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=?iso-8859-1?q?Robin_K=E5veland?= 10-10-2007 06:30 PM

Plugins / Modularity
 
Hi there. I'm basically in the process of writing my first substantial
application in Python, and I've made a couple of (I'd like to say)
design decisions so it won't just be a jumble. So, I've divided my
program into three sub-packages, core, plugins and utilities.

The core will be needed for the program to be run, but I've put it in
a package by itself to make things more tidy.
The utilities will be things that are handy to have (I'm thinking
packages written by others that will make my work easier), but aren't
necessary for the program to run. I'm not sure if this is needed yet,
but I want to have the option in case it turns out to be useful.

The plugins will basically be a package with modules adding
functionality to the program, so to make it more extensible, and let
others have a very simple way of extending the functionality without
having to read a lot of source code and documentation. Adding a plugin
should be really simple, preferrably you shouldn't have to modify any
existing source, just put a .py file into the directory. This is where
I'm sort of stuck. Does anyone know a way I can achieve this?

This poses a couple of challenges for me, given the structure of my
project and that I have no clue about how to do it. I'm thinking here
that every plugin will have a main callable, which will recieve a
Request object which can be queried for information, and an Action
object which can be used to affect the state of the program to some
degree. These will ideally be very simple (And for the moment, they
obviously are).

What I want, is a moment to 'contact' every module in the plugins
package, and send these two objects to it's main callable. I also want
to add a way for the program to load and reload plugin modules on the
fly, so I can modify them without having to shut it down.

Does anyone have some links for me? Alternatively any ideas?

Thanks in advance.


danmcleran@yahoo.com 10-10-2007 06:38 PM

Re: Plugins / Modularity
 
On Oct 10, 12:30 pm, Robin Kåveland <kaavel...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi there. I'm basically in the process of writing my first substantial
> application in Python, and I've made a couple of (I'd like to say)
> design decisions so it won't just be a jumble. So, I've divided my
> program into three sub-packages, core, plugins and utilities.
>
> The core will be needed for the program to be run, but I've put it in
> a package by itself to make things more tidy.
> The utilities will be things that are handy to have (I'm thinking
> packages written by others that will make my work easier), but aren't
> necessary for the program to run. I'm not sure if this is needed yet,
> but I want to have the option in case it turns out to be useful.
>
> The plugins will basically be a package with modules adding
> functionality to the program, so to make it more extensible, and let
> others have a very simple way of extending the functionality without
> having to read a lot of source code and documentation. Adding a plugin
> should be really simple, preferrably you shouldn't have to modify any
> existing source, just put a .py file into the directory. This is where
> I'm sort of stuck. Does anyone know a way I can achieve this?
>
> This poses a couple of challenges for me, given the structure of my
> project and that I have no clue about how to do it. I'm thinking here
> that every plugin will have a main callable, which will recieve a
> Request object which can be queried for information, and an Action
> object which can be used to affect the state of the program to some
> degree. These will ideally be very simple (And for the moment, they
> obviously are).
>
> What I want, is a moment to 'contact' every module in the plugins
> package, and send these two objects to it's main callable. I also want
> to add a way for the program to load and reload plugin modules on the
> fly, so I can modify them without having to shut it down.
>
> Does anyone have some links for me? Alternatively any ideas?
>
> Thanks in advance.


I've just completed the initial launch basically this kind of software
framework. They way I did it was to parse xml files and load modules
and classes dynamically. After instantiating the classes, I call a
certain method that I expect to be present so that each class can
register any functionality it provides with a central registry within
the system. Overall, I've been very pleased with the way it turned
out. It's very easy to add functionality to the system, you simply add
an xml file along with some Python modules and you don't need to
change any existing code. I can provide some examples for you if you
like. Here's a little snippet from a Python script that loads modules
and classes:

def loadModule(moduleName):
"""
Loads modules from within nested packages
Reload ensures Python code is re-compiled.
"""
mod = __import__(moduleName)
components = moduleName.split('.')

for component in components[1:]:
mod = getattr(mod, component)
mod = reload(mod)

return mod

def loadClass(moduleName, className):
"""
Load a class from a module.
Note: This does not create a class instance, it only loads the
code.
"""
module = loadModule(moduleName = moduleName)
c = getattr(module, className)

return c

You can try this out by passing in a string with with module and/or
class path and see that the module and/or class. Note that loadClass
does not create a class instance, so you'll have to instantiate it if
you want to, like this:

o = loadClass(modulePath,className)() #instantiates class that was
loaded dynamically


=?iso-8859-1?q?Robin_K=E5veland?= 10-10-2007 06:43 PM

Re: Plugins / Modularity
 
On Oct 10, 8:38 pm, "danmcle...@yahoo.com" <danmcle...@yahoo.com>
wrote:
> On Oct 10, 12:30 pm, Robin Kåveland <kaavel...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>
>
> > Hi there. I'm basically in the process of writing my first substantial
> > application in Python, and I've made a couple of (I'd like to say)
> > design decisions so it won't just be a jumble. So, I've divided my
> > program into three sub-packages, core, plugins and utilities.

>
> > The core will be needed for the program to be run, but I've put it in
> > a package by itself to make things more tidy.
> > The utilities will be things that are handy to have (I'm thinking
> > packages written by others that will make my work easier), but aren't
> > necessary for the program to run. I'm not sure if this is needed yet,
> > but I want to have the option in case it turns out to be useful.

>
> > The plugins will basically be a package with modules adding
> > functionality to the program, so to make it more extensible, and let
> > others have a very simple way of extending the functionality without
> > having to read a lot of source code and documentation. Adding a plugin
> > should be really simple, preferrably you shouldn't have to modify any
> > existing source, just put a .py file into the directory. This is where
> > I'm sort of stuck. Does anyone know a way I can achieve this?

>
> > This poses a couple of challenges for me, given the structure of my
> > project and that I have no clue about how to do it. I'm thinking here
> > that every plugin will have a main callable, which will recieve a
> > Request object which can be queried for information, and an Action
> > object which can be used to affect the state of the program to some
> > degree. These will ideally be very simple (And for the moment, they
> > obviously are).

>
> > What I want, is a moment to 'contact' every module in the plugins
> > package, and send these two objects to it's main callable. I also want
> > to add a way for the program to load and reload plugin modules on the
> > fly, so I can modify them without having to shut it down.

>
> > Does anyone have some links for me? Alternatively any ideas?

>
> > Thanks in advance.

>
> I've just completed the initial launch basically this kind of software
> framework. They way I did it was to parse xml files and load modules
> and classes dynamically. After instantiating the classes, I call a
> certain method that I expect to be present so that each class can
> register any functionality it provides with a central registry within
> the system. Overall, I've been very pleased with the way it turned
> out. It's very easy to add functionality to the system, you simply add
> an xml file along with some Python modules and you don't need to
> change any existing code. I can provide some examples for you if you
> like. Here's a little snippet from a Python script that loads modules
> and classes:
>
> def loadModule(moduleName):
> """
> Loads modules from within nested packages
> Reload ensures Python code is re-compiled.
> """
> mod = __import__(moduleName)
> components = moduleName.split('.')
>
> for component in components[1:]:
> mod = getattr(mod, component)
> mod = reload(mod)
>
> return mod
>
> def loadClass(moduleName, className):
> """
> Load a class from a module.
> Note: This does not create a class instance, it only loads the
> code.
> """
> module = loadModule(moduleName = moduleName)
> c = getattr(module, className)
>
> return c
>
> You can try this out by passing in a string with with module and/or
> class path and see that the module and/or class. Note that loadClass
> does not create a class instance, so you'll have to instantiate it if
> you want to, like this:
>
> o = loadClass(modulePath,className)() #instantiates class that was
> loaded dynamically


Ah, fantastic! I didn't know about __import__, this is basically
exactly what I need. I think I will manage, thanks a lot!


danmcleran@yahoo.com 10-10-2007 07:25 PM

Re: Plugins / Modularity
 
On Oct 10, 12:43 pm, Robin Kåveland <kaavel...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Oct 10, 8:38 pm, "danmcle...@yahoo.com" <danmcle...@yahoo.com>
> wrote:
>
>
>
> > On Oct 10, 12:30 pm, Robin Kåveland <kaavel...@gmail.com> wrote:

>
> > > Hi there. I'm basically in the process of writing my first substantial
> > > application in Python, and I've made a couple of (I'd like to say)
> > > design decisions so it won't just be a jumble. So, I've divided my
> > > program into three sub-packages, core, plugins and utilities.

>
> > > The core will be needed for the program to be run, but I've put it in
> > > a package by itself to make things more tidy.
> > > The utilities will be things that are handy to have (I'm thinking
> > > packages written by others that will make my work easier), but aren't
> > > necessary for the program to run. I'm not sure if this is needed yet,
> > > but I want to have the option in case it turns out to be useful.

>
> > > The plugins will basically be a package with modules adding
> > > functionality to the program, so to make it more extensible, and let
> > > others have a very simple way of extending the functionality without
> > > having to read a lot of source code and documentation. Adding a plugin
> > > should be really simple, preferrably you shouldn't have to modify any
> > > existing source, just put a .py file into the directory. This is where
> > > I'm sort of stuck. Does anyone know a way I can achieve this?

>
> > > This poses a couple of challenges for me, given the structure of my
> > > project and that I have no clue about how to do it. I'm thinking here
> > > that every plugin will have a main callable, which will recieve a
> > > Request object which can be queried for information, and an Action
> > > object which can be used to affect the state of the program to some
> > > degree. These will ideally be very simple (And for the moment, they
> > > obviously are).

>
> > > What I want, is a moment to 'contact' every module in the plugins
> > > package, and send these two objects to it's main callable. I also want
> > > to add a way for the program to load and reload plugin modules on the
> > > fly, so I can modify them without having to shut it down.

>
> > > Does anyone have some links for me? Alternatively any ideas?

>
> > > Thanks in advance.

>
> > I've just completed the initial launch basically this kind of software
> > framework. They way I did it was to parse xml files and load modules
> > and classes dynamically. After instantiating the classes, I call a
> > certain method that I expect to be present so that each class can
> > register any functionality it provides with a central registry within
> > the system. Overall, I've been very pleased with the way it turned
> > out. It's very easy to add functionality to the system, you simply add
> > an xml file along with some Python modules and you don't need to
> > change any existing code. I can provide some examples for you if you
> > like. Here's a little snippet from a Python script that loads modules
> > and classes:

>
> > def loadModule(moduleName):
> > """
> > Loads modules from within nested packages
> > Reload ensures Python code is re-compiled.
> > """
> > mod = __import__(moduleName)
> > components = moduleName.split('.')

>
> > for component in components[1:]:
> > mod = getattr(mod, component)
> > mod = reload(mod)

>
> > return mod

>
> > def loadClass(moduleName, className):
> > """
> > Load a class from a module.
> > Note: This does not create a class instance, it only loads the
> > code.
> > """
> > module = loadModule(moduleName = moduleName)
> > c = getattr(module, className)

>
> > return c

>
> > You can try this out by passing in a string with with module and/or
> > class path and see that the module and/or class. Note that loadClass
> > does not create a class instance, so you'll have to instantiate it if
> > you want to, like this:

>
> > o = loadClass(modulePath,className)() #instantiates class that was
> > loaded dynamically

>
> Ah, fantastic! I didn't know about __import__, this is basically
> exactly what I need. I think I will manage, thanks a lot!


No problem, good luck.



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