Take the 2-minute tour ×
Programmers Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professional programmers interested in conceptual questions about software development. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I have tried to learn C++ and Java before, but the syntax confused me. I definitely will be learning them after, but for now, where is the best place for a guy who has programmed before to learn python? Do you concur with me learning Python? Should I stick with Java or C++ before?

share|improve this question
    
Which languages do you already know? –  Maxpm Mar 28 '11 at 0:03
    
Since the syntax confuses you,go for "Anatomy of programming languages" and once you are done,go for "The Object-Oriented Thought Process 3ed". –  Gandalf Mar 28 '11 at 12:23
    
possible duplicate of How do I learn Python from zero to web development? –  gnat Sep 15 '13 at 9:47
add comment

closed as too broad by gnat, Thomas Owens Sep 15 '13 at 11:13

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

7 Answers

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Start by reading existing questions and answers on this topic:

share|improve this answer
    
One of the links is dead (deleted question), could you please update? Also, would you mind explaining more on what these links do and why do you recommend these as answering the question asked? "Link-only answers" are not quite welcome at Stack Exchange –  gnat Sep 16 '13 at 6:55
add comment

The MIT: Introduction to Computer Science and Programming is a great place to start. Though I don't know what experience you've had with programming, the video lectures, assignments, practice tests, etc. seem like compelling learning tools, especially if you've had problems learning a new language in the past.

If you do not excel in a semi-classroom environment, Jonathan Khoo's links provide several good resources as well.

share|improve this answer
add comment

In my opinion, the best place is "The Python Tutorial" available in the python documentation site. Its simple and straight forward.

Other beginner book is: A Byte of Python. And after that you can take up "Thinking in Python" by Bruce Eckel (who has recommended Byte of Python for beginners).

share|improve this answer
add comment

I would just start with the Python Tutorial, but nothing beats experience.

After you learn the basics, program something! If you can't think of something to program, Project Euler can give you something to do. You'll be forced to learn some new math tricks at the same time.

After you get comfortable with whatever you're currently doing, learn how to use another feature/library in Python.

It also helps to have others look at your code to tell you when you're doing something wrong. If you know anybody in person that can look at your code and give you feedback, that will work best.

share|improve this answer
add comment

My answer isn't so much about where you can learn python but more about the issue of going back to C++ and Java later. A very wise person once told me that anything worth having is worth fighting for. When learning something new it always takes a bit of time. But before we know it it becomes manageable then easy. I know it probably feels frustrating as its easy to get started with programming with the idea that you're going to be able to develop great applications fairly early in. It becomes a little discouraging sometimes when this doesn't happen. I would recommend hanging in there and sticking with what you've already started. Once you've gotten the hang of one of them (Java will likely be a little easier to learn first) then start in on the other or Python if you wish. The struggle is definitely worth it in the end. There are many out there that have been in your shoes. Good luck!

share|improve this answer
    
how does this answer the question asked? –  gnat Sep 16 '13 at 10:40
    
OP: "Should I stick with Java or C++ before?" –  Kenneth Sep 16 '13 at 13:45
add comment

where is the best place for a guy who has programmed before to learn python?

"Programming Python" by Mark Lutz is an excellent book for new Python programmers.

Other then this, solving a real problem I'm having has always been the best way to learn a new language for me.

Do you concur with me learning Python? Should I stick with Java or C++ before?

If you ask 10 different people what language is best for any particular goal, you are likely to end up with 10 different answers.

Personally, I find the Python approach very intuitive and natural, and the C/Java approach clunky and ugly. I know many people who feel the opposite, and there are many many more opinions.

My advice: just choose a language and start programming in it. You'll quickly find out if you like it or not. If you like it, stick with it. If you don't, try something else.

You will never waste your time, having knowledge of any language is a valuable asset in the long run.

share|improve this answer
add comment

"Dive into Python 3" is the most complete and excellent introduction to the language and concepts.

see: http://www.diveinto.org/python3/


There is also now obsolete first edition, which was covering Python 2.x "Dive into Python"

Both of the books you can either read it on-line, download ebook or buy printed book.

see: http://www.diveintopython.net/

share|improve this answer
add comment

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.