for my reply, I am forbidden (!?!?!?!)
from writing any web applications. Not even intranet. That's for The
Professional Web People. Thus, everything I do is back end or green
screen. So it's absolutely wonderful that an existing CLP can have
OVRDBF/OVRPRTF/CALL RPGLE/qsh python createSpreadsheet.py all in one
place. But I don't see the value proposition trying to convert that
existing CLP into a Python script. People in a different space will
reach different conclusions! The point is that I'm almost certainly
not going to be writing Python scripts in places where colleagues
expect a CLP.

I'd like to hear what sort of shop you're in if it's more acceptable
to write the scripts/batch processes in Python and only use CLP to
launch it. I tried that with Rexx some years ago and that was...not a
success.

I don't have a strong preference for a Python-only IDE. I do all of my
RPG/CLP work in RDi (Eclipse) and prefer to edit Python in the same
environment. That said, I've used VS Code and PyCharm. For scripting
in the IBM world, I'm not sure you need anything more complex than
IDLE or even Notepad++. Until you get a solid feel for the exact
things you'll be using Python for, don't sweat the IDE until the lack
starts to be an irritant.

--buck

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