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Formatting output - why we need to, and first Python example

I understand that if you win the lottery in a big way, a lot of long lost relatives who have fallen on hard times will come out of the woodwork ... and if you've got a lot of brothers and sisters you might find a surprising number of nieces and nephews!

Being a generous soul, you've decided to split £100,000 of your winnings equally among them all - that's all 17 of them - giving each of them £5882.35 .

That's part of an exercise we do early on during many of our Python courses such as Python Programming which started yesterday. The demonstration lets me show you how working with whole numbers (integers) gives the result 5882, and working with decimals (a.k.a. floats or reals) gives the result 5882.35294117647

Of course, what I really want to print out is "5882.35". Now the detail of that comes with string formatting and string handling - not on the first day of the course - but I do (and will) give delegates a taster to show that "yes, it can be easily done". The example code - using the % operator that has always been available since I started with Python, and the string.format method introduced in Python 2.6, enhanced in 2.7 and the way for the future in Python 3 - is [here].

Results?

  munchkin:opy grahamellis$ python trimmer
  With 17 in favour, each gets 5882.35294118
  With     17 in favour, each gets    5882.35
  With     17 in favour, each gets    5882.35
  With     17 in favour, each gets    5882.35
  With     17 in favour, each gets    5882.35
  munchkin:opy grahamellis$



(written 2012-10-09, updated 2012-10-13)

 
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
Y102 - Python - Fundamentals
  [4712] A reminder of the key issues to consider in moving from Python 2 to Python 3 - (2016-10-30)
  [4442] Mutable v Immuatble objects in Python, and the implication - (2015-02-24)
  [4324] Learning to program - variables and constants - (2014-11-22)
  [3917] BODMAS - the order a computer evaluates arithmetic expressions - (2012-11-09)
  [3551] Some terms used in programming (Biased towards Python) - (2011-12-12)
  [3278] Do I need to initialise variables - programming in C, C++, Perl, PHP, Python, Ruby or Java. - (2011-05-05)
  [3181] Beware - a=a+b and a+=b are different - Python - (2011-02-23)
  [3083] Python - fresh examples from recent courses - (2010-12-11)
  [2778] Learning to program in Python 2 ... and / or in Python 3 - (2010-05-24)
  [2442] Variable storage - Perl, Tcl and Python compared - (2009-10-08)
  [2368] Python - fresh examples of all the fundamentals - (2009-08-20)
  [1878] Pascals Triangle in Python and Java - (2008-11-10)
  [1461] Python - input v raw input - (2007-12-06)
  [1448] Question on division (Java) - Also Perl, PHP, Python ... - (2007-11-28)
  [1430] Integer v float - Python - (2007-11-12)
  [956] Python security - trouble with input - (2006-11-30)
  [748] Getting rid of variables after you have finished with them - (2006-06-06)
  [633] Copying a reference, or cloning - (2006-03-05)
  [328] Making programs easy for any user to start - (2005-05-29)

Y108 - Python - String Handling
  [4659] Prining a pound sign from Python AND running from the command line at the same time - (2016-03-03)
  [4595] Python formatting update - including named completions - (2015-12-10)
  [4593] Command line parameter handling in Python via the argparse module - (2015-12-08)
  [4360] Python - comparison of old and new string formatters - (2014-12-22)
  [4307] Identifying and clearing denial of service attacks on your Apache server - (2014-09-27)
  [4213] Formatting options in Python - (2013-11-16)
  [4152] Why are bus fares so high? - (2013-08-18)
  [4027] Collections in Python - list tuple dict and string. - (2013-03-04)
  [3796] Backquote, backtic, str and repr in Python - conversion object to string - (2012-07-05)
  [3469] Teaching dilemma - old tricks and techniques, or recent enhancements? - (2011-10-08)
  [3468] Python string formatting - the move from % to str.format - (2011-10-08)
  [3349] Formatting output in Python through str.format - (2011-07-07)
  [3218] Matching a license plate or product code - Regular Expressions - (2011-03-28)
  [3090] Matching to a string - what if it matches in many possible ways? - (2010-12-17)
  [2814] Python - splitting and joining strings - (2010-06-16)
  [2780] Formatted Printing in Python - (2010-05-25)
  [2765] Running operating system commands from your Python program - (2010-05-14)
  [2721] Regular Expressions in Python - (2010-04-14)
  [2692] Flexible search and replace in Python - (2010-03-25)
  [2406] Pound Sign in Python Program - (2009-09-15)
  [2284] Strings as collections in Python - (2009-07-12)
  [1876] Python Regular Expressions - (2008-11-08)
  [1608] Underlining in Perl and Python - the x and * operator in use - (2008-04-12)
  [1517] Python - formatting objects - (2008-01-24)
  [1195] Regular Express Primer - (2007-05-20)
  [1110] Python - two different splits - (2007-03-15)
  [970] String duplication - x in Perl, * in Python and Ruby - (2006-12-07)
  [954] Splitting Pythons in Bradford - (2006-11-29)
  [943] Matching within multiline strings, and ignoring case in regular expressions - (2006-11-25)
  [903] Pieces of Python - (2006-10-23)
  [773] Breaking bread - (2006-06-22)
  [560] The fencepost problem - (2006-01-10)
  [496] Python printf - (2005-11-15)
  [463] Splitting the difference - (2005-10-13)
  [324] The backtick operator in Python and Perl - (2005-05-25)


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Here comes Santa - on the train from Melksham to Swindon on 2nd December 2012
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Inheritance, Composition and Associated objects - when to use which - Python example
Formatting output - why we need to, and first Python example
Default local - a good choice by the author of Python
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