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Learning Python Paperback – Jul 6 2013
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Powerful Object-Oriented Programming
About the Author
Mark Lutz is a leading Python trainer, the author of Python’s earliest and best-selling texts, and a pioneering figure in the Python world.
Mark is the author of the three O’Reilly books: Learning Python, Programming Python, and Python Pocket Reference, all currently in fourth or fifth editions. He has been using and promoting Python since 1992, started writing Python books in 1995, and began teaching Python classes in 1997. As of Spring 2013, Mark has instructed 260 Python training sessions, taught roughly 4,000 students in live classes, and written Python books that have sold 400,000 units and been translated to at least a dozen languages.
Together, his two decades of Python efforts have helped to establish it as one of the most widely used programming languages in the world today. In addition, Mark has been in the software field for 30 years. He holds BS and MS degrees in computer science from the University of Wisconsin where he explored implementations of the Prolog language, and over his career has worked as a professional software developer on compilers, programming tools, scripting applications, and assorted client/server systems.
Mark maintains a training website (http://learning-python.com) and an additional book support site on the Web (http://www.rmi.net/~lutz).
From the Publisher
Who Uses Python Today?
At this writing, the best estimate anyone can seem to make of the size of the Python user base is that there are roughly 1 million Python users around the world today (plus or minus a few). This estimate is based on various statistics, like download rates, web statistics, and developer surveys. Because Python is open source, a more exact count is difficult—there are no license registrations to tally. Moreover, Python is automatically included with Linux distributions, Macintosh computers, and a wide range of products and hardware, further clouding the user base picture
- Raspberry Pi
- Industrial Light & Magic, Pixar
- EVE Online
- Thousands more...
Why Do People Use Python?
Because there are many programming languages available today, this is the usual first question of newcomers. Given that there are roughly 1 million Python users out there at the moment, there really is no way to answer this question with complete accuracy; the choice of development tools is sometimes based on unique constraints or personal preference.
But after teaching Python to roughly 260 groups and over 4,000 students during the last 16 years, I have seen some common themes emerge. The primary factors cited by Python users seem to be these:
- Software quality
- Developer productivity
- Program portability
- Support libraries
- Component integration
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Top Customer Reviews
That being said, it is very well written. Each section introduces new concepts and then tests them with exercises. The author's writing style is very easy to understand and it's almost like listening to a professor in a class environment.
If you don't know Python and want to learn it properly, I really recommend this book. By the end of it you will feel like you have a good grasp of the language and its intricacies. If you take it slow and read it in its entirety (it is not the type of book you can skim), then it really is like taking a full semester course, except much, much cheaper!!
The only problems is that this is the fifth edition and it's 1,600 pages. It could use a major edit.
It's only shortcomings are
1- It's awfully repetitive in some places and most of chapter 4I should be scrapped and carbage-collected. The reason is that it introduce the objects type we find in python, but kept telling you "we won't go here in depth, as we will cover it later on" Later on being chapter 5-7-8-9. So, it's not like it is introducing something we need to comprehend the following chapters, as the following chapters are an in-depth look at the various objects types we find in python. As such, what's the point of chapter 4? Just get rid of it and start with chapter 5.
2- The author is teaching us about python in a somewhat dry approach. Meaning we are learning the language, piece by piece, instead of learning through coding(If you ever read any "Head First" book, you know what I mean by learning through coding) I'd have prefered a more practical approach in the first chapters, as it's pretty boring to simply read about objects type for 300 pages. At least, as I noted above, the author writing is good, so it's not as boring as it could be :P
So, good introduction to python. Not sure if I'll buy the follow up book "Programming python" though. I might go with the Cookbook instead.
Most recent customer reviews
Mark knows the topic and explains it well. This is a good book for learning Python. But if you're looking for a reference manual, look at his pocket reference instead.Published 20 days ago by Security Guy
Excellent source for learning Python. Detailed examples and great reading material. Very happy with my purchase.Published 1 month ago by Juan Manuel Roca Alvarez
excellent book...totally worth it whether you are new or intermediate. Nicely written and clear examples.Published 11 months ago by mausam duggal
This is a comprehensive introduction to Python. In fact this is probably the most comprehensive book on python 2.x and 3.x. Read morePublished 14 months ago by elginblatherford
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