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Python Basics: Numbers and Math (Overview)

You don’t need to be a math whiz to program well. The truth is, few programmers need to know more than basic algebra.

Of course, how much math you need to know depends on the application you’re working on. In general, the level of math required to be a programmer is lower than you might expect.

Although math and computer programming aren’t as correlated as some people might believe, numbers are an integral part of any programming language, and Python is no exception.

In this video course, you’ll learn how to:

  • Create integers and floating-point numbers
  • Use arithmetic expressions, math functions, and number methods
  • Format and display numbers in strings
  • Create complex numbers

This video course is part of the Python Basics series, which accompanies Python Basics: A Practical Introduction to Python 3. You can also check out the other Python Basics courses.

Note that you’ll be using IDLE to interact with Python throughout this course. If you’re just getting started, then you might want to check out Python Basics: Setting Up Python before diving into this course.

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Course Slides (.pdf)

8.2 MB

00:00 Welcome to Python Basics: Numbers and Math.

00:06 Computers use numbers to represent all kinds of information, from text, images, music, and even videos like the one you’re currently watching. Pretty much everything is a number from the computer’s perspective.

00:17 For this reason, numbers and the ability to handle them play an important role in every programming language, including Python. Perhaps that’s also why some beginners believe they need strong mathematical skills to become programmers. However, that’s a common misconception. In reality, your elementary school knowledge of math should be more than enough to start coding.

00:38 The actual level of mathematical familiarity will depend on your specific role in the application you’re building. For example, you are less likely to need to know about linear algebra or statistics as a web developer than as a data scientist.

00:54 In this course, you’ll get an overview of the numeric types in Python, create integers, floats, and complex numbers, perform arithemetic operations, learn about the floating-point representation error, work with math functions and number methods, format and display numbers as strings.

01:12 During this course, you’ll be using IDLE, or the Integrated Development and Learning Environment, which comes with most Python distributions out of the box.

01:22 If you need a quick refresher on using IDLE, then check out one of the earlier video courses in the Python Basics series, entitled Setting Up Python. Alternatively, if you want to take a deeper dive, then you may watch this Starting With Python IDLE video course.

01:39 This video course is broken up into a few short lessons, which you should watch in sequence to get the most out of them. You can pause the video here and take a minute to get familiar with the table of contents. Without further ado, it’s time for you to get started by having an overview of the numeric types available in Python.

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