Does '!=' equivelent to 'is not'

pirata pirata at mars.invalid
Tue Jun 17 05:29:53 CEST 2008

I'm a bit confusing about whether "is not" equivelent to "!="

if a != b:

if a is not b:

What's the difference between "is not" and "!=" or they are the same thing?

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