Python is a free, high-level4, highly readable programming language5.

Python is an interpreted6 language. The latest version of the interpreter is Python 3.

There are several ways7 to install the Python interpreter. One of the best (and easiest) is with the Anaconda distribution8.

Python instructions (code) is usually saved in a file with the extension .py and then ‘passed’ onto the Python interpreter. However, if you use the (powerful and versatile) Jupyter notebook, the file will be saved with a .ipynb extension.

  1. i.e. more user-friendly↩︎

  2. It also supports Object-Oriented Programming↩︎

  3. This means that Python executes commands, one instruction at a time.
    This is different from a compiled language (such as C, C++, Fortran) that ‘look’ at all the code at once.↩︎

  4. E.g. Mac OS X comes with Python preinstalled.↩︎

  5. You need others packages or modules to extend the capabilities of Python.The Anaconda distribution automatically installs some common packages (such as numpy, matplotlib, scipy) necessary for scientific work.
    The Anaconda distribution also installs several IDE (Integrated Development Environment)s such as Spyder and Jupyter. These software makes programming much more efficient, easier and fun.↩︎