syntax error in first-time user script

john polo jpolo at
Thu Mar 23 21:57:37 EDT 2017

I am attempting to learn Python. I have no programming background. I'm 
on a computer with Windows 7. I checked the PATH in System Variables and 
Python and Python\Scripts are in the path. I have a book, Python for 
Biologists and it supplies example scripts, one is called 
The output from is

Comments are very useful!

I use cd to get to the directory with the example scripts and open a 
command prompt with "python" and get the prompt. I type


and get

"    File "<stdin>", line 1
SyntaxError: invalid syntax

Sorry, I realize this may not all line up like it does when I'm typing 
this in the email. The caret/error pointer is under the t in comment. I 
am not sure what is causing this error.

If I type


the output is

"Comments are very useful!
Traceback (most recent call last):
     File "<stdin>", line 1, in <module>
ModuleNotFoundError: No module named ''; 'comment'

If I use IDLE shell:


"SyntaxError: invalid syntax"

I know I can open the file in the editor and use F5, but shouldn't I be 
able to use a command from shell? How do I run from a command 
line without error? Or is that not possible?


More information about the Python-list mailing list