Section 2
Coding Environment Setup
6. Environment setup - section overview
01:31 (Preview)
7. Downloading Python and Visual Studio Code
8. Python environments
9. Welcome to your new home - VS Code
10. Getting to know Jupyter Notebooks
Section 3
Python 101 - The (very) Basics
11. Python basics - section overview
02:03 (Preview)
12. Variables and Python data types
13. Functions in Python
14. Loops in Python
15. Control flow
16. Solution walkthrough
17. Basic object-oriented programming concepts
2. Our approach to learning Python
Wait...this isn't Machine Learning

As you complete more and more courses in digiLab Academy, you’ll come across different tutors. We’re I diverse bunch here at digiLab. But the one thing we have in common is that none of us have any formal training in Python! We’ve all just picked it up during the course of our studies or while working on some project.

Learn by doing

The point is that you can become very proficient very quickly by just muddling your way through a problem or using the language to accomplish a goal. It can be slow and painful at the start, but the more you use the language, the easier it gets, and the faster you can work.

Now, there as few things in this world duller than watching pure programming tutorials. In this course, I’ll try and keep this to a minimum. I don’t want to teach you Python by diving straight into machine learning right away. But I also don’t want to bore you to tears watching endless toy examples! So I’ll try and spend just enough time talking about Python fundamentals to take the edge off the machine learning material later on.

We all make mistakes

The other thing that the digiLab team have in common is that we prefer, if at all possible, to look like we know what we’re doing! So, when it comes to recording our Python lessons, we like things to run smoothly with minimal errors along the way.

But looks can be deceiving! By the time we get to producing a finished screen recording, we’ve generally worked our way through most of the bugs in our code, and it will probably look pretty seamless...few, if any error messages, no Googling error messages, no pleading to ChatGPT to help us find the bugs in our code.

Just because you don’t see it, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen! So, why am I giving the game away and telling you this? Because when you start programming, you’re likely to be frustrated by error messages, stumped by bugs you can’t find, and constantly resorting to Google to search for things you think you should know.

This is all normal and inner peace shall descend upon you once you realise this! Every developer spends time Googling error messages and searching for code snippets they’ve used dozens of times already. At digiLab, we just cut all of this out of our lessons because it doesn’t make for a very engaging learning experience!

So, when you sit down to write your own code, independently of tutorial or lesson and things don’t go as smoothly as in the video - rest assured we’ve hit almost all of the same problems; we’ve just edited them out for brevity (and maybe a little ego)!

A final thought on this is that generally, when it comes to coding, the only difference between you and an experienced programmer, your tutor say, is that they’ve likely gotten quicker at navigating to the right solution on Google…or they’re on very good terms with their new friend ChatGPT!

Next Lesson
3. General tips for success