[Chicago] Reading From a Directory

Sean Brant brant.sean at gmail.com
Tue May 10 01:38:18 CEST 2011

On May 9, 2011, at 6:32 PM, Clyde Forrester wrote:

> What I want to do is open a directory and read file names from it.
> The standard answer I get by Googling seems to be:
> No you don't. Are you mad? Why would you want to do that? Clearly you want to do something else. It's a scripting language and you have no business "programming" in it. Why don't you just pass the buck to a shell (os.popen) and handle it that way? Or use a magic module glob.glob) to get a complete list, or something.
> Perl and Ruby have directory classes with open, read, and close methods. Why doesn't Python?
> Now it does occur to me that any time I want to read from a directory, I want all the files. Even if I'm using a wild card, I want to apply it to all the files in the directory, not just the first one or two. But somehow calling out to a shell, or invoking a module seems as "easy" as hiring a subcontractor to tie my shoes. I don't things have to get that complicated.

If you just need to list the files in a directory do os.listdir [1]. If need Unix style shell matching use the glob module [2].

[1] http://docs.python.org/library/os.html#os.listdir
[2] http://docs.python.org/library/glob.html

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