ANN: ReportLab PDF Processing with Python Kickstarter

Have you ever wondered how to create PDF Reports programmatically? If so, then this is the book for you! In ReportLab: PDF Processing with Python, you will learn how to generate PDFs using the popular Python programming language. The code in this book will run on all 3 major platforms:

  • Windows
  • Mac
  • Linux

ReportLab is used by WikipediaNASAFidelityHP and many other large and small organizations.

ReportLab is fast and reliable. I have been using it for the past 10+ years professionally. It’s also quite easy to learn. In this book you will learn all you need to know to generate your own PDFs.

Here’s a sample of just some of things you will learn:

  • How to embed fonts
  • Generate multipage documents
  • Add tables
  • Insert photos
  • Add graphs to your PDF
  • Add barcodes to your PDF
  • Draw shapes
  • Generate multi-column pages
  • Tutorials on generating specific complex examples

This book will be split into two main parts. The first part will contain pretty thorough coverage of the various parts of ReportLab. The second part will be a short series of chapters on how to create various layouts with ReportLab.

I am also planning a section (or series of appendices) of the book that will introduce you to other Python PDF packages such as PyPDF2 and rst2pdf and how you might use them.

If you would like to be a part of this project, then check out my Kickstarter now!

How to Use wxPython Demo Code Outside the Demo

Every now and then, someone will ask about how they can run the demo code from wxPython’s demo outside of the demo. In other words, they wonder how you can extract the code from the demo and run it in your own. I think I wrote about this very topic quite some time ago on the wxPython wiki, but I thought I should write on the topic here as well.

What to do about the log

The first issue that I always see is that the demo code is riddled with calls to some kind of log. It’s always writing to that log to help the developer see how different events get fired or how different methods get called. This is all well and good, but it makes just copying the code out of the demo difficult. Let’s take the code from the wx.ListBox demo as an example and see if we can make it work outside of the demo. Here is the demo code: Continue reading How to Use wxPython Demo Code Outside the Demo

PyDev of the Week: Christopher Truncer

This week we welcome Christopher Truncer (@ChrisTruncer) as our PyDev of the Week! He is a co-founder and current developer of the Veil-Framework. Christopher basically develops pen-testing utilities in Python. You can see some of what he’s up to over on Github or his website. Let’s take a few moments to get to know him better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

I grew up as a kid loving video games and playing with computers. For some reason I never thought I would have the chance to take that passion and translate it into a career, so I started off going to school for criminal justice. Soon after, I switched to major in Information Technology once I realized I could actually make a career out of playing with computers (to my happy realization). I always wanted to work in computer security, and I was hooked the very first time my roommate let me hack his computer.

After graduating, I started in a Systems Administrator role, and have since moved into computer security where I conduct Penetration Tests and Red Team assessments. I’ve (unfortunately) never had any formal development training. Everything I’ve learned from a development perspective has been self-taught or mentored through others willing to help.

I also love to train in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, I enjoy video games, and really enjoy developing tools which help aid the computer security/hacking work I do. Continue reading PyDev of the Week: Christopher Truncer

PyDev of the Week: Christy Heaton

This week we welcome Christy Heaton (@christytoes) as our PyDev of the Week! Christy is a blogger for the Python Software Foundation. You can see what she’s up to via her Github page or by checking out her website. Let’s take some time to get to know her better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

I studied Anthropology and later Geographic Information Systems (GIS). GIS was the perfect field for me because it brought together my interest in people, technology, and mapping. I now work as a GIS project manager and am a GIS and Python instructor at the University of Washington. In terms of hobbies, I love bringing people together with common interests which is why I help to organize PyLadies Seattle and Maptime Seattle. I’m also a blogger for the Python Software Foundation. Continue reading PyDev of the Week: Christy Heaton

wxPython Recipes Book Contest

I recently had my self-published book, “wxPython Cookbook” picked up by Apress and republished as wxPython Recipes. Since they gave me a few complimentary paperback copies, I have decided to do a little contest.


  • Post a comment telling me why you would want a copy
  • The most clever or heartfelt commenter will be chosen by me

The contest will run starting now until Monday, January 15th @ 11:59 p.m. CST.

The winner will be contacted by yours truly and I will sign the book and ship it wherever you want me to.

For those of you who want to purchase the book, Apress gave me a lame 20% off coupon that you can use for either the eBook or Paperback on their website: wx20

PyDev of the Week: Nicholas Hunt-Walker

This week we welcome Nicholas Hunt-Walker (@nhuntwalker) as our PyDev of the Week! Nicholas studied to be an astrophysicist and then decided to switch to teaching programming and software development. You can find out more about what Nicholas is up to over on his website, Rational Whimsey or possibly see him at a Python conference. He is currently booked to speak at PyCascades later this month and PyCaribbean in February. Let’s take a few moments to get to know him better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

My name is Nick and I’m currently a lead instructor of web and software development at the Seattle-area coding school, Code Fellows. I hail from Elmont, New York where I spent most of my life before I left for grad school in Seattle in 2010. Before leaving NY I obtained a bachelor’s in Physics and Mathematics from the City University of New York at York College and participated in Columbia University’s Bridge to the Ph.D. program. It was during that latter stint that I gained my first real hobby besides video games, the Afro-Brazilian martial art of Capoeira. I’ve been practicing it off and on ever since, and it remains one of my truest loves. I also like stealing things as a rogue in Dungeons and Dragons, bouldering, casual rowing, and a bit of hiking here in the Pacific Northwest. Continue reading PyDev of the Week: Nicholas Hunt-Walker

Top Ten Python Articles of 2017

2017 was a big year when it comes to readership of this blog. It ended up with 1,027,600 sessions, 704,991 users and 1,233,805 page views. These numbers are nearly twice as much as 2015 and a pretty big boost over 2016 as well. As expected, the country with the biggest readership was the USA. India has been my second largest readership base for the past few years with the United Kingdom and Germany taking up 3rd and 4th place.

These are the most popular of this site’s articles for 2017:

None of these articles were published in 2017. In fact, of the articles listed above, only two were from 2016. Everything else was published in 2014 or earlier. The top article is about working with Microsoft Excel. The other popular topics seem to be concurrency related topics, creating PDFs with Python and creating logs.

In 2016 I somehow managed to write two books. I was hoping to get a book done in 2017, but that just didn’t happen. Instead, I ended up letting Apress republish the wxPython Cookbook under their name as the wxPython Recipes book. I do have plans to release another book through Packt Publishing next month, although it’s not really a programming book. However I also plan to write at least one Python related book this year and get it out the door.

Anyway, I am looking forward to seeing what 2018 has to offer. I hope you will join me on the journey this year too. Happy coding!

PyDev of the Week: Brian Ray

This week we welcome Brian Ray as our PyDev of the Week! Brian is the author / speaker for Python From Scratch Life Lessons from Pearson. He is the founders and the former chair of ChiPy, the Chicago Python users group. Let’s take a few moments to get to know Brian better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

While pursuing a Liberal Art education I started consulting in computers. Prior to that, I could be found hacking away on my IBM PC JR at home and on the Apple Macintosh computers donated to Culver Military Academy boarding school in the early 90s. I took that knowledge for profit while enjoying a fruitful career in programming for the past 22 years. As a hobby, I have enjoyed the Arts, Culinary delights, home life in Chicago, and travel.

I have eaten my way across the globe especially in US and Asia. Any given day I may be found lugging my laptop across borders and always seem to find myself back in Chicago for the monthly Chicago Python User Group (ChiPy) meetings. I enjoy stopping in to other Python related meetups like to visit Don Sheu (and PuPPy – Seattle User Group) or to hear Python folks talk around the globe. Continue reading PyDev of the Week: Brian Ray

PyDev of the Week: Lynn Root

This week we welcome Lynn Root (@roguelynn) as our PyDev of the Week! Lynn is an organizer for PyLadies and PyCon 2017. She was doing some of the master of ceremonies duties when I was attending PyCon this year.  She is also a speaker at various Python Conferences including Pycon, EuroPython, and DjangoCon, among others. You can see what she’s up to over on her website. Let’s take some time getting to know her better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

I have a bachelors degree in business, focusing on economics and finance. But I got sick of Excel spreadsheets and learned to code instead.

I work at Spotify in New York as a Site Reliability Engineer, which basically means I either break our entire service, or get paged to fix it when others do. In actuality, an SRE at Spotify means backend development for infrastructure, writing & maintaining services that others use daily. I also evangelize Free and Open Source Software internally and help fellow engineers release their projects.

Work and programming in general is a big part of my life, but outside of that, I dabble in watercolor painting, knitting, and swimming. Continue reading PyDev of the Week: Lynn Root

wxPython Recipes Book Release

I was contacted earlier this year by Apress about republishing my book, wxPython Cookbook, under their branding. I thought it might be fun to see what I could learn from a publisher so I went with them as I have enjoyed several of their books in the past. The biggest change to the book is that I ended up grouping recipes into chapters instead of having each recipe be a stand-alone chapter. I also added a few new recipes to help fill in when some chapters weren’t easily sorted into groups.

Anyway, Apress just released the book in the past couple of days:

You can find the book over on Amazon or on the Apress website. You can also see a preview of the book on Google.

You can get 20% off of the book from Apress by using the following code: wx20. This code is good on the paperback and the eBook versions of the book until June 2018.

The code for the book is hosted on Apress’s Github account. I also host a copy on Github.

Regardless, feel free to check it out. If you already bought a copy of the wxPython Cookbook, then you don’t need to get this one too since it’s basically the same thing with a bit more polish and a handful of new recipes. I have plans for some other books that I will be self-publishing hopefully in 2018, so keep an eye on the blog for news about that!