An interview with April Speight, author of Visual Studio Code for Python Programmers #Python @Code @vogueandcode

Wiley recently published the book Visual Studio Code for Python Programmers. Adafruit asked author April Speight some questions about herself and the book:

Is this your first book? What do you do, a little about yourself, etc.

My name is April Speight and I’m a Sr. Cloud Advocate at Microsoft. I focus on engaging with XR (extended reality) developers who create apps and experiences in Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and Mixed Reality. Whenever I’m not working in another reality, you can often find me taking part in one of my thousand hobbies. So far, I’ve published two Python related books:

What inspired you to write a book on VSC and Python?

After my first book published, my publisher reached out with an idea for another title. I was told that they wanted to publish a book on Visual Studio Code but from the Python developer’s perspective. Given the code editor’s flexibility when it comes to language, it can be a lot to learn if you’re just starting out with Visual Studio Code. If you already have the Python skill set, then the next step is to familiarize yourself with a code editor and all of it’s pertinent features to make your development workflow as efficient as possible.

Who is your target audience? Who do you think will benefit most from this?

This book was written for folks who are either (a) in need of a code editor or (b) already utilize Visual Studio Code but would like to know all of the features related to programming in Python. I assume that the reader already knows Python. There are also some additional assumptions as it relates to different aspects of programming such as unit tests or working with containers. Although I do provide a bit of a conceptual overview, my focus is more so on how to do “x-thing” using Visual Studio Code features.

Why write a book on VSC and Python when there are other resources available? Why not blog posts or a video series? Or do you plan on doing some videos and more later for the book?

Books tend to provide a comprehensive overview in a single source. Believe it or not, there are a great deal of folks who still prefer to learn from a book rather than scavenge the internet for videos and/or blog posts.

Do I need a particular background to follow along? Do you have any recommendations?

I would suggest that you learn and understand Python at a foundational level before proceeding with this book. I provide the necessary source code for the projects that are written in this book. In comparison to my first book, this book does not spend time on teaching Python.

What’s your favorite chapter?

Chapter 1 – Getting Started is my favorite chapter. I like this one most because it touches upon the different customizations that you can set up in the editor. I really like customizing programs and tools that I often use!

So I’ve finished reading this book, what is the next step?

The next step is to apply what you’ve learned by carrying out a project of your own in Visual Studio Code. Because there’s always something new in the editor, be sure to check out the Visual Studio Code release notes for any recent updates.

Are you planning any additional books in the future?

Currently, I do not have any new books coming down the pipeline. Given that I now work in a different area in tech, if I were to write any more books it would likely be on XR.

Thank you April for your responses!

You can find Visual Studio Code for Python Programmers at bookstores and online such as at Wiley and Amazon.

Also by April: Bite-Size Python: An Introduction to Python Programming

Website: www.vogueandcode.com and Twitter: @vogueandcode


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