When I started my career, SAS was actually the only option for me, as a programming language, to prepare tables, listings and figures. I would call myself a seasoned SAS-Programmer, although I don’t program a lot anymore.

Nowadays, everybody is talking about Data Science and our Educating for the Future: Data Engineering project is an important puzzle piece in this Data Science section. Within this project, I became quickly aware that the programming language Python is one of the options to choose for data engineering or data science tasks. The research into the data engineering topic raised my interest more and more, and I wanted to learn more about Python. My preferred educational method is still to start reading a book, but there are countless books available.

Due to my day job, I was looking for a book which is easy to read, easy to follow and does not require any pre-experience with Python. The book which really caught my interest was Learn Python the Hard Way from Zed Shaw. This book gives an excellent introduction into Python. The author, Zed Shaw, wrote the book in several very short exercises, which the reader has to follow. Each exercise consists of some code, which the user needs to type into his or her computer. Starting from the usual “Hello World” example, the exercises introduce different methodologies and become more advanced from exercise to exercise. Each exercise ends with some study drills, which help to further dive into the specific topic. Also contained are drills to do some web searches, to learn more about some syntax. With this, the book allows a lot of interactivity, which I prefer when I dive into a new topic.

Have you read a good book and want to share your thoughts on it? Whether it is technical, scientific fact or page-turning fiction, we would love to share what you are reading. If you would like your book review to appear in a future newsletter, please contact comms@phuse.eu.