grammar fascist writes: Guido van Rossum, BDFL (Benevolent Dictator for Life) of the Python programming language, has posted a comprehensive status report on the progress of Python's next incarnation, including a tentative release schedule. Python 3.0 alpha could be available as early as August this year, with the final release a year from then. This is probably the last chance Python has of any significant language overhaul — meaning a significant break in compatibility with earlier versions. (A fairly thorough conversion tool will be supplied.) Lists of regrets and wishes have been made into language enhancements, including Unicode strings (bytes objects will be used for binary data), class decorators, function argument annotations (no implicit type enforcement), dynamic specification of base classes, Abstract Base Classes (not strict and bondage-y as in Java), true multiple dispatch (called "generic functions"), exception reform, int/long unification, and much more. Whom to thank? Besides Guido and the core Python developers and designers, Google. They hired him to spend half his time on Python.