open function to access a file.
>>> infile = open("foo.txt", "r")
open takes two arguments: first, the name of the file; second, the “mode” we’re opening the file in.
"r" means read-only. We’ll talk about the other possible modes later.
open returns an object that represents the file we gave it. We can use this object to read the contents
of the file.
>>> data = infile.read()
read will return the contents of the file as a string. Using read to store
the contents of a file in the
data variable is like using copy-and-paste to
store the contents of a website inside of your text editor.
When we’re done reading the file, we need to close it. This will tell the operating system that we no longer need access to the file.
If you create a file called
foo.txt with the contents,
hello there foo bar
the following code will print the contents:
>>> infile = open("foo.txt", "r") >>> data = infile.read() >>> infile.close() >>> print(data) hello there foo bar
It’s actually better to open a file using
>>> with open("foo.txt", "r") as infile: >>> data = infile.read() >>> print(data) hello there foo bar
with will automatically close the file for you. We haven’t covered
yet, so you can wait to use it if you like.