Newcomer Help

Rustom Mody rustompmody at
Mon Feb 10 18:07:14 CET 2014

On Monday, February 10, 2014 9:40:22 PM UTC+5:30, Walter Hughey wrote:
> I am new to Python programming, actually new to any programming language. I sent the email below to the "python... at a few days ago. So far I have not seen a reply, actually, I have not seen anything from pythonmac in any emails although I am supposed to be a member.
> I don't know if I am sending these to the correct place or if I am not receiving emails from the pythonmac list. I would appreciate any assistance either in how do I get to the pythonmac list or answers to the issue below. I went to the pythonmac list because I am trying to run Python 3.3 on a Mac computer.
> Thank you,
> Walter
> From: "Walter Hughey" <wkhu... at>
> To: python... at
> Sent: Friday, February 7, 2014 11:54:49 AM
> Subject: Newcomer Help
> Greetings,
> I am new at Python programming, technically a newbie at writing programming code. I have been involved in the maintenance of computers for several years and have decided to increase my knowledge and experience. I am taking a course that - although not a programming course - does require writing of code. I am trying to use Python to write the code.
> I use a Mac computer and the first issue is getting working with Python. The computer I currently use is running Mac OS X 10.6.8, Intel Core i5 Processor, with 4GB RAM. It has Python 2.3, 2.5, and 2.6 installed by Apple. I have added Python 3.3, the version our Professor recommended. I have checked out the Python installed by Apple and can enter in code and it works, but I need to create a file, run it, and then provide it for the Professor to grade and I don't know how with the Apple installed version.
> While reading about Python, I saw comments about the note concerning outdated software:  If you are using Python from a
> 64-bit/32-bit Python installer for Mac OS X 10.6 and later,
> you should only use IDLE or tkinter with an updated
> third-party Tcl/Tk 8.5, like
> ActiveTcl 8.5
> installed.
> I located, downloaded and installed the recommended version of ActiveTcl When I open Idle, I see a warning that "The version of Tcl/Tk (8.5.7) in use may be unstable."  I received this warning both before and after installing the software above. I open Idle, choose "New File" then most often the computer will freeze, Idle does nothing, cannot enter text into the text box, cannot close the application either with the red circle or by selecting Idle>Close Idle. As often as that, Idle freezes as soon as I open new file, and I cannot close without resorting to Force Quit. 
> I have removed and re-installed Python after downloading and installing the Tcl/Tk software and it does not help. I have seen this work fine on a Mac running Mac OS X 10.8.3. I really just need to get this working on the older version.
> A am not only new to Python, I am new on this list and hope I have started my stay here in the correct manner!

Hi! You have started on a clear note and are welcome here.
I dont know anything about macs so hopefully someone else will give you
more specific answers.

However can you check that python interpreter runs in a shell, and that
after starting it if you type say:
2 + 3 RETURN
you get 5

If that is the case you can still develop the way most python programmers 
develop, viz
Write your code in a normal text editor
Load it into the interpreter
Check it
Go back to the editor and continue writing/correcting the code

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