requests: Download file if it doesn’t exist

Problem:

You want to download a URL to a file using the requests python library, but you want to skip the download if it doesn’t exist

Solution:

Use the following functions:

import requests
import os.path

def download_file(filename, url):
    """
    Download an URL to a file
    """
    with open(filename, 'wb') as fout:
        response = requests.get(url, stream=True)
        response.raise_for_status()
        # Write response data to file
        for block in response.iter_content(4096):
            fout.write(block)

def download_if_not_exists(filename, url):
    """
    Download a URL to a file if the file
    does not exist already.

    Returns
    -------
    True if the file was downloaded,
    False if it already existed
    """
    if not os.path.exists(filename):
        download_file(filename, url)
        return True
    return False

 

Removing spans/divs with style attributes from HTML

Occasionally I have to clean up some HTML code – mostly because parts of it were pasted into a CMS like WordPress from rich text editor like Word.

I’ve noticed that the formatting I want to remove is mostly based on span and div elements with a style attribute. Therefore, I’ve written a simple Python script based on BeautifulSoup4 which will replace certain tags with their contents if they have a style attribute. While in some cases some other formatting might be destroyed by such a script, it is very useful for some recurring usecases.

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Upload multiple files to the tornado webserver

The following html code can be used to create an html form that allows uploading multiple files at once:

<form enctype="multipart/form-data" method="POST" action="upload.py">
  <table style="width: 100%">
    <tr>
      <td>Choose the files to upload:</td>
      <td style="text-align: right"><input type="file" multiple="" id="files" name="files"></td>
    </tr>
    <tr>
      <td><input id="fileUploadButton" type="submit" value="Upload &gt;&gt;"></td>
      <td></td>
    </tr>
  </table>
</form>

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Normalizing electronics engineering value notations using Python

In electronics engineering there is a wide variety of notations for values that need to be recognized by intuitive user interfaces. Examples include:

  • 1fA
  • 0.1A
  • 0.00001
  • 1e-6
  • 4,5nA
  • 4,500.123 A
  • 4A5
  • 4k0 A

The wide variety of options, including thousands separators, comma-as-decimal-separator and suffix-as-decimal-separator, optional whitespace and scientific notations makes it difficult to normalize values without using specialized libraries. Mehr lesen

Engineering for the super-lazy: Solving equations without activating your brain

Preface

In electronics engineering, from time to time you have to use standard formulas to characterize your circuits. To what extent you need to calculate all parameters most often depends on the requirement.

For example, consider the formula for the -3dB cutoff frequency of a 1st order RC lowpass filter:

f_c=\frac{1}{2\pi RC}

Although this equation is fairly simple and most people won’t have any problem solving it for any particular variable in a few seconds, it can serve as a basic example on how to solve an equation symbolically.

One of the easiest ways of performing this task is to use SymPy, a Python library for symbolic mathematics.

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