Items tagged async
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unasync (via) Today I started wondering out loud if one could write code that takes an asyncio Python library and transforms it into the synchronous equivalent by using some regular expressions to strip out the “await ...” keywords and suchlike. Turns out that can indeed work, and Ratan Kulshreshtha built it! unasync uses the standard library tokenize module to run some transformations against an async library and spit out the sync version automatically. I’m now considering using this for sqlite-utils. # 27th February 2021, 10:20 pm
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Inevitably we got round to talking about async. As much of an unneeded complication as it is for so many day-to-day use-cases, it’s important for Python because, if and when you do need the high throughput handling of these io-bound use-cases, you don’t want to have to switch language. The same for Django: most of what you’re doing has no need of async but you don’t want to have to change web framework just because you need a sprinkling of non-blocking IO.
I’ve identified a pattern for handling potentially-asynchronous callback functions in Python which I’m calling the “await me maybe” pattern. It works by letting you return a value, a callable function that returns a value OR an awaitable function that returns that value.[... 787 words]
Django: Added support for asynchronous views and middleware (via) An enormously consequential feature just landed in Django, and is set to ship as part of Django 3.1 in August. Asynchronous views will allow Django applications to define views using “async def myview(request)”—taking full advantage of Python’s growing asyncio ecosystem and providing enormous performance improvements for Django sites that do things like hitting APIs over HTTP. Andrew has been puzzling over this for ages and it’s really exciting to see it land in a form that should be usable in a stable Django release in just a few months. # 19th March 2020, 3:43 am
Async Support—HTTPX (via) HTTPX is the new async-friendly HTTP library for Python spearheaded by Tom Christie. It works in both async and non-async mode with an API very similar to requests. The async support is particularly interesting—it’s a really clean API, and now that Jupyter supports top-level await you can run ’(await httpx.AsyncClient().get(url)).text’ directly in a cell and get back the response. Most excitingly the library lets you pass an ASGI app directly to the client and then perform requests against it—ideal for unit tests. # 10th January 2020, 4:49 am
... the overall conclusion I reach is that we have so much to gain from making Django async-capable that it is worth the large amount of work it will take. I also believe, crucially, that we can undertake this change in an iterative, community-driven way that does not rely solely on one or two long-time contributors burning themselves out.
The ASGI specification provides an opportunity for Python to hit a productivity/performance sweet-spot for a wide range of use-cases, from writing high-volume proxy servers through to bringing large-scale web applications to market at speed.
Changelog 2018-06-12 / Observable. The ability to download an Observable notebook as a stand-alone ES module and run it anywhere using their open source runtime is fascinating, but it’s also worth reading the changelog for some of the new clever tricks they are pulling using await—“await visibility();” in a notebook cell will cause execution to pause until the cell scrolls into view for example. # 13th June 2018, 3:50 pm
Touring a Fast, Safe, and Complete(ish) Web Service in Rust. Brandur’s notes from building a high performance web service in Rust, using PostgreSQL via the Diesel ORM and the Rust actix-web framework which peovides Erlang-style actors and promise-based async concurrency. # 28th March 2018, 3:47 pm
Trio Tutorial. Trio is a really nice async library for Python—a simpler alternative to asyncio, with some very clean API design. Best of all, the tutorial is fantastic—it provides a very clear explanation of async/await without diving into the intricacies of coroutines. # 17th March 2018, 3:55 pm
Python & Async Simplified. Andrew Godwin: “Python’s async framework is actually relatively simple when you treat it at face value, but a lot of tutorials and documentation discuss it in minute implementation detail, so I wanted to make a higher-level overview that deliberately ignores some of the small facts and focuses on the practicalities of writing projects that mix both kinds of code.” This is really useful: clearly explains the two separate worlds of Python (sync and async functions) and describes Andrew’s clever sync_to_async and async_to_sync decorators as well. # 20th February 2018, 12:30 am
asgiref: AsyncToSync and SyncToAsync (via) Andrew’s classes in asgiref that can turn a synchronous callable into an awaitable (that runs in a thread pool) or an awaitable callable into a synchronous callable, using Python 3 futures and asyncio. # 2nd February 2018, 7:06 pm
Channels 2.0. Andrew just shipped Channels 2.0—a major rewrite and redesign of the Channels project he started back in 2014. Channels brings async to Django, providing a logical, standardized way of supporting things like WebSockets and asynchronous execution on top of a Django application. Previously it required you to run a separate Twisted server and redis/RabbitMQ queue, but thanks to Python 3 async everything can now be deployed as a single process. And the new ASGI spec means its turtles all the way down! Everything from URL routing to view functions to middleware can be composed together using the same ASGI interface. # 2nd February 2018, 6:19 pm
Back in 2008 Natalie Downe and I deployed what today we would call a microservice: json-head, a tiny Google App Engine app that allowed you to make an HTTP head request against a URL and get back the HTTP headers as JSON. One of our initial use-scase for this was Natalie’s addSizes.js, an unobtrusive jQuery script that could annotate links to PDFs and other large files with their corresponding file size pulled from the
Content-Length header. Another potential use-case is detecting broken links, since the API can be used to spot 404 status codes (as in this example).
Sanic. “Sanic is a Flask-like Python 3.5+ web server that’s written to go fast [...] On top of being Flask-like, Sanic supports async request handlers. This means you can use the new shiny async/await syntax from Python 3.5, making your code non-blocking and speedy”. # 7th October 2017, 6:39 pm
uvloop: Blazing fast Python networking. “uvloop makes asyncio fast. In fact, it is at least 2x faster than nodejs, gevent, as well as any other Python asynchronous framework. The performance of uvloop-based asyncio is close to that of Go programs.” # 7th October 2017, 5:53 pm
Mongrel2 is “Self-Hosting”. Zed Shaw’s Mongrel2 is shaping up to be a really interesting project. “A web server simply written in C that loves all languages equally”, the two most interesting new ideas are the ability to handle HTTP, Flash Sockets and WebSockets all on the same port (thanks to an extension to the Mongrel HTTP parser that can identify all three protocols) and the ability to hook Mongrel2 up to the backend servers using either TCP/IP or ZeroMQ. I’m guessing this means Mongrel2 could hold an HTTP request open, fire off some messages and wait for various backends to send messages back to construct the response, making async processing just as easy as a regular blocking request/response cycle. # 17th June 2010, 8:11 pm
node-v0.1.30 (via) A very significant new release of Node.js: the Twisted/Dojo-style Promise abstraction has been removed entirely, causing backwards incompatible changes to a bunch of core APIs. This means the pseudo-blocking Promise.wait() method is gone too, making it even harder to accidentally block your event loop. Instead, user-level libraries are encouraged to add Promise-style abstractions. I’m pleased to see Node sticking to the low-level stuff. # 22nd February 2010, 7 pm
Socket Benchmark of Asynchronous Servers in Python. A comparison of eight different asynchronous networking frameworks in Python. Tornado comes out on top in most of the benchmarks, but the post is most interesting for the direct comparison of simple code examples for each of the frameworks. # 22nd December 2009, 10:34 pm
Perl: Love it, or hate it, but don’t ignore it. Phillip Smith calls me out for omitting Perl from my list of Node.js event loop alternatives (I only mentioned Twisted and EventMachine). No conspiracy here, I’m just not connected enough to the Perl community to know what the popular event loop libraries are. To Perl’s credit, Perlbal was the first piece of software I saw that showed me how a single threaded, event loop based system could massively outperform a threaded alternative. # 27th November 2009, 7:51 am
Twisted inlineCallbacks and deferredGenerator. inlineCallbacks are a brilliant (but seemingly under-promoted) feature of Twisted which use the ability to return a value from a yield statement to make asynchronous callbacks look much more like regular sequential programming. # 25th October 2009, 11:30 pm
Diesel. Yet Another Asynchronous Python Comet Library, of interest because this is the first one I’ve seen that uses Python’s generator coroutines, taking advantage of the return value of the yield statement to feed messages in to a generator function. Currently only works on Python 2.6 on Linux due to a dependency on 2.6’s epoll support. # 23rd September 2009, 5:15 pm
We experimented with different async DB approaches, but settled on synchronous at FriendFeed because generally if our DB queries were backlogging our requests, our backends couldn’t scale to the load anyway. Things that were slow enough were abstracted to separate backend services which we fetched asynchronously via the async HTTP module.