Friday, May 19, 2017

2017 Frank Willson Memorial Award Goes To Katie Cunningham And Barbara Shaurette

Every year the Python Software Foundation awards the Frank Willison Memorial Award to a member(s) of the Python community. The purpose of this award is to recognize the outstanding contributions that Python community members have made having began as an award, “established in memory of Frank Willison, a Python enthusiast and O'Reilly editor-in-chief, who died in July 2001”.

The Python Software Foundation has awarded the 2017 Frank Willison Award to Katie Cunningham and Barbara Shaurette in recognition of their work creating Young Coders classes.  Cunningham and Shaurette have gone above and beyond making the Young Coders teaching materials freely available.

The program began at PyCon 2013 in Santa Clara and was an immediate success. The follow-up blog post is the second most popular post in PyCon's history by a wide margin. Additionally the event was one of the most talked about topics of the 2013 conference.

Lynn Root and Jesse Noller pitched the idea to Cunningham asking her to lead it. Cunningham  then reached out to Shaurette seeking her assistance, or as she said, “Omg help!”

Shaurette has experience teaching early childhood education. Her experience teaching younger students came in handy as she reworked materials used for adult classes into the materials the program uses today. The class includes Raspberry Pis, keyboards, and a mouse that the students were allowed to take with them, along with two books Python for Kids and Hello World! Computer Programming for Kids and Other Beginners.

The first class for students aged 10 to 12 did not go without hitches.  That year there were a lot of technical issues with the Raspberry Pis. Noah Kantrowitz saved the day helping Cunningham and Barbara getting the Raspberry Pi’s set up. “The setup is a little complex, but he set the guidelines for what equipment we use, and how we plan the classroom every year,” Shaurette said.

“There were moments setting up that I said, ‘I don’t know if this is going to work,” Cunningham  recalls.

That first class was eight hours. Then Katie and Barbara wrapped up and did it again the next day for a second a time with a whole new class.

By the end of the first day it was already a noted success. “The enthusiasm around it was insane. People were so excited that we were doing it. We were off in our own corner and not central to the conference, but people were stopping by and peeking in,” Cunningham  explains.

Once the kids were let loose to experiment, they tried all sorts of things.  “I don't think you'd ever see that kind of experimentation in a classroom full of adults, who would more likely do everything in their power not to break their computers,”  Shaurette wrote of the kids’ ability to learn, write, and run code.

The second day was a whole new class, but this time it was a group of 13 to 16 year olds, and just as successful. “One thing that I find is how energizing the kids get at the end,” Cunningham said.

Not long after that, Young Coders was approached by the PyOhio and PyTennessee organizers. Both conferences have held Young Coders nearly every year since.  Brad Montgomery has taken over responsibility in PyTennessee, but  Cunningham  still runs the workshop at PyOhio.

Since the start of the program  Cunningham  and Shaurette have taught over 400 kids!

We thank Cunningham and Shaurette  for their work in actively promoting and teaching Python to a new generation of programmers.

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Attending PyCon 2017? Consider Becoming a Sponsor!

As PyCon approaches, we would like to invite attendees and members of our community to join the Python Software Foundation as a sponsor. Your generous support enables the PSF’s mission to promote, protect, and advance the Python programming language.

Thanks to our current sponsors, some of our recent accomplishments include:

  • Organizing successful PyCons. Last year’s event brought together 3,388 attendees from 49 countries, a new record for PyCon! Our sponsors’ support enabled us to award $94,000.00 USD in financial aid to 142 attendees who would not otherwise have been able to attend. This year we were able to  expand upon our financial aid by awarding $111,653.00 USD to 194 attendees.
  • Hiring more staff. In addition to adding more blog writers to keep the public aware of the most recent PSF news, we have added an IT Manager to help maintain our growing infrastructure, as well as an additional accountant to deal with the high demand of requests for financial support from all over the world.
  • Funding great projects. So far this year we have approved $70,000.00 USD in grants to over 60 events. At this rate 2017 will surpass last year’s total of $265,000.00 USD in grants to 137 events in 45 different countries.
  • Acknowledging awesome Python contributors. Community Service Awards are given out quarterly, honoring individuals who support our mission. Read about recent CSA recipients on our blog.
  • Implementing a Python Ambassador program. This program provides funding for ambassadors to travel locally to perform Python outreach. This is currently in trial mode in South America and is going very well. If the trend continues, we will expand this program to additional locales.

We plan to continue our efforts in the coming years by developing fiscal sponsorship support for Python projects, implementing a Customer Relationship Management system to better communicate with individual PSF members, and continuing to support Python programmers worldwide.

We love to hear from happy sponsors about why they contribute to the PSF. Here are what a few have to say:

"ActiveState is proud to be a founding member and continued supporter of PSF. We recognize how important Python is for developers, IT administrators and data scientists--it continues to evolve and grow in popularity as a very powerful language with many use cases. We're excited about its future and helping the foundation's goal in advancing the language."
- Bart Copeland, ActiveState President & CEO

“Sponsoring PSF brings tremendous opportunities for the entire Python community to actively participate, connect, and engage in many meaningful ways. It’s an opportunity to enrich the language by encouraging active dialogue on future directions, and to nurture compelling new ideas and projects, support the accompanying logistics and infrastructure needs, and uphold the open source values of the community. Intel continues to foster innovation with Python and is committed to contributing to the growth of this vibrant ecosystem.”
- Sonali DeSouza, Product Manager - Intel® Python & Scripting tools team

“‘Work on stuff that matters’ is one of O’Reilly’s core principles, and we know how very much open source matters. The open source community spurs innovation, shares knowledge, encourages growth, and creates industries. The Python Software Foundation is a prime example of the power of open source, showing how focused, thoughtful, and consistent efforts can create  a community whose impact extends far beyond meetups and lines of code. O'Reilly is proud to continue to sponsor this great foundation."
- Rachel Roumeliotis, Strategic Content Director at O'Reilly and Chair of OSCON

“Delivering digital projects in Python is the core of our business; it solves the needs of our clients. The PSF does a fantastic job of protecting and investing in the future of Python. Sponsoring the PSF is how we not only give back for the past, but also protect our future.”
- Steve Hawkes, Director, Blanc LTD

If you value what we do at PSF, we hope that you too will consider becoming a sponsor. For details about PSF Sponsorship and to get started, please visit our Sponsors page.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Brian Costlow, “the quietly amazing rock” Python volunteer: Community Service Award Recipient

Brian began volunteering unofficially, when he threw out a pile of pizza boxes. He was at PyOhio in 2009 when, as Brian recalls, “Lunch was delivered pizza and the organizers had to clean up after the conference. I felt bad that I had attended a great event, entirely free, so I started to help them sweep the floors and throw away the pizza boxes." The next two years Brian worked the conference as a volunteer. In 2012 he joined the organizing committee and he went on to chair the conference in 2014, 2015, and 2016.


The Python Software Foundation is pleased to present Brian Costlow with the 2017 Quarter 1 Community Service Award for:

RESOLVED, that the Python Software Foundation award the 2017 Q1 Community Service Award to Brian Costlow for his work organizing PyOhio, chairing PyOhio, and for being the head volunteer for PyCon US captioning.


A Jack-Of-All-Trades PyOhio Organizer


“I was working in IT for a large printing and media company when I started to use Python for a number of projects. I joined the Ohio Python Mailing List and when the planning for the first PyOhio began, I made plans to attend,” Brian recalls. Regrettably Brian was unable to attend the inaugural PyOhio conference. He did, however, attend the second PyOhio, where his volunteerism began with a simple act of cleaning empty pizza boxes. Since 2010 Brian has worked alongside PyOhio organizers like Catherine Devlin and Eric Floehr, the founder of the Central Ohio Python User Group, chairing the conference, recruiting workshops, seeking new speakers.


Katie Cunningham, one of the leaders of the Young Coders project, first met Brian when he invited Young Coders to join PyOhio. During their first year Young Coders encountered a few technical hiccups. Cunningham recalls, “Brian wasn’t fazed. He helped keep the room together." She adds that “he is one of those quietly amazing people who quickly goes from someone you know to someone you couldn't do without. In an industry rife with people who tend to be a bit flighty, he's a rock”.


On a personal note, I first attended PyOhio in 2015 as both an inaugural speaker and attendee. I was terrified. Following my talk I had the pleasure to meet Brian. He was excited to hear about my experience as a novice speaker and we continued our discussion after the conference. Brian has been continuously interested in learning how to recruit more women and underrepresented individuals to both attend and speak at PyOhio. What makes PyOhio unique as a place to begin one’s speaking or Python career is the simple fact that PyOhio is free to attend. According to Brian, PyOhio never deliberately set out to be accessible, “it just happened organically because the Python community really is a community, and we all wanted to give back to the community that gave so much to us”.


Continuing to Give Back at PyCon through Captioning


Brandon Rhodes, PyCon 2016 and 2017 chair, reached out to Brian a year early in 2015 seeking assistance with captioning. Brian, mindful of Rhodes's support for PyOhio, says, “Brandon has always been a great friend to PyOhio. So when he was selected as chair for PyCon 2016 and 2017, I reached out and said if there was anything I could help him with, I would gladly do it."


Captioning was a remote volunteer position in 2015. “Brian first helped out in Montreal and then took the lead in 2016 at Portland. Every year Brian takes part in the process, takes careful observations, and notes what works and what doesn’t,” Ewa Jodlowska explains. Given some of Brian’s feedback and other lessons learned at 2015 the PyCon organizing team opened to turn the captioning position into a staff position. “We learn lots year after year and make several improvements thanks to Brian's involvement,” Jodlowska adds.


Brian continues to work with the captioning staff team. He says, “If someone wants to get involved, just reach out to Ewa or me, we're always open to suggestions for improvement!"


Brian Costlow, by his willingness to work behind the scenes on jobs big and small, demonstrates the spirit of Python's community. It’s about supporting one another and always looking forward to doing things better and bigger that makes the community so vibrant.


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Look for Brian at PyCon 2017! He may just want to share with you some exciting ways you can help with PyCon captioning in the future.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Community Service Award Recipient Ian Cordasco

The Python Software Foundation depends on its board of directors in order to function. Board members are elected every year by PSF voting members in a process run internally by non-board members. Ian Cordasco has been the PSF’s Election Administrator since 2015, volunteering his efforts for this important role. Cordasco is also a valuable member of the Python community, frequently mentoring newer coders and supporting their Python endeavors. For these reasons, the PSF is delighted to award the 2017 QA Community Service award to Ian Cordasco:


RESOLVED that the Python Software Foundation award the 2017 Q1 Community Service Award to Ian Cordasco for his contributions to PSF elections and active mentoring of women in Python community.


PSF Elections


Cordasco began as the PSF’s Election Administrator during a time of turmoil. “The first year I ran the election was something of a nightmare,” he recalls. Due to unforeseen circumstances, the previous Election Administrator stepped down on short notice and was unavailable to relaunch the election efforts. “Many people did not get ballots via email as they should. Some people were accidentally excluded from the voting rolls. Further, there was a lot of confusion because I stepped in at the last minute.” Without the aid of documentation and prior experience, Ian threw himself into the cause. The PSF has since reviewed, solidified, and documented the election procedures.


Since his dramatic start as Elections Administrator, Cordasco’s work with PSF elections has been much smoother. Mark Mangoba, PSF’s IT Manager, works closely with Cordasco during the election process. Mangoba notes, “Ian is a great volunteer. He does an excellent job with the elections, assuring that all votes are accounted for and that there is no fraud or issues of any kind.” Cordasco has also gotten creative with how he manages elections. For example, to reduce bias, he uses Python code to break ties and to randomize the order in which candidates appear to voters. Additionally, those that work with Cordasco describe him as an enjoyable collaborator. Mangoba explains, “Ian is energetic and thoughtful. His passion and enthusiasm for the PSF shows through, he’s always available to help and answer questions.”


Mentoring


Cordasco has a history of going out of his way to support and encourage female developers. When Carol Willing, a developer for the Jupyter project, wanted to work on the Requests library, she got in touch with Cordasco. “We worked together on the project and my first commit to the Requests library got accepted!” Cordasco later wrote a fantastic post about it on his blog.


Cordasco has also found newer coders to mentor at Python events, such as Anna Ossowski. “I met Ian at PyTennessee 2015, a day before I was scheduled to give my very first ever conference talk. Ian’s encouragement and support helped me a lot and it’s thanks to him and Carol [Willing] that I had the confidence to go up on stage and deliver my talk.” But his support didn’t stop there, Ossowski goes on to say, “every week he would reserve an hour for me where we would program together, he would answer questions, and just generally help me with any programming issues I experienced. Ian helped me get the PyLadies Remote website up and running, something I would have never managed without his help.”


Adrienne Lowe, a developer at Emma, has also enjoyed Cordasco’s support and encouragement. She recalls, “He models the kind of developer that we all want to be in terms of being encouraging and open.” She continues, “he sets himself apart by being genuine, welcoming, and happy to explain anything from simple things to more complex concepts, all in an ego-less way.”


The Python community as a whole is very lucky to count Cordasco as its member, and we hope he continues to help others contribute and achieve their goals.


CSA 2017 Q1 Winner Ian Cordasco

In his free time, you can find Cordasco blogging on his website, riding his bike, or reading books.

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

Pay What You Want for "The Humble Book Bundle: Python" and Benefit the PSF

Pay what you want for a stack of Python ebooks from No Starch Press, and decide what portion goes to the PSF. This deal is presented by Humble Bundle, which sells ebooks and games to raise money for nonprofits. When you buy a bundle you choose how much to pay, and how the money is divided among the creators, Humble Bundle, Inc., and the nonprofit organization.

The Humble Book Bundle: Python is available now through April 19th. Pay a dollar or more for these three books:

If you choose to pay $8 or more, you also receive:

If you pay more than $15 you get all of the above, plus:



To help the PSF and get a stack of fun and useful Python books at a price you decide, buy the bundle before April 19th!

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Python at Google Summer of Code: Apply by April 3



Google Summer of Code (GSoC) is a global program that offers post-secondary students an opportunity to be paid for contributing to an open source project over a three-month period. Since 2005, the Python Software Foundation (PSF) has served as an "umbrella organization" to a variety of Python-related projects, as well as sponsoring projects related to the development of the Python language.

April 3rd is the last date for student applications for GSoC 2017. You can view all the sub-orgs under PSF and see what projects are seeking applications, then go to the Google Summer of Code site to submit your application.

Questions?

To ask questions about specific projects, go to the sub-orgs page and click "Contact" under the project you want to ask about.

The student application deadline is April 3, and decisions will be announced on May 4.


Timeline for Google Summer of Code 2017

Friday, March 10, 2017

Ernest takes the call - Community Service Award Recipient Ernest Durbin III

The day was October 23, 2015, Friday afternoon. The PSF and PyCon organizers were busy pulling together sponsors for the upcoming PyCon conference when suddenly, the ancient mail server 'albatross' suffered a hard disk crash. Email was down, grant requests would not go through, and PyCon planning was at a stand still. To make matters worse, most of the volunteers who had helped set up the initial mail server were away. Something had to be done, and fast. Ernest Durbin, a volunteer systems admin, took the call. With no documentation on how to fix the existing mail server, he worked diligently through the weekend to rebuild it. Thanks to Ernest’s hard work and dedication, the PSF and PyCon US were able to resume operations before the following Monday.


For his enthusiasm and years of volunteering, the Python Software Foundation awards the 4th Quarter 2016 Community Service Award to Ernest Durbin III:


RESOLVED, that the Python Software Foundation award the 4th Quarter 2016 Community Service Award to Ernest W. Durbin III. Ernest has been a dedicated volunteer of the PSF for several years. Countless times he has triaged PSF infrastructure. Beyond that, Ernest has been a key person in creating structure for our infrastructure. Not only does that include internal infrastructure such as mail.python.org, that also includes external infrastructure such as PyPI. Recently, Ernest has also accepted the position of PyCon 2017 US co-chair and PyCon 2018/19 conference chair.


Durbin’s involvement in PSF began in 2012. He recalls, “A friend of mine submitted a proposal and we were selected for the task.” After a few months of doing paid work for the PSF, he realized that he would be more comfortable volunteering his time, and has been doing so ever since. “Ernest has been a huge help with the growth of PSF's infrastructure,” says Ewa Jodlowska, Director of Operations at PSF. “[He] ensures that we are keeping best practices and that the knowledge of proper processes is passed on. I am grateful that he has been able to lend his expertise in such a way.”


In addition to providing volunteer technical support for the PSF, Durbin has also become a Python community organizer. He will serve as co-chair of PyCon 2017 and has taken on the responsibilities of full conference chair for PyCon 2018 and 2019. He is also an organizer for his local Python meetup group.


When asked about why Durbin chooses to promote Python and the PSF Durbin responded, “Python has been my language of choice for most of my career,” adding that he “has always appreciated the great breadth and depth of experience in the Python community as represented by the available packages on PyPI. It is such a testament to the community's collective knowledge and generosity when nine times out of ten you can find something that fulfills your need.”


As for the email server incident, Durbin simply brushes off the stress explaining “it was a great way to meet new folks in the Python community and work with them towards a common goal.”
Ernest Durbin, CSA Winner 2016 Q4
When not programming, you can find Durbin out in his garage working on his 1960’s era SAABs or hosting Taco Tuesdays for large groups of friends.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Discovering the Python Community in Zimbabwe at their first PyCon

On the heels of attending a successful PyCon in Namibia in 2015, a small group of Python enthusiasts in Harare, Zimbabwe vowed to organize the first-ever PyCon held in Zimbabwe.

After months of planning on November 25th, 2016 they achieved their goal in dramatic fashion with an enormously successful sold-out conference at the ZESA National Training Center in Harare. I was privileged to give the keynote to an extremely attentive audience. For an hour, we had a tremendous time in discussing how to contribute to open-source successfully and how to grow ideas into successful open-source projects.


In all my years of speaking, I've never had such an incredible audience. Often at technical conferences audience members are more engaged with their smartphones than the speaker. Not so at PyConZim! Questions were thoughtful and engaging. Truly a pleasure.

Throughout the conference many enjoyable talks were given. I enjoyed Dennis Murekachiro's inspiring talk on how to be a game-changer as he encouraged Zimbabwe technologists not to settle for "good enough" but to work hard to use technology to better themselves and the communities they live in. Tendai Marengerke's talk on how to create reproducible research in Python was absolutely fascinating; it's a must-watch for anybody using Python in an academic setting.

Petrus Janse van Rensburg from South Africa gave an outstanding overview of challenges that low-bandwidth connections create in Africa and how he is working to solve them by re-designing the way e-commerce platforms operate. I can virtually guarantee we'll be hearing a more about him and his work in the coming months and years.

One of the most astonishing things about PyConZim is the way in which every single attendee is brilliant and, without fail, engaged with pragmatic ideas about how to use Python to make a better life for their communities. One could go to every PyCon on Earth and never find one as inspiring as PyCon Zimbabwe.

The highlight for me, though, was having the chance to meet Marlene Hangami and Ronald Maravanyika.
Marlene and Ronald have single-handedly started an organization to teach Python to young girls across Zimbabwe.

Fueled by a desire to simply improve the lives of girls in their country, they've started free workshops in community centers and now operate in over forty community centers across the country.
They've had to battle a number of difficult obstacles that would discourage most people but they're continuing on.
As a direct result of my trip to PyConZim, I've started working with Ronald and Marlene to start a program to bring female software developers to Zimbabwe to work with selected girls on Python-based projects to help out in their communities.

Mentors participate in projects that girls work on by volunteering as little as four hours of their time and conduct their mentorship via video-conference and email. It's a very simple way to advance the case for women in technology in Africa and beyond. More information on mentorship programs and application information is available here.

My humble thanks to everybody at the Python Software Foundation for sponsoring my trip to Zimbabwe and for sponsoring the conference itself.


Friday, February 03, 2017

Pythonistas (and a Python!) at PyCon Jamaica


This past November marked the first PyCon Jamaica. Held in the capital, Kingston, the conference began on November 17th with a day of tutorials followed by a single track of talks on November 18th. I attended both as a representative of the Python Software Foundation, which sponsored the conference, and as a speaker.

Python in Kingston’s Higher Education 


Kingston, home to approximately 33% of Jamaicans, boasts several institutions of higher learning including the Caribbean Maritime Institute and the Mona campus of the University of the West Indies. PyCon Jamaica kicked off with tutorials at the University of the West Indies. Most of the tutorials focused on introductory topics (e.g. Introduction to Plone). Participants came from a wide range of backgrounds including mechanical engineers or undergraduates with a marketing concentration. Interestingly I was informed Python isn’t a part of the standard computer science offering at the university yet it has become a language of considerable interest in many of Kingston’s professional sectors.


David Bain, organizer of PyCon Jamaica and the local Python Jamaica user group, explained that he thinks the interest in Python has risen as students have become increasingly exposed to web technologies. Bain added that PyCon Jamaica is a way to help demonstrate to students and professionals the various applications Python has. "Jamaica wants to be seen as a viable source for local and North American nearshore developer talent, our event signals that software development talent is here," Bain explained.

Modernizing the Public Sector with Python


Conference talks were held at the Hope Zoo, a facility housing vast botanical gardens, a zoo, and a community center. There were three international speakers, Joir-dan Gumbs of IBM, Star Ying of the US Dept of Commerce, and myself, alongside several local speakers. The tutorials had been more student-centric, but the conference catered to those using Python in the Jamaican public sector.


A common theme from local speakers highlighted how Python has helped local professionals modernize outdated practices. Marc Murray of the Jamaican Ministry of Health described how he has used Python throughout his career of fifteen-plus years to automate processes and enable better data collection and data sharing. More than one speaker acknowledged that struggle of institutional knowledge silos in the local government. With Python, though, these knowledge silos have started to be disrupted. Agencies are able to share the same data sets with greater ease and promote transparency.

Python's data-processing power was the star in a talk by student Dominic Mills. Mills recently completed an internship at CERN, where he built a Django prototype for debugging hardware in future experiments. Crucial to this project was not only the collection of data via Celery but the capacity to analyze it. Mills used bokeh for real time analysis of the sensor data, permitting monitoring and alarms to be raised if unfavorable conditions were found.


Collectively the speakers at PyCon Jamaica reflect how Jamaican programmers are embracing Python for data collection and analysis in a variety of specialties. Python’s open source packages and rich community support seemed to be its biggest selling points. Speaker Joir-dan Gumbs commented that, “the best part for me was the presentations of how Python is enhancing the lives of Jamaicans, as well as the networking.”



I’m excited to see what PyCon Jamaica 2017 will hold. Already the conference is rich in data science and data visualization content. After all, if PyCon Jamaica 2016 included an appearance from the Hope Zoo’s own python what will we see next? Perhaps two pythons, and of course many more Jamaican Pythonistas.







Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Time To Upgrade Your Python: TLS v1.2 Will Soon Be Mandatory

If you're using an older Python without the most secure TLS implementation, this is the year to get serious about upgrading. Otherwise next June you may not be able to "pip install" packages from PyPI.

PyPI's maintainer Donald Stufft recently announced that python.org and related sites will begin disabling the old TLS versions 1.0 and 1.1. This change was imposed on us by our content delivery network, Fastly, in response to a change imposed on them by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council. In order to continue serving websites that take credit card payments, Fastly is required to disable the old, insecure versions of TLS. Since the PSF's servers, including PyPI, use Fastly, the old versions of TLS will be disabled as well.

Fastly wrote in October 2015,
There have been serious and systemic security issues with earlier versions of TLS and its predecessor, SSL, including POODLE, Heartbleed, and LOGJAM. These threatened to break trust in fundamental methods of secure communication, exposing both you and your customers to breaches in security. The actions of the PCI DSS Council to maintain a high minimum bar are a step towards ensuring the security of all online business transactions.
There are two deadlines to upgrade your Python to a version with the latest TLS. The first comes soon, on April 30, 2017, when python.org sites without Extended Validation Certificates will stop supporting TLS 1.0 and 1.1. These sites include:

  • testpypi.python.org
  • test.pypi.org
  • files.pythonhosted.org

Warehouse, the future successor to PyPI, will also be affected by April's deadline, since Warehouse serves files from files.pythonhosted.org.

The more crucial deadline comes June 30, 2018. On that date all remaining python.org sites, including PyPI, will no longer support TSL 1.0 and 1.1. Older Python versions that do not implement TLSv1.2 will be prohibited from accessing PyPI.

See below for instructions to check your interpreter's TLS version. 1

Stufft writes, "I am going to see about possibly organizing some scheduled 'brown outs' of TLSv1.0 and TLSv1.1 prior to the cut off dates to try and help folks find places that will need updates. Any scheduled brownouts will be posted to status.python.org prior to happening."

Mac users should pay special attention. So far, the system Python shipped with MacOS does not yet support TLSv1.2 in any MacOS version; beginning next June these system Pythons will no longer be able to "pip install" packages. 2 Fortunately, it's easy to install a modern Python alongside the MacOS system Python. Either download Python 3.6 from python.org, or for Python 2.7 with the latest TLS, use Homebrew. Both methods of installing Python will continue working after June 2018.



1. To check your Python interpreter's TLS version, install the "requests" package and run a command. For example, for Python 2:

python2 -m pip install --upgrade requests
python2 -c "import requests; print(requests.get('https://www.howsmyssl.com/a/check', verify=False).json()['tls_version'])"

Or Python 3:

python3 -m pip install --upgrade requests
python3 -c "import requests; print(requests.get('https://www.howsmyssl.com/a/check', verify=False).json()['tls_version'])"

If you see "TLS 1.2", your interpreter's TLS is up to date. If you see "TLS 1.0" or an error like "tlsv1 alert protocol version", then you must upgrade.

2. The reason Python's TLS implementation is falling behind on macOS is that Python continues to use OpenSSL, which Apple has stopped updating on macOS. In the coming year, the Python Packaging Authority team will investigate porting pip to Apple's own "SecureTransport" library as an alternative to OpenSSL, which would allow old Python interpreters to use modern TLS with pip only. "This is a non-trivial amount of effort," writes Stufft, "I'm not sure it's going to get done."

In the long run, the Python interpreter itself would easily keep up with TLS versions, if it didn't use OpenSSL on platforms like macOS and Windows where OpenSSL is not shipped with the OS. Cory Benfield and Christian Heimes propose to redesign the standard library's TLS interfaces to make it easier to swap OpenSSL with platform-native TLS implementations.