Python Concepts/To Get You Started

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Objective[edit | edit source]

  • Learn about comments.
  • Review the shell and its prompt.
  • Learn what a variable is and what it does.
  • Review about Python 3.X and Python 2.X
  • Review about a Python script.
  • Learn some Python jargon.

Lesson[edit | edit source]

This quick lesson will help you understand the basics of Python, while helping to explain some jargon that you'll hear later on.

The Basics[edit | edit source]

  • First off, a comment is a number sign, #, (also called a hashtag in social media) followed by some text. A comment is a human readable sentence that Python will ignore. For example, # This is a comment! will not be interpreted by Python.
  • Second, if you ever see three greater than signs (>>>) and three periods (...), then this implies that the Python shell is being used. Refer back to the previous lesson on how to access the shell.
  • Thirdly, a variable is a namespace , like var and somevar, and it can hold a Python data type, like a number or string that you'll learn about later.
  • Fourth, like the previous lesson stated, Python 3.X will be used in this course, so make sure you don't use Python 2.X or you'll definitely get an error message.
  • Fifth, a python script is just a plain text file with python code in it. Refer back to the previous lesson for more information.

Python Jargon[edit | edit source]

  • CPython: The original Python implementation written in C.
  • IDE: Stands for Integrated Development Environment. An IDE named IDLE is bundled with a CPython installation.
  • Namespace: The name of a variable.
  • PEP: Stands for Python Enhancement Proposals. These documents rationally govern Python.
  • PSF: Stands for Python Software Foundation. This non-profit organization helps maintain and advance Python.
  • Pythonic: Something that follows the idioms of Python.
  • Shell: A simple GUI that can print output and capture input.
  • Unpythonic: Opposite of Pythonic. Something that doesn't follow or goes against the idioms of Python.
  • Zen of Python: Formally known as PEP 20. A document that closely expresses Python's principles and philosophies.

Assignments[edit | edit source]

  • Make sure you understand this lesson, as it will be assumed that you know this.
  • Make sure you can open up Python from a shell or prompt.
  • Double check to make sure that you have Python 3.X and if you don't, see Introduction and setup.
  • Make sure you know how to create and run a Python script.
  • Make sure you understand the Python vocabulary and jargon. If you're interested in learning more, see the Python Documentation Glossary.

Completion status: Ready for testing by learners and teachers. Please begin!