Want to improve your Python fluency? There’s no better way than doing exercises, practicing your Python skills and ensuring you understand how to solve problems in the best possible way.
My book, “Python Workout,” not only contains 50 of my favorite exercises from my Python training business (at some of the world’s best-known companies), but is on sale today as Manning’s “Deal of the Day,” together with two other Python related books.
Don’t miss this opportunity to improve your Python skills at a discount! Go to https://www.manning.com/dotd to take advantage of the sale price.
The biggest problem with software today isn’t writing code. It’s maintaining — debugging, improving, and expanding — existing code. It’s hard to maintain someone else’s code. Heck, it’s even hard to maintain your own code. (Who among us hasn’t looked at code and said, “Who was the idiot who wrote this… oh, it was me…”?)
There’s no magic formula that’ll make code maintenance easy. But you can make it easier if (1) everyone agrees on some conventions for how the code will look and act, and (2) if you can reuse existing code, and thus write less of it.
That’s the promise of object-oriented programming: By reusing existing code, you can write less. Moreover, by agreeing to some general conventions, the code that you do write becomes easier to write and easier to read — and thus, easier to maintain.
Sounds great, right? It is, but (of course) there’s a catch: Object-oriented programming has a whole bunch of vocabulary, conventions, and expectations that tend to overwhelm many experienced developers with a background in objects.
And even if you have experience with objects, then Python’s way of doing things might strike you as as bit odd.
In either case, I have a solution for you: Weekly Python Exercise.
If you feel stuck with Python objects, then Weekly Python Exercise A3 (objects for beginners) is for you. We’ll cover such topics as objects, classes, instances, methods, attributes, and inheritance — not with dry lectures, but by actually solving new problems each week. Here’s how it works:
After fifteen weeks of working with objects, you’ll know how to write them, but will also understand the ideas behind them. You won’t be stuck any more, checking Stack Overflow a dozen times each day to double-check the syntax for working with objects in Python. Moreover, you’ll see the Pythonic way of doing things, helping you to write code in a way that Python developers aim to achieve.
Hundreds of developers from around the world have already enjoyed Weekly Python Exercise since it started several years ago. WPE A3 (objects for beginners) starts on September 17th, but early-bird pricing for that cohort ends tomorrow, Tuesday, September 3rd.
I’m delighted to announce that Weekly Python Exercise is a gold sponsor of PyCon 2020, to be held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. PyCon is the largest Python conference in the world, and is both fun and interesting for Python developers of all experience levels and backgrounds.
This will be the second year in a row sponsoring PyCon, and my third year attending the conference. Sponsoring means that I’ll not only be there, but that I’ll have a booth — giving away T-shirts and advertising the courses I teach at companies around the world, my online course offerings, and (of course) Weekly Python Exercise.
So if you’re a Python developer, you should attend PyCon. I promise that it’s worth attending.
And if you’re a developer who wants to become more fluent in Python, then check out Weekly Python Exercise. A new beginner-level cohort, focusing on objects, will start on September 17th. And a new advanced-level one, on a grab-bag of topics, will start in late October. Questions or comments? Just e-mail me, at email@example.com.
See you in Pittsburgh!
If you’ve been programming in Python for any length of time, then you’ve undoubtedly heard that “everything is an object.”
But what does that mean? And who cares? And what effect does that have on you as a developer — or on Python, as a language?
Indeed, how can (and should) you take advantage of Python’s object-oriented facilities to make your code more readable, maintainable, standard, and (dare I say it) Pythonic?
If you’re relatively new to Python, and have been struggling with some of these same questions, or if you’re just wondering about the differences between instances, classes, methods, and attributes, then I have good news for you: The upcoming cohort of Weekly Python Exercise is all about object-oriented programming.
In this 15-week course, you’ll learn in the best way I know, by solving problems and discussing them with others. As you work through the exercises, you’ll get a better understanding of:
Weekly Python Exercise, of course, is a family of 15-week classes designed to help improve your Python fluency. Each course works the same:
WPE A-level courses are for beginners, while B-level courses are for more advanced Python developers. But you can take any or all of them, in any order — and there’s no overlap between the exercises in these classes and any of the previous books/courses I’ve given.
This new cohort (A3) will be starting on Tuesday, September 17th. To join, you must sign up before September 10th. But if you sign up by September 3rd, you’ll get the early-bird discount, bringing the price down to $80 — more than $20 off the full price.
I won’t be offering these exercises for at least one more year. So if you want to sharpen your OO skills before the autumn of 2020, then you should act now.
As always, you can get an even better price if you’re a student, pensioner/retiree/senior citizen, or living permanently outside of the world’s 30 richest countries. Just reply to this e-mail, and I”ll send you the appropriate coupon code.
And if several people (at least five) from your company want to join together? Let me know, and I’ll give you an additional discount, too.
There’s lots more to say about Weekly Python Exercise, now in its third year of helping Python developers from around the world to write better code — doing more in less time, and getting better jobs than before. You can read more, and try to some sample exercises, at https://WeeklyPythonExercise.com/ .
But if you’ve always wanted to improve your fluency with Python objects, then you can just sign up at https://WeeklyPythonExercise.com/ .
Don’t wait, though! The early-bird discount ends on September 3rd.
About a month ago, I started my “Python standard library video explainer series” on YouTube. My goal is to walk through the Python standard library, one little bit at a time — explaining it to Python developers, and also discovering (for myself) the many gems that exist in there, but which I’ve never had a chance to discover or work with.
The series now has more than 25 videos, with more than 2.5 hours of content. I’m currently still on the “builtins” area of the standard library, but will soon be making my way into non-builtin modules. I have already learned a lot in preparing this series, and expect to learn much more as I march through the standard library, one little bit at a time.
As is always the case when I teach, I use the Jupyter notebook and live-code as I explain things. One viewer/subscriber suggested that I should share these Jupyter notebooks with the public.
And so, as of earlier today, you can get copies of the Jupyter notebooks I used in making my videos from GitHub: https://github.com/reuven/video-explainer-notebooks . I hope that the combination of Jupyter + videos will help people to understand Python better.
Subscribe to my YouTube channel, and you’ll get updates whenever I add to my explainer series!
I’ve attended two Python conferences so far this year: PyCon (in May, in Cleveland, Ohio) and EuroPython (in July, in Basel, Switzerland). Both were fantastic; I was happy to be a sponsor at PyCon in the US, and to give my “practical decorators” talk at both conferences.
While in Basel, I heard about PyCon Africa, a conference for people from all over Africa to come and share their Python knowledge with one another. And while I couldn’t make it (since I’m giving my “Python for non-programmers” course to a company in the US), I was delighted to become a bronze sponsor of the conference, under the Weekly Python Exercise name.
I hope that this year’s PyCon Africa, which starts today, is so over-the-top successful that it’ll happen again next year — and that I’ll be able to join it in person.
Meanwhile, don’t forget that if you want to improve your Python fluency, then Weekly Python Exercise offers a family of 15-week courses, at both beginner and advanced levels, to help you out. And if you live outside of the world’s 30 richest countries, then you’re entitled to a very steep discount on the enrollment fee. A new beginner-level cohort starts in September; find out more at https://WeeklyPythonExercise.com/ !
Today (Sunday, July 14th) is my birthday. And as happens every year, I’m celebrating with huge discounts on all of my online courses and books. I’m now 49, so you can get 49% off of anything in my online store. But as with birthdays, this massive sale won’t last long — it ends Monday evening.
Just use the coupon code BD2019 at my online store (https://store.lerner.co.il/), for 49% off of the following:
This is the biggest discount I’ve ever given on these courses… so enjoy the discount, celebrate my birthday with me, and improve your understanding of Python, data science, and Git while you can.
Questions? Just e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’ve been using Python for at least six months, but still find yourself searching on Stack Overflow and Google for answers to your problems — you’re not alone.
The good news is that the solution to your problem, to greater Python fluency, is easy: Practice, practice, and more practice.
My new advanced-level cohort of Weekly Python Exercise starts on Tuesday (July 2nd). Today is the deadline to sign up! Just go to https://WeeklyPythonExercise.com/ to learn more and start improving your Python skills.
A month or two ago, I saw an online quiz that caught my eye: How much of the Python standard library do you know?
Now, the “standard library” is the collection of modules and packages that come with Python. It constitutes the “batteries” that “batteries included” refers to in the Python world. And the standard library is big, with about 300 modules, each of which contains functions, classes, and values. Knowing the standard library, and how to use it, is essential to productive use of Python.
And yet, a large number of the people responding indicated that they knew very little of the standard library. Which makes sense, given that each of us tends to focus on what’s important to our jobs.
Indeed, I’ve been using Python for a long time. And I had to admit that there are large parts of the standard library with which I’m totally unfamiliar. I’m sure that there are gems (no Ruby pun intended) in there that I could make use of in my work, if I only knew about them.
I’ve thus decided to try an experiment, namely to walk through the entire standard library (or as much as I can physically, humanly do) in an open-ended YouTube video series. I’ve already uploaded a number of the videos, and I will be uploading a few new ones every week. I’m starting with the builtin types, walking through each of their methods — but I’ll then proceed to the other and lesser-known modules.
This is all new content, certainly overlapping my previous writing and courses to some degree, but made new for this series. It’s less formal than my courses, without any exercises or background theory connecting it all together. And yet, I’ve already learned about a number of methods and techniques — and I assume that the same will be true for you.
This video explainer is on YouTube, so you can watch it easily by subscribing to my channel there, at https://www.youtube.com/reuvenlerner. This is a long-term project, but one that I hope will be helpful and of use to you and to the entire Python community! Subscribe to my channel, and you’ll get updated whenever I add new videos.
Let’s face it: Stack Overflow has made developers’ lives easier. Almost every time I have a question, I find that someone on Stack Overflow has asked it, and that people have answered it, often in great detail.
I’m thus not against Stack Overflow, not by a long shot. But I have found that many Python developers visit there 10 or even 20 times a day, to find answers (and even code) that they can use to solve their problems.
Can you work this way? Yes, and many people do — but it’s not the ideal, which would be to have greater Python fluency. If you could know how to solve the problem without looking it up, you would be able to accomplish more in less time.
Moreover, achieving Python fluency means that when you do need to search, you’ll do it better, more quickly, and more accurately than before. You’ll be able to design larger and more complex systems, using your greater understanding of Python’s functionality and data structures to construct more sophisticated systems.
How can you achieve such fluency? Practice, practice, and more practice.
Weekly Python Exercise is a family of 15-week courses, each of which gives you that practice, along with community discussion and live office hours. As you work your way through WPE’s exercises, you’ll get a better and deeper understanding of how to write Pythonic code, how to use the standard library, and what packages on PyPI are worthwhile.
Here’s what one student has to say:
From my perspective, WPE has given me a broad sense of what the Python language is all about. WPE has not just taught me syntax but has given context with respect to what types of tasks the language is meant to solve… Reuven’s explanations per task really do bring each task full circle for understanding and approach.
A new advanced-level cohort, aimed at people with at least six months of Python experience,starts on July 2nd. You can sign up at any time until then — but avoid the last-minute penalty by joining before Friday, June 28th. During this cohort, we’ll explore such topics as iterators, generators, decorators, functional programming, and threads. Every question comes with a test written in “pytest”. And you’ll be able to exchange code, ideas, and suggestions with others in your cohort via our private, exclusive forum.
If you want to solve bigger and better problems with Python, if you want to take your Python to the next level, and if you want to push yourself to learn new topics, then you should join WPE.
Learn more about Weekly Python Exercise, and how it’ll help you to become a better Python programmer — doing more in less time, and doing it better. You can learn more at https://WeeklyPythonExercise.com.