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Question: Assume that two variables, varA and varB, are assigned values, either numbers or strings. Write a piece of Python code that prints out one of the following messages: "string involved" if either varA or varB are strings "bigger" if varA is larger than varB "equal" if varA is equal to varB "smaller" if varA is smaller than varB Answer I tried: if (type(varA) or type(varB))=='str': print ("string involved") else: if varA>varB: print("bigger") if varA=varB: print("equal") if varA

MIT 6.00 Intro Computer Science (OCW)
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In varA=varB you should give in == and not =..a single =is meant for assigning only
try out this syntax if type(varA) == str or type(varB) == str:
isinstance(thing, type) is the recommended way to check for an objects type http://docs.python.org/library/functions.html#type

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indeed, but this has not been "taught" by the time we get to this particular exercise!
Reposting from another question created by the same user asking the same thing... The problems comes from this statement: if varA=varB: You cannot use the = sign to compare variables, the = sign in Python (and any other languages) is used to assign values. Use == for comparison, and === for type-sensitive comparison. Also, the statement if (type(varA) or type(varB))=='str': is wrong. The or operator is used for logic, so (type(varA) or type(varB)) will return True (because type(varA/B) will return either str or int) and the whole statement will return to False (because True != "str"). There are 2 ways to do this, one is: if "str" in [type(varA), type(varB)]. This statement creates a temporary list and checks if either of them is a string. Another way to do this is: if type(varA) == "str" or type(varB) == "str". This is the correct way of showing the logic, but less elegant in my opinion.
i don't think the Pythom documentation is a restricted resource. if you can read and have the inclination, anything in the Python documentation should be fair game

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