Peripherial issues, libraries, language bindings etc, are important, but they are community effort dependent, so they'll evolve organically.
However, growth of the community itself depends on the union soup with awful state: RunTime, VirtualMachine, GIL, Multi-Thread/process, thread libraries, computation clusters, GPUs, memory integrated multi-cores, pypy, any possible python compiler, llvm, sdcc, x86, arm, embedded relateds, microcontrollers, phones, other buzz words and blah blah. Some are related with python, and some are even unrelated to the python at the first sight. However, looking at the http://www.ohloh.net/languages/compare
you'll see C, C++, Java, Python each share approx 10% of the total code commits and 7% of the total active projects on earth. Considering the effect of these languages on the soup, Python lags behind.
Besides; C0x, C++11 standardization, STL, Boost.org, pocoproject.org http://live.gnome.org/Vala
, and GO! are doing well. That is, Python had to rethink the its strategy about C stuff. Rather than duplicating the efforts in the C main stream (especially in concurency and libraries) it should cooperate and/or merge in some form (A Pypy, Python<->C/C++ compiler, or any other mix).
A practical layer/language/syntax/platform/library collection/etc (whatever you call it) need over C/C++ is obvious. Now face it: It is the very reason for the existance of Python community. Now, they demand the power of C and concurrency. That is, there is a strong need and inertia for the transformation of "C/C++" into a seamless "C/C++/Python" suite. For this to happen transparency and connectivity with C/C++ had to be improved. Here I'm not talking about an assimilation into C bureacracy. On the contrary, if it can utilize its potential, Python can even dominate that landscape.
If it can not, looking around there is Google's Go. Addresses all wanted paradigms, concurency, performance, native code and some libraries. But again lacks community. (for now!)
And there is little Lua, addressing lightweightness. (Python should be as well.) But lacks a community to support peripherials and libraries, organization..
So we are now here at Python, but not without wrinkles. I'd like to see Python transforming itself into an amorphous C/C++/Python suite. If that happens, the language debate will be over.
So my word is for PyPy on 3000 in the shortest possible time. It should be available with extreme ease to the casual user on the standard distribution. Let's see how things will evolve around it. If Python can get the attention of other toolchain builders (especially http://llvm.org/
), things can get quite a lot exiting. Its reflections will inturn transform the Python itself. I guess 4000 is about this..
If Python can not succeed, most will go for GO. And I'd be glad if Vala/Genie would have been a good competition.
So what is the position of Python on this playground?