Do you want to play around with Python without the hassles of setting up your system? If yes, then this is the right place to find out the best ways to write, compile, debug or interpret Python online.
The capabilities of an online Python interpreter can range from a basic python shell capable of running simple Python script to a full-fledged cloud based online Python IDE for working on enterprise grade Python projects.
PythonTutor for example is a good option to run your python code online and also to see the code execution visually. Other similar compilers and interpreters include repl.it, sculpt.org, python fiddle and ideone etc.
On the other end of the spectrum are the most advanced cloud based programming environments like Cloud 9, CodeAnywhere, CodeEnvy and Koding etc. Apart from the advantages of being in the cloud, these coding environments provide you all the features of a typical Python IDE like Pydev, PyCharm or VIM editor that you run on local machine.
When you make a quick search on Google with the keywords online python interpreter or online python ide or something similar, you will find out that there are many out there in the wild.
Which one is good for you to hunt Python online?
The answer to above question completely depends on what your requirements are, what you like and what you can afford. You can try out few before narrowing down to one and spending few hours upfront is not such a bad idea.
Over the last few days, I have been busy looking at the various online python interpreters and programming environments, given below are some of the best that do the job well.
I will start off with simple Python interpreter for learning python, for classroom teaching, interviews etc. and then move on to the most advanced cloud based full featured development environments suitable for enterprise grade development.
Also check out – Best Free Python Tutorials
Python Tutor is the creation of Philip Guo, assistant professor at Rochester University. It supports online Python as well as many other languages. The amazing thing about this tool is the visual representation of code execution, line by line. You have three sections on screen – the code editor, the visual execution window and the program output.
PythoTutor is a perfect tool for learning python for beginners by visualizing the code execution. Another great feature is the option to start a shared session. You can start editing code and invite others to join the session along with a chat window for instant communication.
I specifically find shared session features as a great tool for classroom teaching and group learning, whether sitting together or in your respective dens.
You can read more about Python Tutor at its official website here at – pythontutor.com.
Repl.it provides online interactive programming environment for many languages including Python 3. Repl.it is developed and maintained by an ambitious team that includes Amjad Masad, Haya Odeh and Faris Masad. It provides Python code editor, some ready to use examples and fully featured terminal emulator. You can share your work across and save the sessions on repl.it.
Going beyond just an online interpreter, Repl.it has some great features that are perfect for classroom tests and interviews etc. One can use Repl.it API to and start using the interpreter capabilities in any app; it can be online programming contest, hackathon or a classroom evaluation.
Many universities, teachers and interviewers use repl.it to evaluate code online, including Carnegie Mellon University, one interview, Trinket and Flatiron school.
You can read more about Repl.it at its official website here at – repl.it.
Skulpt is used heavily in the interactive python learning courses and textbooks. Skulpt was created by Scott Graham and is well maintained by a very creative community of contributors.
You can read more about Skulpt here at – skulpt.org.
CodeSkulptor is another option to compile python online as well as see the code execution visually. It is built using sculpt.org’s browser based python interpreter as well as Python tutor’s visualization code.
CodeSkulptor is a handy tool to learn python online in the browser as well checking out the visual code execution. In essence, CodeSkulptor brings best of the two worlds together.
Code sculptor is the creation of Scott Rixner, a well-respected professor at Rice University. You can read more about CodeSkulptor here at – codeskulptor.org.
TutorialsPoint hosts some of the best programming tutorials online including Python tutorials. The interesting part is the online Python compiler that accompanies Python tutorials to let you execute example code right there, in the browser.
Tutorials point is much more than just a Python shell to execute python scripts. It provides option to create and manage projects, more or less the way a code editor (simple one though) does.
You can Check out tutorialsPoint online Python Editor here at – tutorialspoint.com/execute_python_online.
Ideone.com is another great online python compiler and debugging tool for learning python. Some of the key features include option to use syntax highlighting, source code downloading option, option to make code available publically or keeping it private, and it is free to use. It also provides details around time taken for code execution, memory consumption, error messages and complier version etc.
Ideone folks have a proprietary Sphere Engine that is used to compile code of multiple programming languages online. While Ideone is free, Sphere engine is available separately as well for commercial use and its applicability areas include trainings, education, hackathons, programming contest and coding interviews etc. One can use the Sphere Engine capabilities via the provided API.
If you need a simple online python compiler in Chinese user interface, you can try Pythonfiddle.
You can read more about Ideone here at – ideone.com.
CodeEnvy is the big daddy in the world of online development environments. It is a commercial product and the customer base includes big names like SAP, Intuit, redhat and YouthDigital.
Though it is commercial for enterprise development, it does provide a free community edition as well and the capabilities of free tier are way more than any other python online editor or shell.
Codenby runs on top of Eclipse Che and can be customized further with additional Che plugins. Eclipse Che is open source project and is maintained by community.
CodeEnvy competes with the likes of Koding and Cloud 9 in the commercial space.
You can read more about CodeEnvy here at – codenvy.com.
Sourceliar is a complete integrated development environment for multiple languages which gives you a fully functional online Python IDE as well. Sourceliar is feature rich but a commercial product, you get free access for limited period, for evaluation, post which you need to purchase it, if you like.
Some of the key features of Sourcliar include git and hg integration, auto save, pip package manager, Linux terminal, auto complete, drag and drop files from desktop to online environment, themeable editor, code folding, syntax checking etc.
Sourceliar provides specific support for Django where you can run commands like syncdb and runserver from the online interface, get syntax highlighting for Django templates, integration with command palette etc. You also get public URL to showcase your Django project to others while still in WIP.
You can read more about Sourceliar here at – sourcelair.com.
9. Cloud 9
Cloud 9 is the most used online programming environment till date and probably doesn’t need much of an introduction. Cloud 9 is different class altogether and the rest in the business can only imagine to compete this giant at this hour. It is a successful commercial product and is heavily used by small, medium and large scale organizations.
Cloud9 also has a free version available for individual developers and offers one free public workspace, one free private workspace and community support.
You can read more about Cloud9 here at – cloud9.
PythonAnywhere is another web based code editor that you take wherever you go. Office, home or school, it runs on any computer (iPad, PC, MAC or Chromebook).
The free plan offers a fully configured python environment to develop or host any website or python code directly from the browser. It offers additional features as well at a nominal monthly subscription.
You can read more about PythonAnywhere at its official website – pythonanywhere.com.
Python is raging at the moment and ruling the world of computer science students, teachers and data scientists alike. Universities have chosen python has primary language for teaching fundamentals of programming to students. Data scientists are since long using Python for developing complex algorithms and using the same in big data and machine learning applications.
Everyone needs to get on boarded quickly to try hands in the world of programming, the quick and easy way to do so is using an online compiler, interpreter or debugging tool. Python online tools are perfect way to get started with the development without the hassles of setting up the local machines or servers.
The days of spending time on local machines are gone and everyone is moving towards online tools for development. The online Python editors, compilers, interpreters, debugging tools and IDEs’ mentioned in this article are best in their area of application and you can start off with any of on these per your needs. Do share your experience with Python online, via comments. Cheers!