I've written a few Python Toolboxes (which are new at ArcGIS 10.1), but am yet to decide whether/when I should write them rather than Python Script Tools in a standard toolbox.
I thought the Online Help might enlighten me when it prefaces some dot points with:
Once created, tools in a Python toolbox provide many advantages
However, the five advantages listed all seem to be over not being able to use Python to write tools, and none seem to specify an advantage of Python Toolboxes over Python Script Tools.
The two advantages that I can think of are:
- I can now write a "pure" Python tool in a single Python script without having to hook it up to a separately authored dialog with its Tool Validation looking like it was tacked on but I'm happy to be pragmatic rather than pure in this regard
- I could now use code (Python or any language capable of writing text files) to automate the writing of Python toolboxes but I am yet to come across a requirement to do this
Am I overlooking the compelling case that led Esri to provide the Python Toolbox capability and, if so, what is it?