Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Meet the Team: Brett Cannon

This post is part of the "Meet the Team" series of posts, which is meant to give a brief introduction to the Python core development team.

Name:Brett Cannon
Location:San Francisco, CA, USA
Home Page:

How long have you been using Python?

Since the fall of 2000

How long have you been a core committer?

Since April 2003 (shortly after PyCon 2003).

How did you get started as a core developer? Do you remember your first commit?

I became a core developer thanks to incessantly bugging people to commit patches for me (a trick that doesn't quite work as well as it used to; perk of getting in before Python's popularity spikein 2003/2004). Starting in August 2002 I revitalized the Python-Dev Summaries (which lasted for about 2.5 years). While writing the Summaries I would fairly regularly pick up on little issues that needed fixing. Since I was already talking on python-dev fairly regularly I simply asked folks to check my patches and commit them for me. One day Guido just asked why I didn't commit myself, I said I didn't have commit rights, and then he more or less said "you do now".

As for my first commit (changeset 28686), it was fixing some string escapement in time.strptime() (which happens to be my first contribution to Python itself).

Which parts of Python are you working on now?

I typically focus on the import machinery and making the Python language work well across all VMs.

What do you do with Python when you aren't doing core development work?

I managed to use Python a little bit in my PhD thesis by implementing some server-side stuff in Python. Otherwise all of my personal projects use Python as much as possible. And my future job at Google is going to be mostly in Python.

What do you do when you aren't programming?

I'm somewhat of a movie junkie with selective bits of TV tossed in (losing my television in the summer of 2000 to a heat wave was one of the best things that ever accidentally happened to me; marrying my wife has been the best thing I did on purpose =). Otherwise I read a lot; mostly magazines and websites, but with some book always under progress.