Book Excerpt: Python Essential Reference, 3rd Edition

ython is a stable general-purpose programming language used in nearly all application domains by companies such as Yahoo and Industrial Light and Magic. Python Essential Reference, 3rd Edition, is a comprehensive reference book to the Python programming language.

The focus of this latest edition is to add coverage of significant new features and new library modules added to the language over the past five years. Clearly written, with concise organization, the new features covered include new style classes, unification of types and classes, xmlrpclip, intertools, bz2 and optparse, making it the most up-to-date Python book on the market.

Author David Beazley is a developer of several software development tools including SWIG (a popular tool for integrating C/C++ programs with other programming languages including Python, Perl, Tcl, Ruby, PHP, Java) and PLY) a Python version of the lex/yacc parsing tools). Beazley has been programming Python since 1996 and helped pioneer the use of Python with scientific computing software while working at Los Alamos National Laboratory. From 1998-2005 he was assistant professor in the Department of computer Science at the University of Chicago where he enjoyed tormentingstudents with insane projects in operating systems, networks, and compilers. Currently he is a freelance software developer.

Chapter 12 covers the built-in functions and exceptions in the Python library, consolidating information that was scattered throughout the book in earlier editions, and providing an alphabetical reference for programmers to discover and look up library functions and exceptions.

Download the PDF of Chapter 12

Chapter 18 covers high-level file handling, including zip, tar, CVS, and text files. The chapter is arranged by file type, covers the object methods of file-related objects such as Directory, Zipfile, and compressor objects. Each section includes examples with code you can use as the basis for your own file manipulations.

Download the PDF of Chapter 18

Reproduced from “Python Essential Reference, 3rd Edition” by permission of Pearson Education. ISBN 0672328623, copyright 2006. All rights reserved.

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