Announcing Python Python, a mature, powerful and stable programming language used by tens of thousands of programmers worldwide, has arrived in full force at the heart of Windows 95 and Windows NT. Toting the powerful toolbox which has made it such a sucess on almost every modern operating system, Python for Windows has embraced the metaphors and resources of its new home and turned them into powerful tools within the Python language. Python's wrapper-around-a-tool metaphor allows it to provide a well-formed handle for manipulating the technologies which MicroSoft provides to the programmer. These tools include: - Office automation and customisation through ActiveX and COM Scripting - Networking services - Remote access services - Performance monitoring - Registry maintenance - Database interaction through both ODBC and native database drivers In addition, Python provides access to the standard application-building libraries, the MicroSoft Foundation Classes. Python is a high-level, interpreted, interactive, object-oriented programming language. It provides the modern features programmer's expect or desire, modules, exceptions, dynamic typing, high-level dynamic data types, and classes. It combines remarkable power with clear syntax, and easy extension. It is easy to extend Python by adding new, compiled tools to the language. The compiling of extensions into the language toolbox mitigates the overhead of interpretation, while the ability to mix compiled and interpretted code promotes rapid application development. In addition, it is possible to embed Python itself as a tool in your applications, an easily understood and readily learned extension language. (Should be some sort of bridge between the ideas of extending and the ideas of already-available tools, but I have to start work soon...) Python's extensive, portable toolbox, available on Windows, most Unixes, MacOS, DOS, and OS/2 includes a host of powerful tools which are now easily available to Windows programmers. These include: - TCP/IP socket support - CGI Forms Processing for the World-wide web - Clients and servers for (among others) the HTTP and FTP protocols - Powerful text manipulation facilities - Powerful (optional) numeric and image manipulation facilities One of the most exciting of Python for Windows' new tools is COM/ActiveX support. This tool allows Python to act as both server and client to any COM-capable application or language, a group that includes MSOffice, CorelDraw, MS Active Server Pages, Netscape Communicator, MS Internet Explorer, Delphi, Visual Basic and Visual C++. Client support allows Python to drive these applications (or applications written in these languages), automating tasks, importing or exporting data, customising environments and processing information. Server support allows Python to be driven in a similar manner, to provide access to its tools to any application capable of calling a COM object. > Python's dynamism, flexibility, object oriented features, and > ease of use make it a powerful and useful alternative to Java, > Visual Basic, and compiled languages such as Delphi or C++. > Simply put Python offers the simplest and most powerful way > to solve many important programming and system administration > tasks in the ActiveX/COM environment." It is, however, Python which is the star of Python for Windows. Over seven years old, Python has long been a favourite of Web Masters, Python is a clear, easily learned and understood language with features that lend themselves to developing rapid, robust, dynamic solutions. It is being used to solve problems in many large organisations, notably including ... (insert notes here). It is enthusiastically supported through public newsgroups and mailing lists frequented by a large number of Python enthusiasts. Python arguably provides the best support of any free language available.