examining an initial, pristine python3 shell session

Robert P. J. Day rpjday at crashcourse.ca
Wed Jan 20 16:02:42 CET 2010

On Wed, 20 Jan 2010, Alf P. Steinbach wrote:

> * Robert P. J. Day:

   ... snip ...

> >   what other useful commands might i run immediately after
> > starting a session whose output would be informative?  i can
> > certainly poke at some of those objects to see them in more
> > detail.  i'm just curious what others might recommend.  thanks.
> That depends on what you mean by "newbie".
> If it's someone who knows a little bit of programming but is new to
> Python, then 'help' would definitely be about the first thing I'd
> show her.
> But if it's someone who doesn't even know anything about
> programming, then I'd recommend (blatant plug) <url:
> http://tinyurl.com/programmingbookP3> -- its first two chapters are
> constructed around complete, concrete examples. However, you would
> have to adapt just the *sense* of the first chapter, which is only
> about tool usage, to *nix, since it's written for Windows. I'd not
> dive into 'help' for the someone who doesn't know anything because
> it gets technical pretty fast, and because she will get back to that
> on her own when it's time.
> Whatever you do, and whatever the background of the newbie, do
> introduce turtle graphics right away.

  ah, thank you, i appreciate that reference.  i'm expecting the small
audience to be relatively tech-savvy with OO dev experience, and i'm
betting that some of them will be wondering right off the very first
thing *i* was wondering -- when i start that python3 shell and get
dumped into it, what am i looking at?  which is why i wanted to
collect a few commands to give the attendees at least a vague idea of
what was already there.

  i've collected the following to start with:

>>> dir()
['__builtins__', '__doc__', '__name__', '__package__']
>>> globals()
... stuff ...

then move on to examine *those* things:

>>> type(dir)
<class 'builtin_function_or_method'>
>>> type(globals)
<class 'builtin_function_or_method'>
>>> type(__builtins__)
<class 'module'>

zoom in a bit further and pick on specific examples:

>>> dir(__builtins__)
... lots of output ...

and so on.  as i said, i know it looks dry but i figure i can take 5
minutes or so just to lay out the terrain and what a shell session
looks like before you do *anything* with it.  and i'm betting most of
my audience will appreciate getting that high-level view before
launching into some programming.  they'll just want to know the
initial session setup before they start importing stuff into it.


Robert P. J. Day                               Waterloo, Ontario, CANADA

            Linux Consulting, Training and Kernel Pedantry.

Web page:                                          http://crashcourse.ca
Twitter:                                       http://twitter.com/rpjday

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