Skip to main content

C'est la Z

Using Emacs 65 - Live Python

The other day I stumbled upon Emacs's Live Coding plugin. It takes interactive coding up to the next level.

Normally, when you code Python, if you're working in a REPL, every time you hit <Enter> the line you just typed is evaluated. When you're working ina source file, you're just editing until you send the file into a Python interpreter.

With this module, your file is continually evaluated as you type and it shows you the results in a side window.

If you type in:

a = 20
b = 30
c = a + b
print(c+c)

The live python window will display something like:

a = 20
b = 30
c = 50
print(100)

If you change one of the variables, everything updates.

It gets even cooler when you add loops, functions, and even recursion.

There's also support for unit testing.

It works, to varying degrees with Emacs, PyCharmm, Sublime Text and there's even a browser version. Emacs handles the basics and it seems that the Sublime Text version adds support for some graphing. PyCharm has that plus turtle graphics.

While this is very cool, to be honest, I don't know how useful this is going to be but I'm very excited to play with it in the Fall when I'll be teaching Python again.

Check out this short video to see it in action:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/bYy90EUAh98" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe>

comments powered by Disqus