How to Program in Python

by eHow Computers Editor

Guido van Rossen created the Python programming language. This object-oriented language is open source and platform independent. Programmers can write an application that works in Windows, Linux/Unix, Mac OS X, PDAs and mobile phones. Although Python resembles Java, Perl and Ruby, its huge standard library is its greatest strength. Python programmers have an extensive database of modules to use in their programs.

Download and install Python. Press "Start," "Programs," and "Python." A menu loads with at least four items: IDLE, Python (Command Line), Python Manuals and Uninstall Python. Later versions of Python have more menu options.

Review the "Library Reference" in the Python Manuals section. Reference manuals like "Beginning Python: From Novice to Professional" are valuable resources for beginning programmers. (See Resources below.)

Click "IDLE" and open a GUI (Graphic User Interface) "Python Shell." Programmers use this option for interactive programming. Clicking "X" closes the interface. Selecting the "Command Line" provides an alternative programming option. Both interfaces provide the ">>>" Python prompt.

Choose a programming interface. At the prompt, type "Hello World" and press the "Enter" key. The screen displays "Hello World." This is your program's output. This is Python programming at its best. Writing the same program in Java requires several lines. Python programs are smaller than other languages.