Getting started with python:
What is Python:
Python is a general purpose programming language created by Guido Van Rossum. Python is most praised for its elegant syntax and readable code, if you are just beginning your programming career python suits you best. With python you can do everything from GUI development, Web application, System administration tasks, Financial calculation, Data Analysis, Visualization and list goes on.
Python is interpreted language
Yes, python is interpreted language, when you run python program an interpreter will parse python program line by line basis, as compared to compiled languages like C or C++, where compiler first compiles the program and then start running.
Now you may ask, so what’s the difference ??
Difference is that interpreted languages are little bit slow as compared to compiled languages. Yes, you will definitely get some performance benefits if you write your code in compiled languages like C or C++.
But writing codes in such languages is a daunting task for beginner. Also in such languages you need to write even most basic functions like calculate the length of the array, split the string etc. For more advanced tasks sometimes you need to create your own data structures to encapsulate data in the program. So in C/C++ before you actually start solving your business problem you need to take care of all minor details. This is where python comes, in python you don’t need to define any data structure, no need to define small utility functions because python has everything to get you started.
Moreover python has hundreds of libraries available at https://pypi.python.org/ which you can use in your project without reinventing the wheel.
Python is Dynamically Typed
In python you don’t need to define variable data type ahead of time, python automatically guesses the data type of the variable based on the type of value it contains.
myvar = "Hello Python"
In the above line "Hello Python" is assigned to myvar , so the type of myvar is string.
Note that in python you do not need to end a statement with a semicolon ( ; ) .
Suppose little bit later in the program we assign myvar a value of 1 i.e
myvar = 1
now myvar is of type int .
Python is strongly typed
1 + "2"
will be '12'
here 1 will be converted to string and concatenated to "2" , which results in '12'
, which is a string. In Python automatic conversions are not allowed, so
1 + "2"
will produce an error.
Write less code and do more
Python codes are usually 1/3 or 1/5 of the java code. It means we can write less code in Python to achieve the same thing as in Java.
In python to read a file you only need 2 lines:
with open("myfile.txt") as f:
Who uses python:
Python is used by many large organization like Google, NASA, Quora, HortonWorks and many others.
Okay what i can start building in python ?
Pretty much anything you want. For e.g
- GUI application.
- Create Websites.
- Scrape data from website.
- Analyse Data.
- System Administration Task.
- Game Development.
and many more …
In the next post we will learn how to Install python.