Python Essential Referenceby David M. Beazley, Guido Van Rossum
Designed for the practicing programmer, the book is concise, to the point, and highly accessible. It also/i>
Python Essential Reference is the definitive reference guide to the Python programming language – the one authoritative handbook that reliably untangles and explains both the core Python language and the most essential parts of the Python library.
Designed for the practicing programmer, the book is concise, to the point, and highly accessible. It also includes detailed information on the Python library and many advanced subjects that is not available in either the official Python documentation or any other single reference source.
Thoroughly updated to reflect the significant new programming language features and library modules that have been introduced in Python 2.6 and Python 3, the fourth edition of Python Essential Reference is the definitive guide for programmers who need to modernize existing Python code or who are planning an eventual migration to Python 3. Programmers starting a new Python project will find detailed coverage of contemporary Python programming idioms.
This fourth edition of Python Essential Reference features numerous improvements, additions, and updates:
- Coverage of new language features, libraries, and modules introduced into Python since the previous edition
- Practical coverage of Python's more advanced features including generators, coroutines, closures, metaclasses, and decorators
- Expanded coverage of library modules related to concurrent programming including threads, subprocesses, and the new multiprocessing module
- Up-to-the-minute coverage of how to use Python 2.6’s forward compatibility mode to evaluate code for Python 3 compatibility
- Improvedorganization for even faster answers and better usability
- Updates to reflect modern Python programming style and idioms
- Updated and improved example code
- Deep coverage of low-level system and networking library modules – including the options not covered in the standard documentation
Meet the Author
David M. Beazley is the developer of SWIG, a popular software package for intergrating C programs with interpreted languages, including Python, Perl, and Tcl. Beazley has been actively involved with the Python community since 1996 and is currently working on scripting language extension-building tools. He spent seven years working in the Theoretical Physics Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory, where he helped pioneer the use of Python with simulation software running on parallel computers. He is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Chicago, where he enjoys tormenting students with insane programming projects in operating systems, networks, and compliers.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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The author did a great job of including a ton of information in a clear and succinct reference. This is not a book that will teach a newbie all about programming. However, it is perfect for those that have at least some programming experience, whether in Python or some other language, and need a reference while coding in Python.
For those new to the language who find themselves wondering 'How do I do that in Python?', the first chapter includes a short (11 page) tutorial that demonstrates using:
- File I/O
- Lists & Tuples
The tutorial section is nice while getting up to speed with Python's syntax.
The rest of the book goes into a bit more detail on rest of the Python's language features with the exception of some of the more inconspicuous ones. Most of the 'raw' information in the book is available on python.org or other online resources, but with the book you get that same information filtered through the author's Python experience plus a lot of concise examples. I've found that what is not covered in this book is better answered by searching the related mailing list archives.
As with the other New Riders programming books I own, this one is indexed well, making it easy to find what I am looking for. Also, the size of the book is small enough that it fits nicely in my briefcase and on my desktop.
It appears that a lot of thought went into both the content of the book as well as the overall design of the reference, that's why I've given it the highest rating.