Upgrading Python

Lessons in keeping up-to-date

by Carl James | BLOOMINGTON, IN | Sept. 13, 2015

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Today I had my first experience in upgrading the version of Python I have been using. I started working on Python this past May and started with version 3.4.3 because that is what the class I was taking was using. We did dabble a bit in Python 2.7, but that was on Python Anywhere and not on any of my local machines. Today, Python 3.5.0 was release on the Python website so I went ahead and upgraded. As I expected, it created some headaches with the projects I had been working on, but I wanted to experience that to see if I could solve the problems.

I’m motivated by this due to one of the most confusing topics in the Python community. The Zen of Python clearly states that “There should be one-- and preferably only one --obvious way to do it.” Yet, despite this, Python still has 2 major releases on its website (versions 2 and 3) despite the fact that 3.0 came out 7 years ago and now the fifth update has been released, without any clear guidance on which should be used.

Both of my current projects were negatively impacted by the upgrade from 3.4.3 to 3.5.0 today. I spent the better part of the day researching the issues, and without a lot of effort, improved my overall environment, learned new built-in features of Python 3 that some of the tutorials I have been using didn’t cover, and found out how to get my projects working in the new version. Now I was only dealing with testing simple code and launching a development server, but I felt that I grew a bit today by taking on the challenge head-on and staying up-to-date with the current release.

Carl James is CompTIA A+ ce Certified

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