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Formatting Python Comments

In this lesson, you’ll see what makes a good comment. You’ll learn conventions for writing

  • Block comments
  • Inline comments and
  • Docstrings

You’ll learn how to write block comments that span multiple paragraphs:

def quadratic(a, b, c, x):
    # Calculate the solution to a quadratic equation using the 
    # quadratic formula
    # 
    # There are always two solutions to a quadratic equation,
    # x_1 and x_2
    x_1 = (- b+(b**2-4*a*c)**(1/2))
    x_2 = (- b-(b**2-4*a*c)**(1/2))
    return x_1, x_2

Next, you’ll see why inline comments can be unnecessary and distracting if they state the obvious. You’ll learn how to write useful inline comments without cluttering your code:

# Don't do:

x = 'John Smith' # Student Name

# Do:

student_name = 'John Smith'

You’ll also cover how to write documentation strings:

def quadratic(a, b, c, x):
    """Solve quadratic equation via the quadratic formula.

    A quadratic equation has the following form:
    ax**2 + bx + c = 0

    There are always two solutions to a quadratic equation:
    x_1 and x_2.
    """

    x_1 = (- b+(b**2-4*a*c)**(1/2))
    x_2 = (- b-(b**2-4*a*c)**(1/2))

    return x_1, x_2

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