Getting Set Up

Setting up a programming environment

Downloading Python

To download Python, go to the Python Website and download and install the latest version of Python 3. To install, just run the installer that you have downloaded from the website. Follow the installer’s instructions, and you should be good to go!

Installing an IDE

On top of installing Python 3, you’ll want to install an IDE. An IDE or Integrated Development Environment is an application that allows you to easily create, organize, and edit files in any Python project. We recommend using VS Code or Atom. We will be using these to work with Python files and write our Python programs. The moment we save a file as a Python file (.py file extension), the IDE will know that it is a Python file and will offer shortcuts and color coding to make programming in Python a lot easier.

For now, create a file for working with Python. Call it "" and leave it in your "Documents" for now. Open it in your IDE. Follow along in writing the code that we walk through in the initial lessons. To test the code and see the output, open the terminal (Mac OS X) or the Command Prompt (Windows).

Then, type "cd documents" This navigates to the Desktop directory. Now, to actually run the python file that is in your Documents directory, type "python3". If this does not work, just type "python" instead. This will run the commands and code in the file and show the output in the terminal or command prompt window. You won’t see any output until we actually start sending output out of the program, which we will do in later lessons. Feel free to follow along or try out what you learn in different ways. Practice makes Perfect!

That’s It!

We have finished setting up for Python programming. We will start actually working with Python in the next section!