Decorators in Python: Why and How to Use Them and Write Your Own

Decorators in Python: Why and How to Use Them and Write Your Own

Level up your ability to follow SOLID principles with an intermediate-level Python technique. When you’re just getting started with Python, essentially everything you’re learning is foundational. There is not a lot of time or motivation to stop and ask when will I use this?

When you’re just getting started with Python, essentially everything you’re learning is foundational. There is not a lot of time or motivation to stop and ask when will I use this? when you’re learning about basic things like data types, conditionals, loops, and functions…because the answer is _as a Python programmer, you’ll use all of these things all the time! _Whether you are a data scientist building machine learning models, or a software developer building the backend of a website, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to make any progress at all if you don’t know the basics.

But once you understand the essential foundations of Python, it can be challenging to identify which new tools and concepts will be helpful — and possibly even necessary—in your advancement, compared to those that might just be a waste of your time.

In this story, I’ll walk you through:

  1. Review of SOLID software development principles
  2. Examples of “tacked-on” scenarios that are challenging to implement while following the SOLID principles
  3. How a decorator approach overcomes this challenge
  4. Using Python decorators written by others
  5. Writing your own decorators in Python

The code in this blog post can also be found in this Google Colaboratory notebook:

OLID principles

If you’re planning on contributing to “real” software projects, not just one-off scripts or personal projects, it’s a good idea to be familiar with the SOLID principles.

Green circular logo with a check mark and the words “clean code”

Uncle Bob Consulting, LLC

The SOLID principles were originally created by Robert C. Martin, AKA “Uncle Bob” of Uncle Bob Consulting. To quote from his website:

The principles are mental cubby-holes. They give a name to a concept so that you can talk and reason about that concept. They provide a place to hang the feelings we have about good and bad code. They attempt to categorize those feelings into concrete advice.

clean-code python programming coding software-development

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