Just Beginning with Python

Ok … Noobie here and noobie with python. My experience with programming is VBA, Visual Basic, Java, and a smattering of stuff but never mastered.

Ok … I’m finding that code i wrote to scrape a website is breaking now that edge is trying to supplant IE. So I’m trying python as it seems to be recommended.

I’m struggling

So i’ve installed python from the python.org site. It seems, however, that I’ve installed alot of times. ( see attached image )

So I’m wondering … where is all this stuff on my computer. I tried a simple webscraping tutorial at howtowebscrape but it said nothing about the imports. So googled and somewhere found what I had to pip ( so not getting this stuff )

Now … I’ve been to like 60 web pages … read couple hundred paragraphs and now I’m beginning to feel like a drowning man being handed a gallon of water.

So … how does one reset ( i guess remove all related to python ) from my computer. How does one install this program and required imports sensibly. How do I go about finding what I’ve done and either going forward … I rather not stop … But swear I’m feeling overwhelmed and I have nobody close to go talk to.

Hi Barry,

My sympathies, sometimes the learning curve can be a bit harsh.

Especially since tech tutorials often suffer from what I call the
“…and now you have muffins!” problem. It goes like this.

If cooks wrote recipes like developers write tutorials, they would go
like this:

Sigh. The Discuss software ate my post. It seems that it deletes any
text that follows a line of dashes on its own.

I shall resend my message.

1 Like


Hi Barry,

My sympathies, sometimes the learning curve can be a bit harsh.

Especially since tech tutorials often suffer from what I call the
“…and now you have muffins!” problem. It goes like this.

If cooks wrote recipes like developers write tutorials, they would go
like this:

"Today we are going to make muffins. Muffins are made from flour. Flour
is made from wheat, which is a grain from the genus Triticum. Wheat was
first domesticated in the Fertile Crescent around eleven and a half
thousand years ago. You can purchase flour from your local supermarket
or grocery store, by exchanging money for goods and services.

"Preheat your oven to 200°C (400°F) while you prepare the muffin batter.
The oven is a big metal box with a glass window, usually found in your
kitchen. It can operate by electricity or gas. In a large mixing bowl,
sift together the flour, baking powder and sugar. Add one cup of cow’s
milk. Goat’s milk is an acceptible substitute if you don’t have a cow.
Add a quarter of a cup of oil.

"Stir all the ingredients together and place them in a muffin tin. Put
the muffin tin in the oven.

“And now you have muffins!”

So let’s start with the basics: do you have Python installed, and if so,
do you have it more than once?

I’m not a Windows user, so I don’t have much experience in Windows, but
you should be able to find Python under the Start menu. I presume that
if it is installed more than once, it will be listed multiple times.

I’m afraid I can’t see your attached screen shot, all I get is this:


which isn’t very helpful :frowning:

Can you use the Windows’ Find command to search for a file name called
“python.exe”? That should list any Python interpreters you have
installed, and will tell you if it is installed more than once or not.

If there is more than one, you should be able to find an uninstaller for
each of them. Run the uninstaller until there’s only one left. (I’m
afraid I can’t be more specific than that, I’m not a Windows guy.)

Then we can check whether Python will run. From the start menu, type
“Python” and hit enter. That should launch a console window and start up
the Python interpreter. You should get something like this:

Python 3.9.0 (default, Oct 24 2020, 11:55:24) 
[GCC 8.3.1 20190223 (Red Hat 8.3.1-2)] on linux
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.

except it won’t say Linux of course.

Enter quit() at the prompt >>> to exit. If you can get past that
stage, you have the Python interpreter successfully installed and we
can move on to the next step.

1 Like

Ok bear with me so … I’ve apparently tried this python stuff before. The image is from typing python into the start button on windows.

It shows that I have installed:
MySQL Connector Python v2.0…
Python 3.4.3
Python 3.6.3
Python 3.7 ( Python Software Foundation )
Python 3.7.2
Python 3.9.1
Python Launcher

Should I uninstall all versions of Python?
Should I just uninstall all the lower versions of Python?

Where do I find the import files, you know the things that get installed with PIP ( what ever that is )

By the way. Was able to get the example found at HowToWebScrape to work.


OS: Windows10

Yes I get Python 3.7.2 …
When I start python from the start menu.

I’m used to IDE’s like the VBA ide for excel, or the VB visual studio where you have to “check” dependencies which I gather is the “IMPORT” of when used in other languages.

As far as I can see most of these are installers . Python 3.7.2 is installed and shows up as Python 3.7. You can remove the installers (the ones with the 3-part version numbers) but for 3.9.1, which is current. Beware that if you want to use packages like numpy or scipy, you may need the previous version (3.8). You can install 3.9 alongside 3.7 or uninstall 3.7 and install 3.9. After installation I have seen it advised to remove the installer which I think is good advice.

The launcher enables you to start python (type py in a terminal session). More help can be found at Using Python on Windows

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Thank you for the link … I’ll have to dive more deeply into it… what little i’ve read it seems to sail right over my head.

What got me here was reading another webscraping tutorial somewhere was a discussion about http vs https.

There are times that I feel like i’ve fallen into the deepend.