Finally I seem to have pulled myself together and started following the instructions of the Python MOOC, which officially begins on 17 June, but has already started sending some tasks for preparation. And they actually turned out to be rather instructive for me. For instance, after about a month of toying with Codecademy, I had a very vague idea of how to work with IDLE. I mean, I tried it, but it didn’t make much sense and I didn’t get into details, because I was quite happy with Codecademy Labs at my disposal. And I also found out that IDLE stands for “Integrated DeveLopment Environment” (but still I suspect it has something to do with Eric Idle from Monty Python Flying Circle). Also, I know there are several versions of Python, but I still can’t understand what it really means. Well, hopefully, I’ll find out later. Right now I had to install Python 2.6 (instead of 3.0 I installed previously), according to the course requirements.
What has been a really bad experience so far is the way to calculate square root by way of raising a number to the 0.5-th power. This procedure just won’t fit into my mind. Not yet anyway.
Now, I’ll just post here some links in order to save them:
- MIT OCW Introduction to Python and IDLE (.pdf)
- A very simple and helpful instruction about how to start using IDLE
- Python Tutor: a mailing list for Python fans, as far as I understood
- Python for Beginners: a wiki-type resource
- And a wonderful lecture by John Guttag (the introductory part of MIT OCW programming course) Btw, the video currently doesn’t work properly at YouTube, so it might be a better way to simply download it or to watch in browser.