Cleaning up conditionals

Deborah Swanson python at
Sat Dec 31 16:12:06 EST 2016

> From: Tim Chase
> Sent: Saturday, December 31, 2016 12:41 PM
> On 2016-12-30 19:59, Deborah Swanson wrote:
> > Similar, actually the same as Cameron suggested. I really need to 
> > revisit testing for empty. I probably rejected it early on for some 
> > bad reason (you don't understand everything that goes wrong when 
> > you're learning).
> If your data is anything like what I often get, it had spaces 
> in it, and
>   x = " "
>   if x:
>     print("yep")
>   else:
>     print("nope")
> prints "yep".  So when processing data like this, I prefer to 
> take a cleaning pass over everything to strip out 
> leading/trailing whitespace before attempting to use any logic on it.
> -tkc

Good point. Like I said earlier, I don't remember the specific contexts
that testing for empty failed for me, but blank spaces in data that I
didn't realize would be there (or look for it) is a strong possibility.
In any event, I should use tests for empty more, and see if and why it
fails. Obviously, experienced python coders successfully use it all the

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