Need help converting text to csv format

Joe Strout joe at
Fri Nov 21 17:28:59 CET 2008

On Nov 21, 2008, at 9:22 AM, Tim Golden wrote:

> Tim Chase wrote:
>>> >>> qfields = ['"' + fld.strip() + '"' for fld in (num,desc,date)]
>>> >>> out = qfields.join(',')
>> Just a quick note here to prevent the confusion of the OP...this  
>> should be
>>  ','.join(qfields)

Thanks Tim #1, for pointing out my error (my standard procedure with  
join is to [1] do it backwards, [2] curse myself, and [3] do it  
correctly, but it looks like I only copied step 1 into my email).

> To be honest, it's so easy to use the stdlib csv module
> that I'd always recommend that, especially as it covers
> all those annoying corner cases with embedded commas and
> quotes and stuff. And it's tested to hell and back.

And thanks Tim #2, for pointing that out.  I had frankly forgotten  
about it, but that's good advice.

> finally:
> ofile.close ()

A follow-up question here... is it really necessary to close things  
like files in Python?  I've been slumming it in the REALbasic  
community for the last decade, where you generally don't worry about  
such things, as any object that represents something "open" will  
automatically "close" itself when it dies (and since a closed object  
in those cases is useless, I'd rather not have it around after it's  
closed anyway). Is the same true in Python, or do we need to  
explicitly close things?

- Joe

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