Python Syntax Influencing New Languages

To this day C++ is the language I have programmed the longest in (although my Python experience is catching up fast), and at some point I even thought it would be the only programming language I would ever need and use. I actively stayed away from Python, mainly because I had heard about the forced indentation and having had bad experiences with Fortran before. But within two weeks after being forced to use Python I was sold. The Python syntax is definitely one of the attractions. So even though Python itself hasn’t (yet) taken over the world of programming languages, I am happy to see Python influencing new languages.

A while back jj pointed out Reia, which is a language for the Erlang virtual machine. The syntax looks a lot like Python’s, which almost makes me want to play with it. (The concepts of Erlang make it really attractive with the multicore architectures and all, but just reading the Wikipedia article on Erlang made my head hurt because of the syntax.)

Today I was reading about Delight, which is a Python-like syntax for the D programming language. (This is kind of ironic, because D is the nicer C++.) I can’t say I am sold on all of the ideas of Delight, but I do welcome any attempts to make other programming languages more Pythonic in syntax if nothing else.

Not that long time ago languages marketed themselves by having C-like syntax to make it easier to switch. I am wondering if Python is becoming the new C in that respect.

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  1. Anon:

    > C++ is the language I have programmed the longest in (although Python is catching up fast)


  2. jason:

    There’s also the reigning king of pythonic languages, Boo, which targets .NET CLR/Mono.

    It doesn’t make an appearance on your “List of languages I’ve used” blog entry (, so I figured I’d mention it. It’s actually very interesting; it’s essentially Python + Static Typing + Type Inference + a ‘Duck’ type. It’s also targetting the CLR which probably gives it the most available libraries of the pythonic langs mentioned.

  3. Tomas:

    You’ve also got the Cobra programming language which is looking interesting.

  4. David:

    Ah, I see you have used the dreaded “news headline gerund” in your article title. Many native English speakers get somewhat edgy when they see or hear phrases like “Russia pressing free trade agreement” even though news anchors absolutely *adore* the form. There is more than one way to align your title with the most persnickety of English speakers; one option is “Python Syntax is Influencing New Languages”


  5. Heikki Toivonen:

    @Anon: I changed the wording to “(although my Python experience is catching up fast)” which is hopefully clearer.

    @David: Interesting, I wasn’t aware of that. I’ll try to pay attention to that in the future. Thanks for the info.

  6. Gautier:

    If only I had the (free) time, I would make a delight clone, but using C++ instead of D…

  7. Julie Jones:

    Interesting observation. I have been keeping up with progress on D and noticed that many of the semantics of python have been added. I am guessing that it is just a case of the newer building on the older, but I really like it!