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Python Web Programming [Paperback]

Steve Holden
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Book Description

January 18, 2002 0735710902 978-0735710900 1

Python Web Programming is a practical introduction to building networked systems in the object-oriented framework of the Python language. It shows how to leverage the powerful Python libraries to build systems with less programming effort and easier maintenance. It leaves involved discussion of the Python language by itself to other books and dives right into using Python within web enables applications.

This book is intended for programmers who have experience with other programming languages (such a C or C++) and has some experience with building web-based systems. It is for the serious programmer who does not want a basic introductory to the language.

All code developed in the book will be available on the newriders.com website. This is an incredible asset because the Python language allows for modular programming between systems, thus readers in their projects can use code created in the book.


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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Python Web Programming is a practical introduction to building networked systems in the object-oriented framework of the Python language. It shows how to leverage the powerful Python libraries to build systems with less programming effort and easier maintenance. This book is primarily intended for experienced programmers who have used other languages (such as Perl, C or C++). It provides a high-level introduction to the language. Experience in building web-based systems is not required. Two chapters provide a concise introduction to the Python language, and there is extensive material on using the socket network API and the Python database API, as well as the many standard library modules. This practical material is underpinned by chapters which explain the technologies used. The book concludes by presenting a pure-Python web framework that can be used as the basis of the reader's own web applications. All code developed in the book will be available through the New Riders web site, allowing readers to use code from the book in their own projects.

About the Author

Steve Holden is a consultant, advising on system and network architectures and the design and implementation of programmed web systems for commercial clients. His client base includes GlobalPhone, an international telecommunications company, and the Prometric division of Thomson Learning. He was the technical lead on the major redesign of the National Science Foundation's web site in 1997.

Steve also teaches classes on TCP/IP, UNIX security, web security, intranet technologies, and database topics for Learning Tree International. Steve has spent time on both sides of the "academic divide" and was an early researcher into the integration of text, graphics, and databases while teaching commercial computing topics at Manchester University. This research led Steve to form Desktop Connection Limited, the first UK reseller of Frame Technology's (now Adobe's) FrameMaker software. His customers included British Telecom, British Aerospace, British Gas, and Sun Microsystems.

Steve was born and raised in the UK, and has traveled throughout Europe and the USA on teaching assignments. He now lives with his wife, Dorothy, in Fairfax, Virginia, where when not consulting, teaching, or writing, he enjoys looking for worthwhile American beers, entertaining friends and family, and reading science fiction.


Product Details

  • Paperback: 720 pages
  • Publisher: Sams Publishing; 1 edition (January 18, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0735710902
  • ISBN-13: 978-0735710900
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 7 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #895,287 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent example snippets; Clear explanations February 24, 2002
Format:Paperback
If you are going to be using Internet protocols, doing network programming, or web programming with Python, and these are new topics for you, I would highly recommend this book.
The book starts with a brief overview of the Python language. The author's intention is that someone with a fairly extensive programming background in other languages would be able to pick up enough Python from this overview to be able to do the rest of the programming in the book. Perhaps so. I already know Python, but did find the summary in the front informative.
I really like the fact that nearly every page has a code snippet on it. Examples are brief and to the point. The author explains each line of code and has a very direct and clear way of explaining things. I found the explanations easy to read and understand.
After the brief Python Language overview, comes an overview of sockets and socket programming. I've been trying to learn a bit about the whole topic of sockets by searching the web and nothing I found on the web explained it as clearly as this book. I now appreciate the difference between TCP and UDP protocols and have an idea of the situations in which I would want to use each. If you want to learn low-level sockets, or how to write your own socket protocols, this is not the book you are looking for. This book basically assumes you will go with either TCP or UDP (and ignores the other types of sockets available in the Python socket library). However, these will probably suit most people's needs.
The author then walks you through each of the Internet data-handling libraries in Python, such as the telnetlib, ftplib, poplib, smtplib and so on. He gives examples of working code for each library, showing first how to implement clients, and later on how to implement servers.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good introductory work curiously lacking in some areas February 4, 2002
By robin
Format:Paperback
Though the title makes it appear more limited, this volume "is intended to be a suitable introductory Python book", an all-in-one reference to not only web applications, but also general client-server networking, relational databases, XML, and Internet protocols like POP and NNTP. Though not the best introduction to Python (I would instead recommend O'Reilly's Learning Python) it does a good job of gathering together disparate information and presenting the topics clearly and with well thought-out code.
However, this is not a good book on CGI, HTML form handling, templating, and other common web application tasks. Holden chooses as his major example to extend an asynchronous web server into a web application framework. Thus he does not deal with Apache (or any other pre-existing server) and Python integration issues.
The coverage of Internet protocols given here is only slightly extended from the standard documentation. IMAP4 gets one paragraph, in which Holden notes its superiority to POP3 but laments the lack of space to cover it! However, non-Python topics like client-server architectures are explained at a nice level for beginners.
There is a balance of code and exposition in this book, both presented clearly though in a rather formal tone. The layout is excellent, being very easy to read and pleasing on the eye. The index is great.
This book is recommended for inexperienced programmers but lacks enough original work to make it of value to those already coding for the web.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Book, A Great Resource! January 27, 2002
Format:Paperback
Python Web Programming by Steve Holden with David Beazley; New Riders, 2002, 691 pages.
Python Web Programming is a great resource for web programmers. I have found not found this much information, on all aspects of web programming with Python, in any other book. It is extremely well
written and a joy to read.
The book first gives an overview of the Python language. This overview is well worth reading, even if you are already a Python expert. Steve Holden has a unique and interesting perspective on the matters at hand, and he gives very detailed expositions on the whys and wherefores behind various Pythonic idioms. I found that this section gave me a different point of view and a deeper understanding of several aspects of Python's design and structure than I had previously realized.
Next, in a very rich and informative section, over 100 pages are devoted to Network Programming in Python. After giving a very clear and detailed overview of basic network programming basics, the author shows how the Python libraries can be used to do meaningful client side and then server side web programming. I am sure that I will come back often to this section as I further explore CGI programming and also server side programming. The book gives good instructions on how to practice server side programming even if you only have a simple web connection. This section is really valuable.
Database Programming in Python then receives over 100 pages of work. I am weak in this area, but the explanations in this section gave me a good enough background to better understand the database parts of later web programming topics.
Next, almost 100 pages are devoted to XML and Python, including SAX.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Good book, but too outdated
Make sure you don't have other sources of information before buying this book. Technology moves too quickly and a book printed on 2001-2002 no longer holds true for most (Google... Read more
Published 22 months ago by Miguel Morales
1.0 out of 5 stars Badly out of date
Don't waste your money on this badly out of date text. It was published in 2002 and teaches out-of-date concepts like XML and CGI. There's not a single mention of Django, web. Read more
Published on August 18, 2011 by Ian Crosby
2.0 out of 5 stars Not right on the mark
If you want to use Python to write a Web Server, this might be the book for you.
If you want to use Python to write a server-side script, look elsewhere.
Published on February 13, 2008 by pad_dad
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book somewhat let down by loss of focus at the end.
After reading positive reviews here and Amazon.co.uk decided to buy the book.

There is not much to add to positive points noted by previous reviews but they have omitted... Read more
Published on March 11, 2006 by P. J. Iivonen
3.0 out of 5 stars Too much background information
The start of the book provides a good start to understanding python. As the book progresses there are several chapters which do not relate to Python much at all. Read more
Published on November 21, 2005 by Peter Harrison
5.0 out of 5 stars Trying to Learn Python? Check this book out!
This book will help anyone trying to learn the Python language. I have used this book many times while writing Python code and it always remains close by! Read more
Published on November 27, 2002 by "brav0c0rps"
5.0 out of 5 stars How to leverage the powerful Python libraries
Python Web Programming is a practical, 720 page introduction and guide to building networked systems in the object-oriented framework of the Python language. Read more
Published on June 7, 2002 by Midwest Book Review
4.0 out of 5 stars More than what's in the title
This book covers a great deal more than python web programming.
You obviously get a nice view of the Python programming language, but also gain some good insights about python... Read more
Published on April 30, 2002 by Alexandre Fayolle
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
This is an excellent book, which not only gives a useful introduction to Python, but also gives very good introduction to the topics of networking, databases, and anything and... Read more
Published on April 20, 2002 by Dave Swegen
5.0 out of 5 stars Substantially Impressed!
This is one of the best overall web programming books I've seen. The author has a great ability to present highly technical information in a very straight forward, easy to... Read more
Published on February 23, 2002 by Steve
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