Today we announced the release of our new ActivePython distributions! The updates include releasing our 2.7.12 and 3.5.2 ActivePython builds as well as incorporating some additional packages. In addition to being a founding sponsor of the Python Software Foundation, this is part of our renewed commitment to provide the best in open source languages to communities and businesses alike. The company is moving forward on many fronts to improve our existing distributions, such as ActivePython, along with building our newest language distribution, ActiveGo.
TDD & Additional Python Packages
According to feedback from our 2016 Open Source Survey, test driven development (TDD) was cited as being used by almost half of all respondents. As such, for the first time in ActiveState history, we are shipping some of the most popular Python testing and code quality packages such as Pyflakes, Pytest, and Coverage directly with the distribution:
- Coverage – reports on how much code is covered by unit tests
- Pyflakes – checks Python programs for well known errors
- Pytest – is a popular unit testing framework
We’ve also added several of the most popular modules that make a Python developer’s life that much easier–VirtualEnv, Requests, Six, Simplejson, DateUtil, and MarkupSafe. Details on these package include:
- VirtualEnv – A tool used to create isolated Python environments, allowing multiple versions of dependencies on the same system without interfering with each other.
- Requests – The most popular library for HTTP development.
- Six – Supplies Python compatibility between the major versions of Python 2 and Python 3.
- Simplejson – Helps with JSON development and is very important in API building and consumption.
- DateUtil – Provides Python developers with an easy way to manipulate times and dates.
- MarkupSafe – Allows for easy string handling of markup representations such as HTML/XHTML and XML.
All of these have the ActiveState stamp of approval on them: good licenses, good code, useful, and ready to use in your project without needing a package manager. Look for a big increase in the number of packages to be added to ActivePython this year, as we expand our distribution to provide the best tools that Python developers rely on to get their jobs done.
Komodo for Python
Now, what’s a great distribution without the ability to code in it right away? With the latest Python distributions, we will be providing an optional install of the Komodo IDE trial when you download ActivePython. Komodo was the original Python IDE, built in Python for Python. In recent years we have expanded it to support a whole host of other languages and frameworks. If you have ever wanted to give our polyglot development environment a spin, we’re making it even easier.
So what’s in the future? Komodo will have improved unit testing and code quality improvements for Python (among other languages) to be released at the end of February. Of course we’re excited about the features that Python 3.6 will be releasing and we will soon be adding support for those.
Are there packages that you just can’t live without? Don’t be shy to reach out and send us your feedback.