Malcom Ridgers is a tech expert at BairesDev specializing in the software outsourcing industry.
Python was created by Guido van Rossum and originally released in 1990. The original scope of the language was focused on code readability with significant use of whitespace, language constructs, and an object-oriented approach.
The goal of Python was to help developers write clear, logical code for projects of all sizes. This open-source, high-level language includes built-in data structures, dynamic typing, and binding (ideal for Rapid Application Development), as well as scripting and connecting existing components together.
One of the main reasons developers enjoy working with Python is because of how productive it is. Python doesn’t require a compilation step, so the edit-test-debug cycle is very efficient. This also helps to make debugging Python applications incredibly simple. A bug or improper input won’t cause a segfault. Instead, when the interpreter runs into an error it merely raises an exception.
But before you can get to the point where interpreters are throwing exceptions, you’ve got to write the code. And while many Python developers are quite comfortable with working from within a simple text editor, others do prefer a more standard Integrated Development Environment (IDE).
Fortunately, there are a number of outstanding IDEs that work quite well with Python. Let’s take a look at a few of these editors to see if one of them might meet your Python software development needs.
Online Python Compiler
The one caveat to using IDLE is that it’s not optimized for larger projects. Because of this, you’ll most likely use this IDE for the task of getting up to speed with the Python language.
The Spyder feature list includes code by cell, line, or file; plot histogram or time-series and make changes in dataframe or numpy array; automatic code completion and horizontal/vertical splitting. Other features include multi-language editor, IPython Console support, variable explorer, built-in profiler and debugger, and an extensive array of plugins.
Sublime Text 3
Price: $80.00 USD, but there is a free trial.
Visual Studio Code
VS Code has one of the finest UX on the market and can very quickly become your favorite editor and IDE.
The Thonny interface is intentionally simple, but also includes a number of useful features, such as syntax highlighting, a debugger, code completion, and step-through expression evaluation.
The one caveat to using PyCharm is that it can be a bit resource intensive. Low-powered machines will get bogged down when using this tool.
Price: There are two versions of PyCharm – a free community version and a pro version with support for Web development. The pro version is $199.00 for the first year, $159.00 for the second year, and $119.00 for every year after.
If Python is your jam, there are plenty of tools to help make your development much easier. Whether you’re new to the language, or a seasoned professional, you’ll find an Integrated Development Environment perfectly suited for your needs.