Books Database

Alex Martelli aleaxit at
Thu Mar 6 17:55:21 CET 2003

On Thursday 06 March 2003 05:45 pm, John Hunter wrote:
> >>>>> "Eliran" == Eliran Gonen <eg at> writes:
>     Eliran> Alex Martelli <aleaxit at>:
>     >> NAH!  Why do so much work?!  Just read the db into memory,
>     >> remove whatever you want from the db _variable_, and overwrite
>     >> as above.  At 30KB file size, or even quite a bit more, that
>     >> will be lightning-fast.
>     Eliran> Nope. I meant, let say I have a file:
>     Eliran> 1|2|3|4 2|3|4|5 a|b|c|d d|b|a|c
>     Eliran> and the user want to remove line 3 (a|b|c|d).  So in my
>     Eliran> curses application he enters '3' and then I need to remove
>     Eliran> line 3. I can not know how many characters are there so I
>     Eliran> have to count \n's
> If you want to keep track of lines by number you can do
>   books = file('books.dat').readlines()
> If you want to remove the 4th entry (indexing from 0), do
>   books.remove(books[3])

No, don't do that -- if there was an identical entry earlier than the 4th 
one you'd be erroneously removing the earlier entry.  To remove the
4th item in a list such as books, do instead:
    del books[3]
simpler, faster, safer, no reason to do otherwise.

> You can process an individual line with
>   vals = books[2].split('|')
> When you are done and want to save the results, you can do
>   file('books.dat', 'w').writelines(books)
> But the point is that you process everything in memory and then
> overwrite the file when done rather that trying to manipulate
> the individual lines of the file directly.

Yes, I fully concur on this point.


More information about the Python-list mailing list