re: Secret Message VIEW POST

    def give_me_word(text):
        for i in text:
            if i in ans:

        rev_dict = dict((v,k) for k,v in ans.iteritems())

        for i in sorted_list:
            if(i>=comparison and rev_dict[i]!='_'):
            elif rev_dict[i]=='_':

        return the_text


    print give_me_word(text)

Not fully optimized script to do the same in python


Python is on my list of things to learn soon and can't help but remark how much it "looks" like Ruby without knowing much about it yet.


"...without knowing much about it yet." This is great about python. Nice challenge this one. :-)


Nice! Thanks for sharing. :) Have you seen the built-in Counter class? This seems like a perfect use-case for it.

from collections import Counter

blob = "..."
letters = "abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz_"

def message(letters, blob):
    hist = Counter(blob)    # Counter takes any iterable and makes
                            # a histogram of its items!

    sorted_letters = ''.join(x[0] for x in hist.most_common())
    return sorted_letters.split('_')[0]

print(message(letters, blob))

I wondered if I could do better performance-wise, based on knowledge of the problem that the more general built-in classes couldn't take advantage of. Ended up with this:

import string


def decode(msg):
    # Testing suggests this is a little faster than using defaultdict
    charCountHash = {}.fromkeys(string.ascii_lowercase,0)
    charCountHash['_'] = 0

    for ch in msg:
        charCountHash[ch] += 1

    c = charCountHash['_']
    resultHash = {charCountHash[k]: k for k in charCountHash.keys() \
        if charCountHash[k] > c }

    return ''.join( [ resultHash[index] for index in \
        sorted(resultHash.keys(), reverse=True) ] )


Testing both implementations a few times suggests this way is faster, but only 1% or so.

Might try this in go, just for the practice...

Nice! I haven't used fromkeys before. That's a nice alternative to defaultdict (and you don't have to import anything!) if you already know the keys you need.


Bonus! On my machine, this version is even 5 times faster than the best Ruby version!

cat test.py | python -m timeit
100000000 loops, best of 3: 0.00844 usec per loop

This is great. Will use counter effectively. Thanks for showing me counter(). :-)

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