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JamieC
January 25th, 2007, 12:10 AM
I'm considering learning Python, but first I'd like to know a few things...

1. How widespread is the use of Python in business? Do lots of companies use it to develop applications? Would it be worth learning Python as opposed to C/C++?
2. How difficult is Python? I'm not completely new to programming. I have around three years of experience with PHP (granted it is web based but technique and programming fundamentals still apply). I have about 6 months of JavaScript/AJAX experience and I'm pretty good with Pascal (which is useless, I know).
3. Can anyone recommend any books that would be suitable, taking into consideration my programming knowledge (please, not e-books)?

Thanks in advance, Jamie.

Tomosaur
January 25th, 2007, 12:17 AM
1) It's not an 'industry standard', although there are a number of commercial apps written in Python. I don't know any off the top of my head though.
2) Python is considered to be very easy to get your teeth into. It is whitespace-dependent, which forces you to write clean, well-structured code. It has a simple syntax, and documentation is pretty good.
3) Dive into Python is a great book, and is freely available: http://diveintopython.org/

maxamillion
January 25th, 2007, 12:33 AM
NASA and google both code in python ... that's good enough for me :) but I will have to agree that no its not an industry standard.

... the other two were covered, well ... actually all 3 were, just wanted to comment. :P

qamelian
January 25th, 2007, 12:34 AM
3) Dive into Python is a great book, and is freely available: http://diveintopython.org/

It's also included in the Ubuntu repositories.

JamieC
January 25th, 2007, 12:45 AM
It's also included in the Ubuntu repositories.

Thanks for that, I managed to find it using:


sudo aptitude search python | grep book


Thanks everyone. One more thing, is C/C++ more extensive than Python? Can it achieve better results?

maxamillion
January 25th, 2007, 12:48 AM
Thanks everyone. One more thing, is C/C++ more extensive than Python? Can it achieve better results?

C/C++ is far more "in depth" than python..... and please define "better"?

Tomosaur
January 25th, 2007, 12:50 AM
C/C++ are more powerful than Python yes. They allow you to play around at a lower level. However, it really just depends what you want to do. You wouldn't write an OS in Python (indeed, you couldn't anyway :P )

JamieC
January 25th, 2007, 12:50 AM
C/C++ is far more "in depth" than python..... and please define "better"?

I was waiting for somebody to ask that, I mean in terms of efficiency, I guess?

Mirrorball
January 25th, 2007, 12:59 AM
C/C++ can be way faster, but it depends on what you are doing.

Tomosaur
January 25th, 2007, 12:59 AM
Python is interpreted, which is generally regarded as slower than compiled languages (which C/C++ are). It depends on the program, and the skill of the programmer though. Given today's processors, you are unlikely to notice a difference between Python and C/C++ or other languages, until you hit the intensive programs, in which case you probably wouldn't be using Python anyway.

LKRaider
January 25th, 2007, 01:43 AM
If you want to look at some Python products that are very much used by the industry, especially in the CMS area, take a look at Zope (and Plone), Django and Turbogears.

And Python is very easy to learn, specially because of it's interactivity: you can test real application code on a Python shell at any time, making for fast development times. (say, developing a database driven app/website in a couple of hours !)

Indeed, if you want speed on development, Python is the way to go. OTOH, if you require runtime speed, C/C++ is much better suited.

pmasiar
January 25th, 2007, 03:24 AM
How widespread is the use of Python in business? Do lots of companies use it to develop applications? Would it be worth learning Python as opposed to C/C++?

Many startups or startup-like operated companies (who needs results, fast) like Google use Python. Golden Sachs or other ossificated Fortune-500 companies are more likely to use Java or C++ but why would you want to work there? They still may use Python in non-critical areas. Depends. Thre is many companies, many projects, you need to be flexible.

Python is not a way to sure employment (Java/C# is more popular)- it is way to learn how you as programmer can be productive (more than in Java/C#). With possible interesting jobs with smart people.

[/QUOTE] recommend any books that would be suitable, taking into consideration my programming knowledge (please, not e-books)?[/QUOTE]

Dive Into Python is also paper book. Learning Python is very good, as are most of O'Reilly books. And splurge for Pocket Reference for $10, too :-)

JamieC
January 25th, 2007, 04:56 PM
Thanks guys for the in-depth responses to my questions. Very much appreciated.

Instead of starting a new thread, does anybody have any reccomendations for C/C++ books?