After two years of writing course notes, creating exercises, finding solutions to the exercises and developing instructor material, John Zelle the professor of computer science, finished his book “Python Programming: An Introduction to Computer Science.” His book is being used at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as an alternative to Java for their introductory courses. The computer science professor’s book is being used in more than 20 schools in America, including MIT.
John Zelle is doing a great work by using Python programming for the computer science departments in colleges. He inspired professors at other colleges to write books on Python. Luther college used Zelle’s book for a year and one of their professors published his own version of Python.
John Zelle says, “I actually wrote the materials out of necessity, I wanted to be teaching this curriculum and there weren’t any books out there. I thought, well I could do a service for the field and try to promote Python by putting the book out there where other people could use it.”
Wartburg started using Python in May 1999 as an alternative to other programming languages. Wartburg was also one of the first colleges to use Python at that time as a central part of the curriculum.
According to John Zelle, “languages like Java and C++ were unnecessarily complex for the kind of programming the computer science department wanted to do for beginner-level classes. Something in Java that might take 100 lines to do, I can do in 20-30 lines in Python. Because it takes a lot less writing, it means we can do more.