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Answer by Hernani , Qato lead developer and father of Tiago · Apr 06, 2010 at 01:51 PM
Not true at all, some people say that because they don't know/don't want to configure apache correctly.
The thing is that for example with php, all your code and media files (images and such) can all be mixed together, apache will just figure out what to do with each based on the request path.
With python/django, or more properly said with modwsgi/modpython (the apache modules which handle python powered websites), the story is different, you configure the apache virtual host and say "hey, all requests to this path are handled by this python application", which may include media files, and that's we're people start blaiming that django/python is not that good at serving them, and they are correct, because that's not what python is designed to do. So you can just add one more directive to apache and say "but hey, if the request starts with /somepath/, just serve whatever you find in this directory", and this way django will not even know that such request was done.
About code itself, just think about php again, if you have a bunch of checkups and database queries you have to do at application "boot time", with php you have to repeat that operation for each and every page request, but with python, once the application is booted, all that stuff is already in memory, which makes the all site much faster. This has a problem however, if you change your code, you have to reload your app (just reload, not restart as some may want you to believe). But if you're changing code that's because you're developing and if you're developing, you'll probably use the development server that reloads itself automatically each time a file changes. However, if you're on production, you'll probably only change the code once in a while, when there are new updates, and then you'll have to reload, which is a very small price to pay for performance.