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I think you're right, only this wouldn't require breaking compatibility. It doesn't even require a python upgrade, you could just make a base class that remaps nicer named functions to the standard ones, like baseclass.is_lower_than = baseclass.__lt__

You're probably right. Sadly, the vast majority of the python upgrades probably did not require breaking compatibility. Or if they did, they weren't worth it. I understand that iterators are arguably better than lists and print should arguably be a real function, but those advantages are far too small to justify breaking compatibility.

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