There are a number of great options available when it comes to programming anything in Python, or indeed any programming language.
If you are using a Windows machine for Python, you will no doubt have Idle installed as this is bundled in with the installer.
Idle offers many great features, in that it has a ‘code as you go’ area and type in basic programs to test out code. However, if you wanted to write more complex code, the option is there. Selecting File > new, opens a text editor similar to notepad with the added addition that any keywords are colour coded.
Whilst I would consider Idle great for beginners, there are Integrated Development Environments that exist to make workflow more seamless. For example, Visual Studio provides the ability to write Python code and upload it straight to Github. For larger projects, this can be incredibly helpful to update a project in seconds, instead of having to switch between multiple applications.
One of the downsides to working with Visual Studio is that Python functionality is not enabled by default. It must be added as an extension from the store.
Another example of a great IDE is PyCharm.
Pycharm is optimised for Python Development. Similar to Visual Studio, Pycharm has includes the Terminal and a Python console in one place so that the code can be run directly from the application. An addition to Pycharm is that when the application is opened it provides a ‘tip of the day’. The option exists to turn off the notifications, however, I have left it on as it is providing some useful tips that I can apply to my coding journey.
I have only been coding for about ten weeks, so this is a fairly limited review and doesn’t cover the full functionality and possibilities that these applications provide. It is also the reason; I am not including more examples within this blog post.
There is one more application that I have used briefly that I would like to make mention of, and that application is Vim within the Linux Terminal.
Vim has a steep learning curve and can be difficult to get grips with at first, however, with more use the easier it becomes.
There are other IDE’s and text editors available. Be sure to do some research and find the one that works for you and makes your workflow just a little bit easier.