Python in Practice

Create Better Programs Using Concurrency, Libraries, and Patterns
by Mark Summerfield

ISBN-10: 0321905636 – ISBN-13: 978-0321905635

Dr Dobbs JOLT best book award winner

Chapter 1 is available free from InformIT; click the “Sample Content” tab, then scroll to the bottom and click the “Download the sample pages” link.

This book is aimed at existing Python programmers who want to take their Python programming to the next level. (Those new to Python 3 should read Programming in Python 3 first.)

The book's first few chapters show how to implement the programming design patterns in Python 3 to produce more elegant and maintainable code. The book then goes on to look at how to improve program performance using concurrency, using external libraries written in C or C++, and using compiled Python. The book also introduces a couple of approaches to high-level networking that allow programmers to focus on their application logic and leave the low-level details to libraries. Then, the book introduces GUI programming with Tkinter. And the book finishes up with a chapter on 3D graphics using OpenGL.

The book is packed with examples that not only illustrate the major topics it covers, but which also demonstrate many useful Python features and idioms. The book also introduces many modules both from the standard library and from important third-party libraries.

JOLT award

The book is 336 pages, and is published by Addison-Wesley Professional. It can be ordered from InformIT,,, or from your preferred online or local book store.

Only the English printed editions are definitive—although available in electronic formats, "ebooks" usually restrict your rights, and they are often retypeset which can introduce errors. A legal PDF version is available from InformIT. Translations are arranged by the publisher and their quality can vary considerably.

Q&A with 2014 Jolt Award Winner: "Python in Practice" Author.


The source code is available in two formats, pipbook-1.0.tar.gz (274K suitable for any platform), and (418K Windows line endings) [updated 2015-10-22]—they are GPL-licensed. There is also an Errata [updated 2013-10-22].

Table of Contents

Python in Practice book cover


See also my Python Programming Tips.

For more about Python see

Two other useful books on Python 3, and worthy companions to this book are the Python Cookbook (3rd ed.) by David Beazley and Brian K. Jones, and Fluent Python by Luciano Ramalho.

Like all my books and most of my other writings, this book was written using The Lout Typesetting System.

* Doug Hellman is a well known Python expert and author of The Python Standard Library by Example.

Book Cover