Saturday 4:30 p.m.–5 p.m.

Fast Python, Slow Python

Alex Gaynor

Audience level:
Best Practices & Patterns


The common wisdom is that Python is slow. And yet people run high performance software on it. It's hard to make Python fast, and yet there are incredibly high performance Python VMs. This talk breaks down the facts and the myths of Python performance.


This talk broadly has two parts: things people think make Python slow, and why those aren't true. And common practices people have in their code (often under the guise of "writing idiomatic Python") which do lead to slow performance. This talk attacks the notion that things like dynamic typing, boxing, and GC make Python slow. And instead lays the blame at our feet, at the code we write, the way we write code differently from programmers in other languages. You'll leave this talk with a better understanding of how the code you write affects the performance of your applications.