Python Basics Write Simple Programs in the Popular Python Programming Language

  • Coen de Groot

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In this video course you will learn how to write simple programs in the popular and powerful Python programming language.

You’ll start by looking at how to install Python, and how to create and run simple Python scripts. You will then learn how to store and operate on information. You will see how to combine strings, split them up and search in strings, all with some very simple commands. We also explain how to work with numbers, such as adding or multiplying them. You will also see the different ways to store collections of values, for instance as a list or a dictionary. Next we explain how to control the flow of your program. You will discover how to make decisions and respond to different values (‘if’) and how to do the same thing many times (‘for’ and ‘while’).

To make it very practical you will learn how to manipulate files and spreadsheets. And to help you write larger programs and tackle more complicated tasks you will see how to split your program into simple steps. Learn to tap into the power of Python and its many libraries in one and a half hours.

What You Will Learn

  • Install and use Python

  • Store and process information - strings, numbers and collections of information items

  • Control the program flow - easily repeat actions and respond to the data by performing different actions as necessary

  • Break your program up into manageable chunks using functions

  • Work with files and spreadsheets

Who This Video is For

An absolute beginner with little or no programming experience who wants to learn to program, especially in Python

In this video course you will learn how to write simple programs in the popular and powerful Python programming language. You’ll start by looking at how to install Python, and how to create and run simple Python scripts. You will then learn how to store and operate on information.

About The Author

Coen de Groot

Coen de Groot is a freelance Python developer and trainer. He has been passionate about computers and programming since the late ‘70s when he built his first ‘computer’.

After studying Computer Science at Leiden University in the Netherlands, Coen worked as a software engineer for several companies, from a large oil company to small start-ups, working in software support, delivering training, and leading software teams.

For the past ten years Coen has been programming predominantly in Python, with hints of SQL, JavaScript, and others. He still enjoys learning more Python and passing on that knowledge to others face to face, in writing or on video.


Supporting material

View source code at GitHub.

About this video

Coen de Groot
Online ISBN
Total duration
1 hr 22 min
Copyright information
© Coen de Groot 2020

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Video Transcript


Welcome to Python basics. We will start with some brief introductions to Python– this course and myself– to give you some perspective. Python is a high level language. Instead of using zeros and ones and dealing with registers, Boolean algebra, and hardware interrupts to control your computer.

Python lets you work with numbers, text, and elegant commands and function. It is used for creating dynamic websites, analyzing and sharing large amounts of data, replacing daily admin tasks with simple scripts, and much more. You can use it for small scripts and large projects or start small and simple, then grow your program over time into something large and sophisticated.

Created about 30 years ago, it has steadily grown in functionality and popularity. Today it is probably one of the top three computer languages. The Python interpreter sits between you and the computer and executes the programs you write in the Python language.

Many other languages are compiled. With a compiled language you write the code and then compile it, the compiled code gets run. With an interpreter language like Python, you write the code and the interpreter runs it– no need to compile your code first. This makes Python more flexible and easier to start with. Some people think that Python, because it is interpreted, is too slow. And for some tasks it is but for most it is fast enough.

There are many ways to speed up Python code. For instance, you can use a compiled library to do some of the heavy lifting for you at speed or you can run tasks in parallel. Most importantly, Python is usually fast enough to run and is very fast when writing code. Saving a couple of hours of our programming time is often much more valuable than making a program run a couple of seconds faster. Python comes with batteries included.

Its large standard library contains scripts for handling leap years and time zones. Reading Excel, CSV, and XML files. Creating zip files, creating graphical user interfaces, and more. And there are over 200,000 additional Python libraries listed at the Python Package Index for data analysis, astrophysics, natural language processing, and much, much more.

This may be the start of your Python or your programming journey. I want you to have a strong start and give you everything you need to get up and running. By the end of the video, I aim for you to be able to write your own Python programs. When you have something that you want to do, some program that you want to write, you can often find examples online. After this course, you should be able to understand, use, and adapt many of these. But mainly I want you to be able to use Python to do something useful, fun, or interesting– whatever that may be for you.

My name is Coen de Groot. I am a freelance Python developer and trainer with many years experience. I help my clients make better use of the data, give their customers a better experience, write better Python code, and more.