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2.5. Indenting Code

Hunter Boots Azure Original Chelsea Wellingtons Waterproof Womens Ankle Rain Python functions have no explicit Waterproof Wellingtons Hunter Ankle Original Azure Rain Womens Boots Chelsea begin or end, and no curly braces to mark where the function code starts and stops. The only delimiter is a colon (:) and the indentation of the code itself.

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Example 2.5. Indenting the buildConnectionString Function


def buildConnectionString(params):
    """Build a connection string from a dictionary of parameters.

    Returns string."""
    return ";".join(["%s=%s" % (k, v) for k, v in params.items()])

Code blocks are defined by their indentation. By "code block", I mean functions, if statements, for loops, Waterproof Rain Hunter Ankle Original Wellingtons Chelsea Womens Azure Boots while loops, and so forth. Indenting starts a block and unindenting ends it. There are no explicit braces, brackets, or keywords. This means that whitespace is significant, and must be consistent. In this example, the function code (including the doc string) is indented four spaces. It doesn't need to be four spaces, it just needs to be consistent. The first line that is not indented is outside the function.

Example 2.6, “if Statements” shows an example of code indentation with Hunter Rain Azure Womens Waterproof Ankle Original Wellingtons Boots Chelsea if statements.

Example 2.6. if Statements

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def fib(n):                   Bootie Chocolat Taupe Women's Blu Leather ZHZwXRq
    print 'n =', n            
    if n > 1:                 Marc Ankle Multi Black Cora Boot Women's Jacobs rHAvxUrSlides Women's Plush On Fur Flower Winter Autumn Soft Furry Cozy Home Grey Shoes Slip Warm Slippers Pearl HrHYFqO
        return n * fib(n - 1)
    else:                     Toes Men Sport Women Sooneeya Green Shoes Hiking Walking Finger Dry Shoes Five Quick ITFfw
        print 'end of the line'
        return 1
This is a function named fib that takes one argument, n. All the code within the function is indented.
High Warm Waterproof JOKIHA Fully Top Shoes Women Fur Men's Slip Boots Dark Blue Anti high Top Snow Winter Outdoor Lined qwSR8wI7A Printing to the screen is very easy in Rain Ankle Womens Wellingtons Waterproof Azure Chelsea Original Boots Hunter Python, just use print. print statements can take any data type, including strings, integers, and other native types like dictionaries and lists that you'll learn about in the next chapter. You can even mix and match to print several things on one line by using a comma-separated list of values. Each value is printed on the same line, separated by spaces (the commas don't print). So when fib is called with Azure Womens Boots Hunter Chelsea Ankle Rain Waterproof Wellingtons Original 5, this will print "n = 5".
Glow Trail Blue Red Duramo Running outdoor Shoe adidas Mineral ATR Shock Sun Women's 1vFwRxq4 if statements are a type of code block. If the if expression evaluates to true, the indented block is executed, otherwise it falls to the else block.
Of course if and elseHiking Mesh Hiker Shoes Women's Black Slip Non Outdoor Sneakers Casual Trail Climbing Running Lightweight EqpCC5Wwf blocks can contain multiple lines, as long as they are all indented the same amount. This else block has two lines of code in it. There is no other special syntax for multi-line code blocks. Just indent and get on with your life.

After some initial protests and several snide analogies to Rain Boots Azure Waterproof Chelsea Hunter Ankle Womens Wellingtons Original Fortran, you will make peace with this and start seeing its benefits. One major benefit is that all Womens Original Ankle Waterproof Azure Wellingtons Rain Chelsea Boots Hunter Python programs look similar, since indentation is a language requirement and not a matter of style. This makes it easier to read and understand other people's Python code.

Python uses carriage returns to separate statements and a colon and indentation to separate code blocks. C++ and Java use semicolons to separate statements and curly braces to separate code blocks.

Further Reading on Code Indentation