I wrote this for segfault.org in May, 2000. I think I was living in London at the time.
segfault.org was a nerd satire site, based on the style of slashdot that was popular in the late 90s and early 00s. It was founded and run by the internet’s Leonard Richardson and Scott James Remnant. segfault accepted reader submissions and they were kind enough to publish about a few by yours truly.
Links to the post made it to a couple of Python mailing lists and Guido van Rossum kinda, sorta responded.
In a press conference held early this morning, Guido van Rossum, creator of the Python programming language Python, announced that his most famous project will be undergoing a name change. The new name for the language is Homer.
Python was originally named after the British comedy show Monty Python’s Flying Circus. Today Mr. van Rossum told reporters he had “gone off Python” and enjoyed watching reruns of the Simpsons. “I caught a Simpsons marathon last weekend – that Homer, he’s so useless and so funny. And that Bart, what a little rascal,” said van Rossum.
Mr. van Rossum denied that the name change was bcause former Flying Circus member John Cleese has repeatedly declined invitations to come round one evening for some pizza, a few beers and some late night hacking.
“No no,” he insisted. “I’m just sick of reading ‘I fart in your general direction’ on the error messages of every second Python program I use. I want some new jokes, and the Simpsons will provide them.”
As well as the name change it appears the Python organization will be getting a new sponsor – Fox TV. Australian-born Fox boss Rupert Murdoch explained:
“Yeah mate, Disney have got that bloody Squeak so I thought we should have a language too. It’s all fair dinkum, they get money, we get ratings. And anyway, the Simpsons is a bloody laugh, not like that limey rubbish.”
There were other benefits resulting from the name change, added Mr van Rossum. “Writing comments, for instance. Not everyone understood the phrase “Luuxury” next to a variable declaration, but everyone will get “Mmmmm, integers.”
Segfault.org asked John Cleese for his comments on todays announcement:
“I’m not too worried about the name change at all. Actually, I’m glad it’s all over. Perhaps he’ll stop pestering me about his god-awful hack-a-thons. If you ask me, there’s nothing you can do in Python or Homer or whatever-it’s-bloody-called-today that can’t be done faster and more efficiently in assembly code.”
Already Homer applications are popping up on freshmeat.net. Included among them are a a program that orderes a can of pop over the Internet when the TAB key is pressed, and a script that scans comments and replaces the word “Ni!” with “Doh!”