# An Introduction To Python Numbers: The Basics Every Programmer Needs To Know

Python numbers are the foundation of any programming language and are essential for any programmer to understand. Python has a wide range of numeric types, including integers, floats, complex numbers, and more, and each type has its own range of operations and behaviours. Mastering the fundamentals of Python numbers is a crucial step in becoming a proficient Python programmer. This article will provide a comprehensive introduction to Python numbers, covering the different types of numbers, their properties, and the operations that can be performed on them. We’ll also discuss how Python handles errors due to out-of-range numbers and how to convert between different number types. By the end of this article, you’ll have a strong understanding of Python numbers and be well on your way to mastering the fundamentals of Python programming.

## What are Python Numbers?#

A number is a basic mathematical concept used as a quantitative description. Typically, numbers can be written as digits, but they can also be represented in other ways, such as algebraic expressions or graphs. In a computer program, numbers are represented by numerical data, also known as numbers. A number can be either a single digit (e.g. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5) or a series of digits (e.g. 1234, 12345, 123456, 1234567, 12345678). The numerical data used in computer programs is stored in the memory of the computer and is usually represented in binary code. Practically, numbers are essential in any programming language. In Python, numbers can be written in a variety of formats, such as integers, decimals and floats.

## Types of Python Numbers#

Python has a wide variety of number types, including integers, decimals, and floating-point numbers, as well as complex numbers and imaginary numbers. Each number type has different properties and is best used for different purposes. In general, integers should be used for counting or where accuracy is not critical, while decimals should be used for precise numbers such as currency or measurements. Floating-point numbers are used for variables that might change between large and small numbers and can be used for both decimals and approximate calculations.

## Properties of Python Numbers#

Precision: The precision of a number is the number of significant digits it contains. For example, the following numbers have different precisions: 1.2345 has a precision of 3, while 0.2345 has a precision of 0. In Python, integers are precise by default, while decimals are precise only if they have a specified precision.

Rounding: Rounding is the process of truncating numbers to a certain precision. For example, when representing a number like 4.49 as a single digit (e.g. 4 or 5), this is known as rounding.

The following numbers have different roundings: 4.49, 4.50, and 4.51. Python numbers use a method called round or nearest-toward-zero rounding, which is the default rounding method used in most programming languages.

Significance: The significance of a number is the number of digits that are not to the right of the decimal point. For example, the number 4.5 has a significance of 1 (the digit before the decimal point), while the number 4.5001 has a significance of 2. In Python, the significance of integers is always 0 and the significance of decimals is always 1.

Precision: The precision of a number is the number of significant digits it contains. For example, the following numbers have different precisions: 1.2345 has a precision of 3, while 0.2345 has a precision of 0. In Python, integers are precise by default, while decimals are precise only if they have a specified precision.

Rounding: Rounding is the process of truncating numbers to a certain precision. For example, when representing a number like 4.49 as a single digit (e.g. 4 or 5), this is known as rounding.

The following numbers have different roundings: 4.49, 4.50, and 4.51. Python numbers use a method called round or nearest-toward-zero rounding, which is the default rounding method used in most programming languages.

Significance: The significance of a number is the number of digits that are not to the right of the decimal point. For example, the number 4.5 has a significance of 1 (the digit before the decimal point), while the number 4.5001 has a significance of 2. In Python, the significance of integers is always 0 and the significance of decimals is always 1.

## Operations with Python Numbers#

Python numerals are general-purpose and can be used for many different operations. This section will discuss some of the more common operations with Python numbers and their expected outcomes.

## Range of Python Numbers#

The range of a number is the number of digits that can be used in a program. Most number types in Python have the same range, but some have different ranges. For example, the range of the Integer number type is -2147483648 to 2147483647, while the range of the Decimal number type is -79228162514264337593543950335 to 79228162514264337593543950335. The range of a number can be accessed using the Python built-in function int(), which returns the number in its shortest form. The range of Decimal numbers can be accessed using the Decimal.MAX_VALUE and Decimal.MIN_VALUE built-ins.

## Handling Errors with Python Numbers#

As with other programming languages, there is a chance that you’ll encounter an error when working with Python numbers due to out-of-range numbers or an attempt to perform an operation that is not possible for the number type. Errors can be caught using the Python try/except statement. When a number is outside the expected range, it is called an out-of-range number error, which can be handled with the OverflowError exception. For example, attempting to add 2147483648 and 0 will result in an OverflowError: Python numbers also might not be able to perform a particular operation, such as trying to find the square root of a negative number. These errors are called invalid operations, and are handled with the TypeError exception. For example, 1/0 will result in a TypeError:

## Conversion Between Number Types#

Conversion between number types in Python is not automatic and requires the programmer to manually convert the number. The following Python functions can be used to convert between number types: int(), float(), and dec(). The int() function will convert a number to its smallest possible integer value, while the dec() function will convert a number to its smallest possible decimal value. The float() function will convert a number to a single-precision floating-point value. The following example converts a Decimal number to an Integer, a Decimal, and a single-precision floating-point value:

## Summary#

In summary, Python numbers are the basic mathematical concepts used as a quantitative description. They are represented by numerical data and are essential for any programmer to understand. Python has a wide range of number types, including integers, decimals, and floating-point numbers, as well as complex numbers and imaginary numbers. Each type has different properties and is best used for different purposes. Practically, numbers are essential in any programming language. In Python, numbers can be written in a variety of formats, such as integers, decimals, and floats. When working with numbers, Python programmers should be aware of their precision, rounding, significance, and range. The programmer will also need to manually convert between number types when desired. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to use Python numbers effectively and efficiently.

Master Your Future with LSET’s Python Course!