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First Pythonic Award

April 1, 1998

This month, the Python Software Activity (PSA) celebrates its third birthday. It can walk and talk, and has successfully survived last year's Ousterhout wars and even the more recent indentation flamefest.

The PSA Steering Committee (that illustrious ensemble of anonymice working behind the scenes to create an illusion of unity in the Python world) has decided to do something festive to celebrate the occasion. We thought about giving every PSA member a free CD-ROM with the secret Python 2.0 distribution, but thought that it would be nicer to share with all Pythoneers, not just the paying members. After a long and not entirely democratic decision process, we agreed on the perfect gesture to give back to our community: a prize for a particularly gifted individual, someone whose outstanding contributions to the Python community inspire ooh and awe in every aspiring Pythoneer.

This would be a yearly reoccurring event, just like the Nobel prize or the Oscars. Because we are a poor bunch of schlobs (we lost $8,435.01 on the last conference), we cannot give away prize money or a medal, or even have a party. But we can erect a Shrine to the awardee on the web: web pages are cheap, and when he falls out of favor, it's easy to erase all traces.

The Steering Committee didn't have to think long who to award the first Pythonic Award to. The first choice would be our benevolent dictator, Guido van Rossum, Python's creator and most frequent contributor to the Python newsgroup. But, as Guido is a member of the Steering Committee, the other Steering Committee members deemed Guido ineligible for a prize (or rather, they wanted a share of their own). The obvious other choice was Tim Peters. Tim is not a member of the Steering Committee (this is actually an accident -- he was off the net for a few days when the Steering Committee was formed).

The PSA Steering Committee hereby awards the First Pythonic Award to Tim Peters of Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Tim Peters Shrine is erected at the following URL:

The PSA SC wishes to acknowledge Clarence Gardner for inspiring this award. His recent post entitled "Festschrift[1] zu Tim Peters (not Python related)" reminded us of Tim's awardability.