Python operators are symbols that we use to run operations upon values and variables.
We can divide operators based on the kind of operation they perform:
- assignment operator
- arithmetic operators
- comparison operators
- logical operators
- bitwise operators
plus some interesting ones like
The assignment operator is used to assign a value to a variable:
age = 8
Or to assign a variable value to another variable:
age = 8 anotherVariable = age
Since Python 3.8, the
:= walrus operator is used to assign a value to a variable as part of another operation. For example inside an
if or in the conditional part of a loop. More on that later.
Python has a number of arithmetic operators:
** (exponentiation) and
// (floor division):
1 + 1 #2 2 - 1 #1 2 * 2 #4 4 / 2 #2 4 % 3 #1 4 ** 2 #16 4 // 2 #2
Note that you don’t need a space between the operands, but it’s good for readability.
- also works as a unary minus operator:
+ is also used to concatenate String values:
"Roger" + " is a good dog" #Roger is a good dog
We can combine the assignment operator with arithmetic operators:
- ..and so on
age = 8 age += 1 # age is now 9
Python defines a few comparison operators:
You can use those operators to get a boolean value (
False) depending on the result:
a = 1 b = 2 a == b #False a != b #True a > b #False a <= b #True
Python gives us the following boolean operators:
When working with
False attributes, those work like logical AND, OR and NOT, and are often used in the
if conditional expression evaluation:
condition1 = True condition2 = False not condition1 #False condition1 and condition2 #False condition1 or condition2 #True
Otherwise, pay attention to a possible source of confusion.
or used in an expression returns the value of the first operand that is not a falsy value (
..). Otherwise it returns the last operand.
print(0 or 1) ## 1 print(False or 'hey') ## 'hey' print('hi' or 'hey') ## 'hi' print( or False) ## 'False' print(False or ) ## ''
The Python docs describe it as
if x is false, then y, else x.
and only evaluates the second argument if the first one is true. So if the first argument is falsy (
..), it returns that argument. Otherwise it evaluates the second argument:
print(0 and 1) ## 0 print(1 and 0) ## 0 print(False and 'hey') ## False print('hi' and 'hey') ## 'hey' print( and False ) ##  print(False and  ) ## False
The Python docs describe it as
if x is false, then x, else y.
Some operators are used to work on bits and binary numbers:
&performs binary AND
|performs binary OR
^performs a binary XOR operation
~performs a binary NOT operation
<<shift left operation
>>shift right operation
Bitwise operators are rarely used, only in very specific situations, but they are worth mentioning.
is is called the identity operator. It is used to compare two objects and returns true if both are the same object. More on objects later.
in is called the membership operator. Is used to tell if a value is contained in a list, or another sequence. More on lists and other sequences later.
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