All posts by Mike

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!

PyDev of the Week: Damián Avila

This week we welcome Damián Avila as our PyDev of the Week! Damián works for Anaconda, an open source distribution of Python and R with a heavy focus on data science. He is also the author of RISE, a Jupyter/IPython Slideshow Extension. You can get a feel for what Damián is up to over on Github or by checking out his website. Let’s spend some time getting to know our fellow Pythonista better!

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


Nowadays, I am a Software Developer and team Leader at Anaconda, Inc. In my previous life, I graduated as Biochemist from the U.N.L.P, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

In fact, I currently live in Córdoba, Argentina with my partner Daniela and my cat, Bituinas, but every other week I travel to Buenos Aires (700 km away) where my 5 years old son, Facundo, lives with his mother and I spend some days with him.

My main focus of interests are Data Science, Finance, Data Visualization and the Jupyter/IPython ecosystem. In the Open Source area, I have made meaningful contributions to several projects, and now I am a core developer of popular projects, such as Jupyter, Nikola and Bokeh.

I have also started my own projects being RISE (a “live” slideshow machinery for the Jupyter/IPython notebook) the most popular one.

I have presented talks, tutorials and posters in several national and international conferences and I have also written and taught tutorials about the Scientific Python ecosystem. I am part of Python Argentina, Scientific Python Argentina and PyData Argentina communities and I am also a Jupyter Steering Council Member.

Fun fact, I have practiced Aikido for several years and I am currently trying to come back to the regular practice. Continue reading PyDev of the Week: Damián Avila

Flask 101: Filtering Searches and Deleting Data

Last time we got our Flask based music database application partially functional. It could now add data to the database, edit said data and also display everything in the database. But we didn’t cover how to filter the data by using the user’s filter choice (Artist, Album name or publisher name) and search string. We also didn’t cover how to delete items from the database. That is the two-fold goal of this article.

Filtering Search Results

Filtering search results using SQLAlchemy (via Flask-SQLAlchemy) is actually quite easy. All you need to do is create some very simple query objects. Open up the file that we were editing last time and replace the search_results() function with the following version of the code: Continue reading Flask 101: Filtering Searches and Deleting Data

Flask 101: Adding, Editing and Displaying Data

Last time we learned how to add a search form to our music database application. Of course, we still haven’t added any data to our database, so the search form doesn’t actually do much of anything except tell us that it didn’t find anything. In this tutorial we will learn how to actually add data, display search results and edit entries in the database.

Let’s get started!

Adding Data to the Database

Let’s start by coding up our new album form. Open up the “” file we created in the last tutorial and add the following class:

class AlbumForm(Form):
    media_types = [('Digital', 'Digital'),
                   ('CD', 'CD'),
                   ('Cassette Tape', 'Cassette Tape')
    artist = StringField('Artist')
    title = StringField('Title')
    release_date = StringField('Release Date')
    publisher = StringField('Publisher')
    media_type = SelectField('Media', choices=media_types)

This defines all the fields we need to create a new Album. Now we need to open “” and add a function to handle what happens when we want to create the new album. Continue reading Flask 101: Adding, Editing and Displaying Data