In this article, we will highlight how to fix syntax errors in python but firstly it’s important to know what are syntax errors?
Syntax errors are defined as violations of rules and regulations to form a layout of a certain logic. Syntax of tools are the structures and the building blocks to program any software. Errors in the syntax are the most common type of occurring errors in any programming language, especially if one is not familiar with it. Reserved keywords, built-in functions, spaces, punctuations, and other semantics required, to use python’s tools needs to be strictly written as they are advised to. If any violations in the syntax and your program will not compile.
When you write your code, the interpreter compiles and converts the code into a format that can be understood by your machine. The code cannot be construed and parsed if there are any invalid syntax errors.
Syntax errors are detected while the program is being compiled, once any error is found, it will prevent the code from executing. Usually, the errors are self-explanatory and docent needs any special attention to fix them. While some errors are not as corporative. The good thing about syntax errors is that compiler points out to where the problem might be.
Let’s look at some most common causes of syntax errors.
- Misspelled reserved keywords
- Missing required spaces
- Missing quotes
- Misuse of block statements (if-else, loops)
- Missing assignment operator (=)
- Invalid variables declaration
- Invalid function calling or defining
We are mentioning strategies to fix syntax errors in python below:
Misspelled reserved words
The compiler threw an error as “prin not defined”. It’s not defined as a user-defined or built-in keyword, therefore it confuses the compiler to where this word lies.
Missing required spaces
Unlike other programming languages, python has the requirement for an indented block. That is why many programmers have trouble wrapping this concept in the early stages.
Most languages might’ve executed this code (ignoring the terminators), but not python. The print statement in line 3 should have a space of a tab.
When missing quotes in a string, the compiler confuses the purpose of the string and doesn’t identify it. Note how the error is “name hi not defined”, even though it’s supposed to be a string, not a variable. The compiler mistook it as a variable not defined and nowhere guessed the possibility of a string
Notice how the error changed to the literal error when a quote is added. The compiler recognized it as a string and END OF LINE error is thrown.
Misuse of block statements ( if-else, loops)
This is similar to missing spaces in addition to the missing semicolon (:). Python has another rule to use a (:) while ending block statements like loops, if-else.
The error is “invalid syntax”. Not very descriptive, that is why an if-else colon (:) is required to fix this bug. It’s the same with while blocks.
Missing assignment operator (=)
Notice that the compiler is not throwing an error to indicate that the assignment
operator is being misused. But it’s trying to compare the variable game to the string “me”, finding undefined variable.
Invalid variables declaration
There are many ways to violate the variable naming convention. You cannot use special characters to expect underscore (_), or use a number at the beginning variable and many others.
Here is another invalid way to declare a variable.
Invalid function calling or defining
Like any other block statement, function declaration has also a syntax. Proper spaces and use of the colon (:) are necessary. Messing up with the syntax will prevent from execution. The following example shows an executable function without errors.
Function calling has to have the required cautions to prevent bugs. The following error is caused by the argument provided which is not defined in the declaration.
There are many syntax errors in python that are frustrating. Many errors are obvious and easily eliminated while some errors are confusing. In this article, many common syntax errors were discussed with explanations to the cause of their occurrence.