[CentralOH] [DoJo] Useful information for beginners and quants

Damien Calloway damiencalloway at fastmail.com
Thu Sep 12 21:26:35 EDT 2019

Hello all !

Recently, a few new people have come to the dojo looking for information 
to get started in Python. There are a variety of resources that come up, 
and I supposed that I might share a few of them again, since it seems to 
be a perennial theme.

Automate the Boring Stuff with Python by Al Sweigart - 

The author has that website, which lets you read on line for free. Also, 
has a link to his Udemy course and book available on Amazon. For what 
most people come to the dojo for, this book is likely the best beginner 
resource, in that it breaks Python down into small pieces that actually 
solve real problems and do useful things. Much more useful, in my 
not-so-humble opinion, than Project Euler and the like.

Plus, I have met Al Sweigart, and he is a very cool guy, who has 
supported Cophy and PyOhio.

In terms of other useful sites, consider :

The Hitchhiker's Guide to Python - https://docs.python-guide.org

This site is good for "okay, what next ?" - has a good overview of the 
kinds of things a new Pythonista might consider looking into, in order. 
This site is also available in book form from O'Reilly.

Real Python - https://realpython.com/start-here/

This is Dan Bader's website - he has put together an interesting 
resource of Python from a practitioner's perspective. They share a lot 
of information for free, but they also have a few paid tutorials as 
well. And they have sponsored Humble Bundle for the next two weeks or so :


Humble Bundle, in general, is a good resource to look at to round out 
your collection of tech books. YMMV, but I did find this useful - 
especially when No Starch Press does their bundles.

By the way, for those of you who have an interest in security, this 
bundle is available for the next three days - 

Again, YMMV - it is not unusual for the Humble Bundles to also have just 
one or two good items, and a bunch of other stuff you may not need. But 
for getting started, it can be a good running start on building out a 
reference library of sorts.


A few quants came by within the past few weeks. Python has a number of 
useful things, and I also noted that quite a few FinTech sites have 
already switched away from Visual Basic and C++ and towards Python

https://pyquantnews.com - seems interesting

https://tpq.io - this author also has a O'Reilly book

http://greenteapress.com/thinkpython2/html/index.html - Think Python - a 
classical computer science oriented approach to Python, may be sympatico 
with the way a quant may have learned about data

https://www.numworks.com - This is a graphing calculator that can be 
programmed using Python. Depending on what your focus is - I will not 
judge you, though.

https://realpython.com/learning-paths/data-science-python-core-skills/ - 
looping back to Dan Bader - some free videos on Jupyter and Pandas

Jupyter - https://jupyter.org - interactive Python notebook that data 
people will love

Pandas - https://pandas.pydata.org - You quants need this

Anaconda - https://www.anaconda.com - many many quants working with 
Python with use this

PostGIS - https://postgis.net - PostGRES + GIS - Python is the de facto 
scripting language for this set up. Eventually, you will want this

data.world - https://data.world - esoteric source of user submitted 
data. Has a database of Big Foot sightings, and UFO sightings, etc.

Runstone Academy - 
- Another cool Python resource for data and quant oriented people

The presence of data itself is information

For FinTech

FinViz - https://finviz.com - useful grab bag of data for all the major 
markets - not just the US stock market

Quandl - https://www.quandl.com - another source of financial data

Both of these suggestions come from your fellow quant Pythonistas

Investopedia - https://www.investopedia.com - this site has been around 
since the early days of the internet - good for basic definitions and 
famous for their stock market simulator (which, sadly, appears to be 
gone now)

Source for those of you seeking Ohio Blue Sky - 
https://www.com.ohio.gov/secu/ - you will likely need other resources, 
though, as this is literally just the front door website for the agency 
that licenses securities dealers


COBOL is alive and well - IBM has open sourced their COBOL Analyzer - 

GnuCOBOL is a thing - https://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/gnucobol/

Write NOW ! https://handwritingsuccess.com/write-now/ - handwriting 
repair in the Italic (and Italic cursive) style

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