How to disable assert statements inside a module?

Peter Hansen peter at
Mon Mar 11 01:50:30 CET 2002

Pearu Peterson wrote:
> Is there a way to disable all assert statements inside a module,
> and without calling python with -O switch?
> Why? I have developed a module using lots of assert statements (yes,
> they are all relevant). Now when it is finished, I found that
> running python with -O switch the speed up is approximately 4 times. I
> assume that this is due to disabled assert statements. I don't want to
> remove all these assert statements because I might extend this module in
> future when they will be handy again for debugging.

You might look into the Test-Driven Development approach espoused
by Extreme Programming (XP) proponents.  Using a proper set of 
unit tests is probably going to be a better approach than scattering 
asserts throughout your code like that, and you would benefit from 
higher performance even without -O, an improved design, and less
need to debug at that level when you extend the module.

Just a thought, but I've never seen code that had so many relevant assert
statements that the program slowed to a quarter normal speed because of


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