How is Anaconda related to Python?

I am a beginner and I want to learn computer programming. So, for now, I have started learning Python by myself with some knowledge about programming in C and Fortran.

Now, I have installed Python version 3.6.0 and I have struggled finding a suitable text for learning Python in this version. Even the online lecture series ask for versions 2.7 and 2.5 .

Now that I have got a book which, however, makes codes in version 2 and tries to make it as close as possible in version 3 (according to the author); the author recommends "downloading Anaconda for Windows" for installing Python.

So, my question is: What is this 'Anaconda'? I saw that it was some open data science platform. What does it mean? Is it some editor or something like Pycharm, IDLE or something?

Also, I downloaded my Python (the one that I am using right now) for Windows from and I didn't need to install any "open data science platform". So what is this happening?

Please explain in easy language. I don't have too much knowledge about these.

Anaconda is a python and R distribution. It aims to provide everything you need (python wise) for data science "out of the box".

It includes:

  • The core python language
  • 100+ python "packages" (libraries)
  • Spyder (IDE/editor - like pycharm) and Jupyter
  • conda, Anaconda's own package manager, used for updating Anaconda and packages

Your course may have recommended it as it comes with these extras but if you don't need them and are getting on fine with vanilla python that's OK too.

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