An article published in the Economist Science and Technology Department on July 19, 2018, translated by Fahad Saidi in a simple manner.In December 1989, Jaidu Van Rüssem, a Dutch computer scientist, began his Christmas project. After being bored with other programming languages, he wanted to build his own language. His principles were simple. First, it should be easy to read. Instead of extending to the ends of the line and being confined between two blocks, each part is displaced by a displacement from a white space. Second, users should be allowed to create their own packages of special purpose programming modules, which can then be made available to others as the basis for new programs. Third, he wished “short, unique, and somewhat ambiguous”. For this reason it was called a British comic group called Monty Python. The package warehouse became known as the cheese shop.
Nearly thirty years after his invention of Christmas, Van Rousm is likened to a technological version of the character of Monty Python, who inadvertently became Christ in the film “Life of Brian.” “I certainly did not plan to create a language for public use.” But over the past 12 months Google users in America have searched Python more regularly for Kim Kardashian, the famous television star. The search rate has tripled since 2010, while searches for other programming languages have remained constant or decreasing (see chart).
Language popularity has grown not only among professional developers – about 40% use it and 25% want to use it, according to the Stack Overflow forum – but also with ordinary people. Codecademy – a site that has taught 45 million beginners how to use different languages - says the biggest increase in demand is undisputed by those who want to learn Python. Thus Python brings programming to the fingers of those who were once puzzled by programming. The Pythons – as enthusiasts call this language – helped add more than 145,000 packages to the cheese shop, covering various topics from astronomy to game development.
In spite of his enthusiasm for his language, Van Roussem concluded that his supervision, in his role as a “lifelong dictator”, was an unbearable burden. He is afraid that he has become like an idol. “I’m not comfortable with this fame,” he says, with a strange voice like Brian trying to keep crowds of his followers away. “Sometimes I feel that everything I say or do is seen as a very powerful force.” On July 12, he resigned from his honorary position, leaving the Pythons to lead themselves.
No one expected the obsession of statisticians
The Python language is not complete. Other languages have a lot of competence in processing and specialized capabilities. C and C ++ are low-level options that give the user more control over what’s going on inside a computer processor. Java is popular in building complex applications. Java Script is the language chosen for applications accessed through web browsers. There are countless languages developed for different purposes. But Python’s deadly features – Simple syntax makes the code easy to learn and share, and its massive array of third-party packages make it a good general-purpose language. Their versatility is widely seen in users and users. It is employed by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in penetration, Pixar in film production, Google in indexing Web pages, Spotivay in the nomination of songs.
The most tempting temptation the Pythons find in the cheese shop is the use of artificial intelligence. Users can create neural networks, simulating brain relationships, in learning patterns in large amounts of data. Van Rüssem says Python has become the preferred language for data scientists, who have produced a plethora of packets.
However, not all Pythons are very enthusiastic. Zack Sims, president of Codecadame, believes many visitors to his site are trying to learn the skills that can help them in jobs that they usually see as “non-technical.” For example, marketers can use language to build statistical units that measure the effectiveness of advertising campaigns. College lecturers can confirm if they have distributed the grades fairly. (Even journalists in The Economist, who search for information on the Web, usually use programs written in Python to do so.)
Python is particularly valuable for professionals who have long relied on electronic spreadsheet exploration. Citigroup, a US bank, has offered Python a quick course for its junior analysts. The Jobs website, eFinancialCareers, announced that there is a fourfold increase in affinity records that indicate python between the first quarter of 2015 and 2018.
But the thirst for these skills is not without risk. “A person who learns a tool but does not know what is going on inside,” warns Sesar Berri, a partner at Bain & Company, a consulting firm. “Without good supervision, a beginner playing artificial intelligence libraries can reach Suspicious conclusions. Bernd Ziegler, a partner at the Boston Consulting Group, says his company assigns such analyzes to its own data team members only.
One solution to the problem of semi-educated professionals is to teach them good language secrets. Python was the most popular language in American universities in 2014, but its education was usually confined to those studying science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. One of the revolutionary proposals is to educate them from a young age by providing computer science for all in primary schools. Hadi Bartovi, president of code.org, a charity, notes that 40% of American schools offer such lessons, more than 10% in 2013. About two-thirds of the 10-12 age group have an account on code.org. Perhaps the fear that the future will be filled with automated jobs, 90% of Americans want their children to study computer science.
No computer language can be truly general purpose. Specialization will continue to be important. It was true, however, that Christmas, that Van Rousm had done something worth mentioning. Although he does not play the role of Christ, he was a very smart boy.
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