Just a little fact that I learnt today and that I found satisfying. Do bare-in-mind that I am a self-declared python novice (as you will see).

I wanted to get a bit more familiar with python. I can’t remember the exact situation, I think it might have been one of the daily-programmer challenges or else something to do with python-flasks and k8s.

I was on win10 with with the Windows Subsystem for Linux/Ubuntu.

[email protected]:~$ python
The program 'python' can be found in the following packages:
 * python-minimal
 * python3
Try: sudo apt install <selected package>
[email protected]:~$ sudo apt install python3
[sudo] password for peter:
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
python3 is already the newest version (3.5.1-3).
0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
[email protected]:~$ sudo apt-get update
#huge apt-get output snipped
[email protected]:~$ sudo apt-get upgrade
#huge apt-get output snipped
[email protected]:~$ python
The program 'python' can be found in the following packages:
 * python-minimal
 * python3
Try: sudo apt install <selected package>
[email protected]:~$ python3
Python 3.5.2 (default, Nov 23 2017, 16:37:01)
[GCC 5.4.0 20160609] on linux
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.
>>> exit()

I was a little confused. Why was python not being installed? Why did I need to use the command python3?

I did a little googling, and came across some SO pages. In particular this one How can I make the python command in terminal run python3 instead of python2, which pointed to PEP 394.

It turns out it is a bona-fide python convention that python can never invoke python3. I just needed to understand even without python2 on a machine, that there are still semantic differences between python and python3.

So- I should just accept that running python3 to start python is fine :D