Sun hires Python pros in dynamic languages push

Company hires Python gurus Ted Leung and Frank Wierzbicki to further its open-source development strategy.

Correction 10:45 a.m. PST: This blog initially misspelled the name of one of the Python programmers hired by Sun. His name is Frank Wierzbicki.

Sun Microsystems has hired high-profile Python programmers Ted Leung and Frank Wierzbicki, stepping up its bet on open source and scripting languages.

Sun has already hired other open-source luminaries such as Debian Linux founder Ian Murdock, in an effort to capitalize on open source and diversify beyond its roots in Java and Solaris.

Python is one of several dynamic, or scripting, languages that have grown in popularity over the past several years. Developers are using scripting languages, such as PHP or Python, in some cases over Java, which is considered more complicated and harder to learn.

Leung, well known for his work with XML and Python, will join Sun as "principal engineer, dynamic languages and tools," he said in his blog Monday, which means that he'll be working with other dynamic languages.

"Sun is (finally?) very serious about this. As part of Sun's new direction, Sun wants to give developers the ability to use whatever tool sets they want. Ruby, Python, PHP, Java. On or off OpenSolaris. On or off the JVM (Java virtual machine)," he wrote.

Wierzbicki is the lead implementer on the Jython project for making Python run on the Java virtual machine.

"Jython is going to remain completely open source....This move by Sun means that Jython is going to get some of the attention that it needs to move forward," he wrote in his blog.

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