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Microsoft Ships First Python Beta

At the very end of 2005, Microsoft quietly began shipping the first beta of IronPython, a release of the open source Python scripting language that functions within the .NET common language runtime (CLR).

Microsoft basically acquired the project, code-named IronPython, in 2004 when it hired language developer Jim Hugunin, a specialist in “dynamic” programming languages. On Dec. 30, Hugunin announced the release of the first beta test version.

While he didn’t give any timeline for final release of IronPython, Hugunin did say that new releases of the beta will come probably every three weeks or so and that he hoped to keep the number of beta releases under 10. “I'm a huge fan of single digit numbers and a beta 10 release would be unbelievably ugly to have to make,” Hugunin said in a post on an IronPython message forum announcing the first beta.

IronPython is part of Microsoft’s Shared Source Initiative, according to statements on Microsoft’s site.

About the Author

Stuart J. Johnston has covered technology, especially Microsoft, since February 1988 for InfoWorld, Computerworld, Information Week, and PC World, as well as for Enterprise Developer, XML & Web Services, and .NET magazines.

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