How to (re)learn Python (especially if you are a Java programmer)

If you need to learn Python quickly for CS 237, or simply review from CS 111, don't worry, it is much easier than just about any other language, and all you really need to do is learn a few big differences from your current language (probably Java).

  1. First of all, you need to download and install the Anaconda distribution of Python 3 from this site: and get the Anaconda cheat sheet.
  2. Go through the Python Tutorial at at least up to section 4.7.2.
  3. Download and read through PythonForCS237.ipynb.
  4. Here are some other sites that look useful if your main language has been Java:
  5. If you want to get a text from Amazon, I would recommend one of the following, all available instantly for Kindle or the Amazon Cloud Reader:
  6. Good summary of the most useful Python libraries for Data Science.
  7. Finally, the following book from O'Reilly, available online through Mugar, is an excellent, complete summary of all that you need to know about Python for data science; it covers Python, Jupyter notebooks, Numpy, and Pandas, all things that we will use this term. This is a great text to have on your shelf if you intend to take any data science classes.

I would be an excellent idea to come to my Rich Hall Tutoring Hours on Tuesday nights from 7:30 - 10:30, at least for the first few weeks, and I can help you get through the rough spots as you first learn the language.


Here are some additional resources for various Python-related things: (numpy help) (matplotlib tutorial) (cs111 style python help) (practice)