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Anyone have experience with either of these books

Programming Python http://shop.oreilly.com/product/9780596158118.do


Learning Python http://shop.oreilly.com/product/9780596158071.do

Not sure where I fall with these books in terms of skill and knowledge. Looking through the table of contents for Learning Python I recognize everything and know what they are, but don't have a great masterful grasp of most of the stuff but I am afraid too much of it will be stuff I already know. On the flip side, Programming Python might be too advanced for me.

EDIT Seems Programming Python is mainly geared towards Python 3.x but I'm still using 2.6.

They're looooooong. I read through "Learning Python" and came out a better Python programmer because of it, but it was an epic journey that may as well have involved hobbits and a wizard.

I also strongly disliked the author's choice of examples. In particular, the examples for metaclasses and decorators were repetitive and un-Pythonic. If you want private member functions, you're probably better off using a language like Java that supports them rather than trying to hack them in using one of the several ways explained in the book.

If you can handle the length and the trailing off of example quality near the end, it's a solid and comprehensive coverage of Python the language. In terms of the 3.x/2.x split, "Learning Python" covered both comprehensively. The differences aren't huge, and it's mostly just a matter of the example code being adapted to work in one or the other.

I can really recommend Learning Python. It's a great book, it goes into all the fundamental concepts of python really well and in a very readable manner. I read it after I had a year of experience with python and while I also recognized all the concepts, I learned a lot from the book and it's a constant reference when I need to figure out why something is the way it is in python.

I also have Programming Python, but I mainly use that for reference on some advanced topics. I hate the hundreds of pages it spend on GUI programming though...

Python 2.7 almost all features of Python 3, and Python 2.6 has almost as many.

Don't let that stop you from buying a book you like.

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