Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
Python Programming in your Browser: PythonAnywhere (pythonanywhere.com)
147 points by J3L2404 on Apr 29, 2012 | hide | past | favorite | 35 comments

I'm not paying for something I can have anywhere I want already for nothing.

EDIT: To clear this up - installing python on your computer is cheaper, has better support, no limits, is far faster interactively and has really good support.

I know people are going to say "what about iOS/Android" but why the hell would you want to write anything on those devices.

I see the paid plans as a "support us" tier. You can do everything you want to mess around with the free plan.

> I know people are going to say "what about iOS/Android" but why the hell would you want to write anything on those devices.

Writing on an iPad is very convenient. I would love to transfer as much work as I can on iPads (from laptops).

And replying to your child:

> I was thinking the same thing. Seems like a niche idea that only people with money to burn and nothing better to do would buy into.

Money to burn, really? $10/month for people in an industry where earning $8000/month is the norm? If anything it might be too low.

My dev 'workstation' sometimes consists of Linode, SSH & a tablet. That will get you working quite effectively on an iPad.

That isn't "working on an iPad". That's a dumb terminal.

For those of us who can't rely on a permanent connection, it's a useless and somewhat risky concept.

$10 a month buys me root on a server capable of running real-world applications. Scaling $10 a month for a Python terminal vs. $10 a month for a fully configurable operating system is a tough pill to swallow.

If it were $10 a year then maybe we're talking? I mean, I personally wouldn't pay for it, but it certainly changes the mechanics.

Wait, there's no Python interpreter for Android? Really? I even had Python on my old Nokia S60 Symbian ...

Sure there is. See scripting layer for Android: http://code.google.com/p/android-scripting/

really? where? I'm curious.

For example,


I don't really see the comparison. How is that similar to a fully hosted shell with access to the underlying filesystem?

It's not the same. I've been looking for something like this for a while, and as long as the free plan stays free I don't see why it wouldn't be quite useful.

If you just want a REPL, you can get that actually running in your browser with http://repl.it/

With the emergence and success of services like Heroku for simplified development and hosting, I am pretty sure this is the next natural step. I think these kind of services, with development, revision system, deployment, hosting all integrated, with be huge within a year or two.

What if it becomes the dominant way of developing software? In that case, Apple might finally lock down the Mac since people can just visit "xcode.apple.com" or whatever.

This is certainly impressive to play around. However, what I would look forward for is a ssh connection from my laptop. With increasing connection there is a latency with what I typed and what appears in screen.

I noticed the below when I clicked on console. "Starting encrypted connection to consoles-1.pythonanywhere.com on port 443". So I tried the below command.

  $ ssh guru@consoles-1.pythonanywhere.com
  The authenticity of host 'consoles-1.pythonanywhere.com (' can't be established.
  RSA key fingerprint is d5:50:bd:8e:23:eb:14:3f:cf:15:87:42:0b:bf:e2:60.
  Are you sure you want to continue connecting (yes/no)? yes
  Warning: Permanently added 'consoles-1.pythonanywhere.com,'   (RSA) to the list of known hosts.
  guru@consoles-1.pythonanywhere.com's password:

and failed with the password I used to create the profile. I tried the ssh command with port, but did not get prompt.

  $ ssh -p 443 guru@consoles-1.pythonanywhere.com

Hi there - I'm a PythonAnywhere developer. We're working on getting SSH access supported, it's a bit tricky but we have it working in the lab so we should get it live reasonably soon.

It might just be me, but I wasn't able to get the consoles working in Opera. I had to use Firefox.

(My apologies if I'm mistaken and it does work. I enable cookies & Flash on a site by site basis, and sometimes that causes problems. I turned them both on, though, and it just stays stuck at "Starting encrypted connection to consoles-1.pythonanywhere.com on port 443".)

We're looking into that, hopefully we'll get it fixed soon, but it's a problem in a third-party library we depend on so it's proving harder to fix than we'd hoped.

Is this essentially a VPS with python batteries included? If so, if my app on PythonAnywhere gets slammed by HN how quickly can you respond with extra provisioning?

Also, do you have scipy installed, too?

It's a bit more and less than that. Console sessions run in what amounts to a VPS (it's a bit lighter-weight than that so that we can keep the costs down) but your web apps run in chrooted subprocesses of an Apache server as a limited-privileges Linux user. So, in theory your own web app should be just as capable of staying up through an HN storm as our own server. In practise... we're still polishing the security code, so it's possible to configure your web app framework so that it uses enough threads that our per-user resource limitations kick in and stop it from running.

A shorter answer -- we want our users web apps to have no problem handling spikes in usage, but might not quite be there yet.

And yes, we have scipy -- there's a list of all of the packages we support here: http://www.pythonanywhere.com/batteries_included/

Thanks for the update. I am eager to use it. :)

My phone and tablet all have ssh. With that, GNU Screen and Emacs, I'm perfectly happy.

The hosting part is intriguing.

Looks cool. Do you provide APIs? I can support it in my iPad IDE app, worqshop.com

That sounds like a great idea! Drop us a line at developers@pythonanywhere.com and let's talk about what would be involved.

I'm tempted to sign up but I really don't see how this could be useful to me. I take my computer everywhere I go when I'm coding. I don't even like the idea of developing somewhere other than on my computer. Quite a few people over here have expressed similar feelings - I believe this is how most developers roll.

I won't be surprised if hosting and easy deployment evolves to become the key value proposition for these guys. They seem a talented bunch - the like that can pull it off. And I must say, the product does seem vaguely reminiscent of Heroku's early days.

Sounds cool but I can't open the webpage on my motorola photon. The browser app crash completely. I tried with the stock browser and dolphin.

Did anybody got it working on Android?

PythonAnywhere developer here - sorry about that. we discovered just the other day that our recent site redesign (which was in part to better support iPads) makes the ICS browser very unhappy, so I guess that's what your phone has? We'll get it fixed ASAP. It should work just fine on Honeycomb and earlier.

Iam trying to open from my Macbook pro and the safari browser keeps crashing. Is there a issue with safari?

Not that we know of, but we'll definitely look into it! If you could drop us a line at support@pythonanywhere.com with your OS and browser versions then we'll try to repro.

Crashed my kindle fire browser!

I admire anyone who builds anything but, with respect... what unsolved problem does this solve? I can already program Python anywhere where I have a laptop or remote SSH session. And that's basically anywhere I want already. And in the situations where I can't have a laptop or SSH session, I almost always won't have a web browser either.

I might try using this to teach Python to kids in our homeschool group. I haven't kicked the tires yet, but it sounds like it might be a really easy way to get a bunch of sharable environments set up for a class.

I submitted this a week ago and I titled it "Python Anywhere. Share Python/Bash/SQL console instances.".

Easy pair programming or tutoring on a shared REPL, VIM or some other editor is what I see as the main selling point of it.

Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | API | Security | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact