Head First Python, 2nd Edition
A Brain-Friendly Guide
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: November 2016
Pages: 624

Want to learn the Python language without slogging your way through how-to manuals? With Head First Python, you’ll quickly grasp Python’s fundamentals, working with the built-in data structures and functions. Then you’ll move on to building your very own webapp, exploring database management, exception handling, and data wrangling. If you’re intrigued by what you can do with context managers, decorators, comprehensions, and generators, it’s all here. This second edition is a complete learning experience that will help you become a bonafide Python programmer in no time.

Why does this book look so different? Based on the latest research in cognitive science and learning theory, Head First Pythonuses a visually rich format to engage your mind, rather than a text-heavy approach that puts you to sleep. Why waste your time struggling with new concepts? This multi-sensory learning experience is designed for the way your brain really works.

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oreillyHead First Python, 2nd Edition
 
4.8

(based on 6 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to understand (5)
  • Helpful examples (5)
  • Accurate (4)
  • Well-written (4)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Novice (3)
  • Student (3)

Reviewed by 6 customers

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

This Is a Great Book

By JSMc

from Las Cruces, NM

About Me Retired It Professional

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Accurate
  • Concise
  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Jumps Right In
  • Well-written

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Experienced Programmers

    Comments about oreilly Head First Python, 2nd Edition:

    I started programming in 1969 on an IBM 360 with 64KB memory. I had been hired by the local power company along with an ex-meter reader to form the core of their new programming department. Although neither of us had any background in computers, there were few around who had any hands-on with the new 360 system who didn't work for IBM. Also, there were very few schools which had caught up to incorporating teaching programming based on 360 DOS into the curriculum.

    Therefore, the method the company chose for us learn to program the beast in Basic Assembler Language, was to give us an office with two large stacks of IBM manuals and say we had six months to become productive. I go into this detail to illustrate that I am no newcomer to learning a new programming language on my own entirely from books.

    I am now retired but several years ago I decided it would be fun to add Python to my repertoire of programming languages. I now own probably every book claiming to teach one the language, but until I got my hands on Head First Python I have given up with each attempt to stick to the course.

    I believe the difference between this book and all the ones I tried previously is that Patrick Barry starts out immediately introducing Python concepts that are far more advanced than most authors. When one has twenty some programming languages under their belt they already know about variables and program flow. Although the syntax may vary slightly from one language to the next, the concepts are the much the same. So I have found myself totally bored by about the fourth chapter in every book I've tried before this one, saying "Yeah, yeah, when are we going to get past this basic crap and learn how to do something."

    I think my problem in the past is I have gone into the process with the idea of reproducing a game program that I designed many years ago to first teach myself TRS-80 Basic. The tools that I wanted to do that, while not very complex, are beyond what every previous book covers in the early chapters.

    Barry, on the other hand skips the usual Hello World introduction and immediately jumps into Python's data structures. Here was exactly what I needed to build my old Basic program, and I started coding it alongside the example code from the book. Now I've reached the book's fifth chapter, and my concept of the game has gone from running as an interactive program to being a web-app running in my browser.

    I don't know if this approach, which I guess is common to all the Head First books. is going to be right for those who are just beginning to learn programming, but I certainly must recommend it to experienced programmers who are trying to add something new to their stable of languages.

     
    4.0

    Good approach with working examples of code

    By Tom George

    from Landenberg, PA

    Verified Buyer

    Comments about oreilly Head First Python, 2nd Edition:

    Installing functions as modules is wrong for Debian Jessie. Neither setuptools nor disttools provide pip as a module. From the os command line

    pip install vsearch-1.0.tar.gz

    works, puts vsearch.py in /usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages BUT

    I am working with python3.4. The pip man page indicates there should be a pip3 but there is no pip3. I have been unable to find a way to install vsearch.py in /usr/local/lib/python3.4/dist-packages.

    Nevertheless if python3.4 is started from the command line import vsearch works regardless of the current working directory so I guess python3.4 checks for 2.7 modules.

    It took me the better part of a day to work this out.

     
    5.0

    So far I like it!

    By Craig

    from Iowa

    About Me Developer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Accurate
    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Intermediate

      Comments about oreilly Head First Python, 2nd Edition:

      I purchased this book with the intention of learning Python. I am using the book as intended, actually working the lessons as they are presented, and I am very pleased.

       
      5.0

      Good intro to Python for new and experienced developers

      By jlcooke

      from Palm Coast, FL

      About Me Designer, Developer, Maker, Sys Admin

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Accurate
      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Intermediate
        • Novice
        • Student

        Comments about oreilly Head First Python, 2nd Edition:

        I'm a huge fan of Head First and this Python (2Ed) book is a good example of the series. I made it through much of the 1st edition and this book is a re-write updated for Python 3, reorganized to address new topics and new language features.

        As with other HF series books, the author guides you through learning Python with copious examples (even helping you to make sure you organize your files as you go -- not overwriting the older exercises as you build to new topics).

        The code for the exercises are provided on the book's webpage and the author provides how-to guidance on developing and running the code in a Windows or Linux environment (I'm doing both).

        Great introduction to Python and keeping you on track with the inclusion of PEP "best practices".

        (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Python made simple

        By Welshman

        from Toronto

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy to understand
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Novice
          • Student

          Comments about oreilly Head First Python, 2nd Edition:

          I have been trying to learn Python for a while and purchased and read a number of books on the subject. Coming from 'C' I found the Pythonic method of programming a little difficult to understand. This book explained the Pythonic way of thinking. It not only explained the Python syntax but how and why of using various Python constructs.
          Now I can start programing in Python.

          (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Finally, a python book I can connect with!

          By Tom

          from Canberra, Australia

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Accurate
          • Concise
          • Easy to understand
          • Helpful examples
          • Well-written

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Novice
            • Student

            Comments about oreilly Head First Python, 2nd Edition:

            I have tried with many books to get started with Python. This one has just the right mix of readable explanation, pacing/order of content, and technical authority to give me the confidence that I am learning the things that matter to get started. I am about halfway through and I am looking forward to the rest of the journey. The humour supports the learning path without being corny.

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