Python Pocket Reference
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Python in Your Pocket --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Mark Lutz is an independent Python trainer, writer, and software developer, and is one of the primary figures in the Python community. He is the author of the O'Reilly books Programming Python and Python Pocket Reference (both in 2nd Editions), and co-author of Learning Python (both in 2nd Editions). Mark has been involved with Python since 1992, began teaching Python classes in 1997, and has instructed over 90 Python training sessions as of early 2003. In addition, he holds BS and MS degrees in computer science from the University of Wisconsin, and over the last two decades has worked on compilers, programming tools, scripting applications, and assorted client/server systems. Whenever Mark gets a break from spreading the Python word, he leads an ordinary, average life with his kids in Colorado. Mark can be reached by email at , or on the web at http://www.rmi.net/~lutz.
Top customer reviews
This book is not like that.
I found this book to be useless at giving me the core pieces of information I needed to write Python code. Perhaps you need to be at an advanced level with Python before this book becomes useful, but as someone who has a little Python experience, plus 20+ years of development experience in general, I ended up turning to my search engine to fill in the gaps that I had hoped this book would fill.
I found it very difficult to find the things in the index, and when I eventually found the information it was in a format that was difficult to comprehend. It felt much more like a dry and technical language spec than a reference book.
The O'Reilly "Python in a Nutshell" book is much more useful as both a reference and as a learning text.
Yes, there's an overview of the various language constructs but the book suffers from the fact that the table of contents is poor and the index is non-existent. The end result is a book which is nearly impossible to use. Whether the lack of an index is the fault of the publisher or the author is something of a moot point, but it's undeniable that these omissions ruin the book's usefulness.
If you want a Python reference you can carry around with you, this is the one to go for. Otherwise, splash the cash on Mark Beazley's `Python Essential Reference' instead - it costs a lot more, but is far more useable.
However, once you've created a few bookmarks and familiarised yourself with the book, it's indispensable. It's small enough to always stay on your desktop instead of being left on the shelf. And if you're bored, you can always flip through the book and learn something you didn't already know ;-)
I suppose it isn't what I needed.
Here's my scenario - I am using the excellent book -Python Programming for the Absolute Beginner - to teach myself Python. I have some programming experience in other languages but will be teaching Python at this level to a class of 15 year-olds next term. Now the book is great but it is tutorial in style, so it not quick and easy to look up things ... say all the methods associated with lists, or whatever ....
I can and do, of course, use the Python web site which is fine when I am on line.
What I wanted was a little book where I could quickly look up some basic Python stuff, with a couple of examples. Anyone got any ideas?
Now the pocket reference book is obviously for more advanced Python programmers who already know a lot but want a quick reference - hence the, no doubt, well deserved 4 or 5 stars.
90% of the time I work in python solely with PPR, and the remaining 10% of time I consult David Beazley's excellent 4th edition of Python Essential Reference (Developer's Library) for getting the "dirty details" in python and in the numerous available libraries there described. Thus, PPR is more than a mere pocket guide: its 200 pages indeed correspond to a valuable python single reference for seasoned programmers coming from all backgrounds.
All in all, PPR is truly a swiss knife for every Pythonista.
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