Reading … Python for secret agents

A few weeks ago, I received a book (thanks to packtpub.com, a company I am colaborating with for a few months) titled Python for Secret Agents.

Analyze, encrypt, and uncover intelligence data using Python, the essential tool for all aspiring secret agents

The title of the book impress me, and to be a good secret agent, Python can help you more than you think!

The book is written for beginners, those who are starting with data management (of course!!), but as always, it could be better if you have some knowledge of Python. As you can read on this blog, I am using Python for some time, and I’m very happy. I spent some to discover it, but now … that’s almost the only language I’m using … apart from HTML5. I have seen several video tutorials, conferences, … also read some books, …

The book is only 5 chapters, but the first one is where you need to invest more time, specially if you’re new to Python. One of the coolest feature of this book is that if focused on Python 3, and maybe it’s one of the reasons I chose this book for a review, because I am developing with Python 2.7. During the first chapter a beginner can learn basic principles and concepts of Python: from operators with numbers, strings, work with files, … The basement for the next chapters!

To end this chapter you can learn how to recover a password of a zip file by using brute force. The first step is select a dictionary, and the second apply the brute force trying to retrieve the forgotten password. A very cool example!

The second chapter cover Internet issues, and you can learn how to work with HTTP, FTP … and other protocols, using Python. Here you can learn a lot about collections of data, such as list, tuples, set and dictionaries (very important in Python).

If you need to deal with images, the third chapter is for you, where you can learn how to use Pillow (based on PIL, but improved) …

The forth chapter is focused on data extraction, particularly on web scrapping. Here you can learn how to use BeautifulSoup, a library I already use here, for example, for retrieving the prizes of Quiniela (spanish betting game), the scores from Spainish League or how to get the scores from LiveScore. Another examples you can read here is using geolocation and working with geographic data. In my opinion, it’s the most complex chapter of the book, but I think it’s the most interesting!

To end with, last chapter is concentrated on data analysis, aplying statistics, leaving for the end testing, an important aspect of programming everybody hates (me also!).

So, I encaurage you to read this book, mainly because it’s Python 3, and because of the topics and examples of the book. Of course, if you have any background on Python is desirable. And again, thanks to PacktPub for the book!

Have a nice day!