def is_letter(character): return character in 'abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyzABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ'
I noticed this function would loop from a-Z so we should speed that up using a set!
First is it slow?
In : %timeit is_letter(';') 10000000 loops, best of 3: 155 ns per loop
I guess not it took 1 second to do ~10M on its worst case input
But we should be able to speed it up using a set (one hash lookup rather than looking at all 52 things)
def is_letter(character): return character in set('abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyzABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ')
In : %timeit is_letter(';') 100000 loops, best of 3: 2.29 µs per loop
Okay so thats ~20x slower because it constructs a set on every loop.
lets fix that
letters = set('abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyzABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ') def is_letter(character): return character in letters
In : %timeit is_letter(';') 10000000 loops, best of 3: 141 ns per loop
So thats roughly 10% faster!
It can be easy to trip up trying to optimize code.
Its also easy to achieve underwhelming results.
Writing hard to detect bugs or slowing things down are a possibility, be sure to profile things on similar inputs to what you expect and test your code!
note: you can just use
character.isalpha() it has similar performance