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“…members of the Python Software Foundation (PSF) have been actively trying to have my book removed from other books and websites. […] simply because…I don’t like how they implemented Python 3. […] I also hope that you understand that I cannot continue helping the Python Software Foundation given their track record of abuse.”

“Starting July 8th, 2017 both my Python 2 and Python 3 books will be no longer free to read.”


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    I also put in a lot of effort to make this version of the book work well with Windows, Linux, and macOS.  I bought a Microsoft Surface book and did all of the videos right in Windows, so I know the book works well with Windows.  I then have special install videos for macOS and Linux in the key places where macOS differs from Windows.

    Credit where credit’s due, that’s way more than most books would do to ensure cross-OS compatibility, which both speaks well of Shaw and poorly of the rest of the industry.

    With that out of the way, I’m perversely glad that Shaw is now charging for the books. From my understanding the big reason everybody used to recommend LPTHW is because it was the only halfway comprehensive book that was also free online. If he starts charging for it, people will stop referring to it, which I think will help the community in the long run. Anecdotally, I’ve met a lot more people who said that they started with LPTHW and it discouraged them from programming than people who said they started with LPTHW and really enjoyed it.

    Also, he recommends memorizing truth tables instead of learning how the Boolean logic works, which is equal parts horrifying and hilarious.

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      Modesty much? Basically claiming full solo credit for an entire revolution of teaching people to code, and kicking off the boot camp era. I’m glad that Zed has done so much for the python community, and did help a lot of people. I hope he does get a good income from the sale of these books, but much of this article reads like high horse sour grapes.

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        As much as I like Zed Shaw’s earlier writing, anyone who says that the PSF has a “track record of abuse” is delusional.

        I also have a very limited professional experience with Zed, and since he’s slinging mud at an organization that I don’t think deserves it, I’ll share this single story, since I think it’s telling.

        In 2013, I emailed him to check a job reference for a job candidate for my company. The candidate had worked with him on a team. I sent Zed a short email to check the reference and asked, “Did you find him to be an exceptional engineer? Why?”

        Zed replied back with this one-liner: “Are you an exceptional company? Why?”

        Sighing and rolling my eyes, I decided to play his game. I described in a couple paragraphs why I thought my company fit the values – remote work, OSS contributions, data scaling challenges – that would be a good fit for the candidate.

        3 days later, Zed never replied.

        I emailed back, “Even a simple +1 or -1 on this candidate would be helpful for me.”

        And, he never replied again.

        Here’s one lesson for anyone who has worked with Zed: never list him as a job reference!

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          There’s also the case that Zed has caused enough public drama that there would be people wanting to remove references to his writings for any number of reasons.

          I stopped reading his writings after that slur-filled blog post where he railed against all of the Rails core team.

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          Sounds like a lot of work to update your book to a non-turing complete language…

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            I mean I’m sure they’re on archive.org if you really can’t pay for them, there are better books to learn Python though