Appendix D. Install Python 3

By the time Python 3 is preinstalled on every machine, toasters will be replaced by 3-D printers that crank out daily doughnuts with sprinkles. Windows doesn’t have Python at all, and OS X, Linux, and Unix tend to have old versions. Until they catch up, you’ll probably need to install Python 3 yourself.

The following sections describe how to carry out these tasks:

  • Find out what version of Python you have on your computer, if any

  • Install the standard distribution of Python 3, if you don’t have it

  • Install the Anaconda distribution of scientific Python modules

  • Install pip and virtualenv, if you can’t modify your system

  • Install conda as an alternative to pip

Most of the examples in this book were written and tested with Python 3.3, the most recent stable version at the time of writing. Some used 3.4, which was released during the editing process. The What’s New in Python page presents what was added in each version. There are many sources of Python and many ways to install a new version. In this appendix, I’ll describe two of these ways:

  • If you just want the standard interpreter and libraries, I recommend going to the official language site.

  • If you would like Python together with the standard library, and the great scientific libraries described in Appendix C, use Anaconda.

Install Standard Python

Go to the Python download page with your web browser. It tries to guess your operating system and present the appropriate choices, but if ...

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