Storing Python dictionaries


Question

I'm used to bringing data in and out of Python using .csv files, but there are obvious challenges to this. Any advice on simple ways to store a dictionary (or sets of dictionaries) in a json or pck file? For example:

data = {}
data ['key1'] = "keyinfo"
data ['key2'] = "keyinfo2"

I would like to know both how to save this, and then how to load it back in.

1
153
4/29/2016 8:46:12 AM

Accepted Answer

Pickle save:

try:
    import cPickle as pickle
except ImportError:  # python 3.x
    import pickle

with open('data.p', 'wb') as fp:
    pickle.dump(data, fp, protocol=pickle.HIGHEST_PROTOCOL)

See the pickle module documentation for additional information regarding the protocol argument.

Pickle load:

with open('data.p', 'rb') as fp:
    data = pickle.load(fp)

JSON save:

import json

with open('data.json', 'w') as fp:
    json.dump(data, fp)

Supply extra arguments like sort_keys or indent to get a pretty result. The argument sort_keys will sort the keys alphabetically and indent will indent your data structure with indent=N spaces.

json.dump(data, fp, sort_keys=True, indent=4)

JSON load:

with open('data.json', 'r') as fp:
    data = json.load(fp)
368
1/10/2018 1:28:41 PM

Minimal example, writing directly to a file:

import json
json.dump(data, open(filename, 'wb'))
data = json.load(open(filename))

or safely opening / closing:

import json
with open(filename, 'wb') as outfile:
    json.dump(data, outfile)
with open(filename) as infile:
    data = json.load(infile)

If you want to save it in a string instead of a file:

import json
json_str = json.dumps(data)
data = json.loads(json_str)

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