Python 3.2 is out, many fixes and improvements but no syntax changes

A new version of the Python programming language was released over the weekend.

The new release is version 3.2, which provides a significant set of updates over Python 3.1. The most commonly used branch of Python remains the older 2.7, which from now will only have bug fix releases. None of the features introduced in Python 3.2 will be ported back to the 2.x branch.

The most significant changes in Python 3.2 relate to built-in modules; the unittest module, which enables efficient unit test building, has had some significant overhauls. The email, sysconfig and ssl modules have also had compatibility improvements that bring them in line with newer features of Python 3.1. There has also been a lot of work put into string / byte issues, of which there were many, in addition to other improvements across the board.

There are no language syntax changes in this release of Python. This is due to an agreement in the Python development community to freeze the language syntax for two years from the release of Python 3.1 in order to allow other implementations of the Python language syntax to catch up with the main implementation. Unless the Python 3.3 release is brought forward, there will be language changes permitted in that future version.

Python is used across a wide range of projects; it is compatible with most modern operating systems, and is used for tasks as varied as embedded systems, web servers and code for the Google App Engine platform. The new release is available from the Python site.

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