Python in a Nutshell, 4/e

A Desktop Quick Reference

Author: Alex Martelli

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Python was recently ranked as today's most popular programming language on the TIOBE index, thanks to its broad applicability to design and prototyping to testing, deployment, and maintenance. With this updated fourth edition, you'll learn how to get the most out of Python, whether you're a professional programmer or someone who needs this language to solve problems in a particular field.

Carefully curated by recognized experts in Python, this new edition focuses on version 3.10, bringing this seminal work on the Python language fully up to date on five version releases, including preview coverage of upcoming 3.11 features.

This handy guide will help you:

  • Learn how Python represents data and program as objects
  • Understand the value and uses of type annotations
  • Examine which language features appeared in which recent versions
  • Discover how to use modern Python idiomatically
  • Learn ways to structure Python projects appropriately
  • Understand how to debug Python code

About the Author

Alex Martelli has been programming for 40 years, mainly in Python for the recent half of that time. He wrote the first two editions of Python in a Nutshell, and co-authored the first two editions of the Python Cookbook and the third edition of Python in a Nutshell. He is a PSF Fellow and Core Committer, and won the 2002 Activators' Choice Award and the 2006 Frank Willison Memorial Award for contributions to the Python community. He is active on Stack Overflow and a frequent speaker at technical conferences. He's been living in Silicon Valley with his wife Anna for over 16 years, and working at Google throughout this time, currently as Senior Staff Engineer leading "long tail" tech support for Google Cloud.

Anna Martelli Ravenscroft is a PSF Fellow and winner of the 2013 Frank Willison Memorial Award for contributions to the Python community. She co-authored the second edition of the Python Cookbook and 3rd edition of Python in a Nutshell. She has been a technical reviewer for many Python books and is a regular speaker and track chair at technical conferences. Anna lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Alex, two dogs, one cat, and several chickens.

Passionate about programming and community, Steve Holden has worked with computers since 1967 and started using Python at version 1.4 in 1995. He has since written about Python, created instructor-led training, delivered it to an international audience built 40 hours of video training for "reluctant Python users." An Emeritus Fellow of the Python Software Foundation, Steve served as a director of the Foundation for eight years and as its chairman for three; he created PyCon, the Python community's international conference series and was presented with the Simon Willison Award for services to the Python community. He lives in Hastings, England and works as Technical Architect for the UK Department for International Trade, where he is responsible for the systems that maintain and regulate the trading environment.

Paul McGuire has been programming for 40+ years, in languages ranging from FORTRAN to Pascal, PL/I, COBOL, Smalltalk, Java, C/C++/C#, and Tcl, settling on Python as his language-of-choice in 2001. He is a PSF Fellow, and is the author and maintainer of the popular pyparsing module, as well as littletable and plusminus. Paul authored the O'Reilly Short Cut Getting Started with Pyparsing, and has written and edited articles for Python Magazine. He has also spoken at PyCon and at the Austin Python User's Group, and is active on StackOverflow. Paul now lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and dog, and works for Indeed as a Senior Site Reliability Engineer, helping people get jobs!

Alex Martelli
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