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Thursday, December 16, 2010


O'Reilly Python Cookbook: Python 3 All The Way

I'm pleased to announce that Brian Jones and I have just signed on to be the editors/curators of the upcoming O'Reilly Python Cookbook, 3rd Edition--to appear sometime in late 2011. Brian has posted some details on his blog, but let's just say that I'm really excited to be working on this project. I think it's going to be great!

I've had both prior editions of the Cookbook in my library for some time--in fact, I wrote the section introduction for the chapter on "Extending and Embedding." One thing that I didn't remember until now was that my biographical sketch from the preface of the past edition included the following description:

"David Beazley is a fairly sick man (in a good way)"

I'm not sure who I have to thank for that, but I can say that Brian and I hope to put together the sickest, baddest, most useful Cookbook yet.

Python 3 - All The Way

Yep. It's true. A major feature of the new edition will be an exclusive focus on Python 3. In fact, we simply won't include coverage of anything that doesn't work with it.

Now, I know what you're thinking, this is going to result in the smallest Cookbook ever--coming in just slightly more than 25 pages. Wrong!

There are all sorts of new and exciting things about Python 3 worth writing about. For example, did you know that quite a few past Cookbook recipes are now simply built-in features or one-line Python 3 statements? Moreover, Python 3 has all sorts of interesting new programming idioms--especially related to I/O handling, concurrency, metaprogramming, and more.

Thus, one of our main goals is to present useful recipes that take full advantage of new idioms and which do things the "Python 3" way. In part, this will be welcome information for anyone who has decided to make Python 3 their primary programming environment. However, we also hope that having a useful set of idiomatic recipes will be useful to anyone who is thinking about porting code from Python 2.

Of course, we obviously want to include useful recipes for modules that have already made the transition.

We Want Your Help and Feedback

Past editions of the Cookbook have always been a community effort. The recipes themselves are drawn from submissions to the ActiveState Python Recipes site and are fully attributed. In fact, the folks at ActiveState are an active participant in this project.

As editors, Brian and I play a number of roles. First and foremost, we're simply going to work to put together a great set of recipes along with tests to make sure they work as advertised. However, we also have the job of soliciting feedback and guiding the overall project. As part of that, we'd really like to know more about what kinds of recipes to include. Specific programming techniques? More coverage of certain built-in libraries? Information on important third-party extensions? Everything is fair game.

Throughout the project, you can contact us by sending email to 'PythonCookbook' at 'oreilly.com' or writing comments on our blog posts.

Stay Tuned

Throughout the project, Brian and I hope to blog about our progress. You can also follow @bkjones and @dabeaz on Twitter for updates.

-- Dave

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