Book Image

Expert Python Programming - Fourth Edition

By : Michał Jaworski, Tarek Ziadé
Book Image

Expert Python Programming - Fourth Edition

By: Michał Jaworski, Tarek Ziadé

Overview of this book

This new edition of Expert Python Programming provides you with a thorough understanding of the process of building and maintaining Python apps. Complete with best practices, useful tools, and standards implemented by professional Python developers, this fourth edition has been extensively updated. Throughout this book, you’ll get acquainted with the latest Python improvements, syntax elements, and interesting tools to boost your development efficiency. The initial few chapters will allow experienced programmers coming from different languages to transition to the Python ecosystem. You will explore common software design patterns and various programming methodologies, such as event-driven programming, concurrency, and metaprogramming. You will also go through complex code examples and try to solve meaningful problems by bridging Python with C and C++, writing extensions that benefit from the strengths of multiple languages. Finally, you will understand the complete lifetime of any application after it goes live, including packaging and testing automation. By the end of this book, you will have gained actionable Python programming insights that will help you effectively solve challenging problems.
Table of Contents (16 chapters)
14
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15
Index

Interfacing with dynamic libraries without extensions

Thanks to ctypes (a module in the standard library) or cffi (an external package available on PyPI), you can integrate every compiled dynamic/shared library in Python, no matter what language it was written in. And you can do that in pure Python without any compilation step. Those two packages are known as foreign function libraries. They are interesting alternatives to writing your own extensions in C.

Although using foreign function libraries does not require writing C code, it does not mean you don't need to know anything about C to use them effectively. Both ctypes and cffi require from you a reasonable understanding of C and how dynamic libraries work in general. On the other hand, they remove the burden of dealing with Python reference counting and greatly reduce the risk of making painful mistakes. Also, interfacing with C code through ctypes or cffi is more portable than writing and compiling the C extension modules...