Learning Python

by byamabe on May 4, 2008

I’ve been away for quite a while, so first a quick update. I’ve been working on a Django web app which I hope I’ll be finished with soon. I also started a podcast over at Wittenberg Media that’s been taking up most of my free time.

Since I started working with Django I obviously started working with Python. Like the Ruby on Rails learning projects I did, I was learning the framework and using the language constructs as needed. However, I feel a better match with Python than with Ruby and since I’ve been wanting to break out of the Java corner I’ve put myself in, I decided I would learn Python as well as Django.

Over the years of studying computer languages, I’ve learned that I can’t really know a language unless I do some really projects with them. I started kicking around the idea that to claim that I knew a language, I would:

  1. Write a to do list or address book with a web interface without using a framework. This would force me to learn how to do database and socket programming with only standard libraries.
  2. Write a Tetris clone. This would force me to learn how the language works with graphics and the native application environment.

While I think those will be my benchmarks for my claim to knowing a language, I wanted to start a little smaller. So after reading some tutorials and online documentation I thought I should do some actual programming, but what to write? Well, I ran across the old site by PragDave called CodeKata which seems like a go place to start. Over the next few posts I’ll write about my experience working on Kata Two — Karate Chop.

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