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Table of contents
1.
Introduction
2.
What is Enumerate in Python?
3.
Python enumerate() Syntax
3.1.
enumerate() in Python Parameters
3.2.
enumerate() in Python Return Value
4.
How Does Enumerate() in Python Work?
5.
Python enumerate() Examples
5.1.
1. Looping Over an Enumerate object
5.2.
Python
5.3.
2. Using enumerate() on a list with startIndex
5.4.
Python
5.5.
3. Enumerating a Tuple
5.6.
Python
5.7.
4. Enumerating a String
5.8.
Python
6.
Advantages of using Python enumerate()
7.
Disadvantages of using Python enumerate()
8.
Frequently Asked Questions
8.1.
What does enumerate() do in Python?
8.2.
Is enumerate 1 or 0 in Python?
8.3.
What is the difference between enumerate and index in Python?
8.4.
How to use enumeration in Python?
9.
Conclusion
Last Updated: Mar 27, 2024
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Enumerate() Function in Python

Author Shubham Das
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Introduction

Hello Ninjas! Do you know about enumerate() function in Python? If not, then you need not to worry. We will help you to clear all your doubts.

enumerate function in python

In this article, we will discuss the Python enumerate() function, its syntax, and use cases. We will discuss how we can use it and implement it to iterate through the elements of any list. 

What is Enumerate in Python?

The Python enumerate() is a function that converts a data collection object into an enumerate object. The Python enumerate() function works faster as compared to the iteration with a loop. It is because the function creates an enumerate object which yields the result one by one and requires less memory. We can use the Python enumerate() function to access any given list or iterable item. This helps us keep track of the index and the element while iterating. We can use Python enumerate() to reduce the compilation time and the memory requirement.

Hurray! We have understood the Python enumerate() function. Now let us learn and understand the syntax of the Python enumerate() function.

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Python enumerate() Syntax

The syntax of the Python enumerate() function is as follows:

enumerate(iterable, start=0)


The Python enumerate() function takes the following two parameters:

  1. iterable - It is a sequence or an iterator which enables iteration. It is the mandatory parameter
     
  2. start - It is used to set the starting of the index. It is optional, i.e., it may or may not be present. zero is the default value

The Python enumerate() function returns an object of the enumerated type.

enumerate() in Python Parameters

enumerate() method takes two parameters that are:

  1. An iterable: This can be a list, tuple, string, or any sequence you want to go through
     
  2. (Optional) Starting number: You can tell it where to start counting the items in the sequence. By default, it starts at 0

enumerate() in Python Return Value

enumerate() returns a pair of two values:

  1. Index: It tells you where you are in the sequence, starting from the number you specified (or 0 by default)
     
  2. Item: It gives you the actual thing (element) from the sequence
     

So, enumerate() helps you walk through a list (or similar) and keeps track of where you are and what you're looking at.

How Does Enumerate() in Python Work?

Below are the steps through which the enumerate() in Python works:

  • Iterating Through the Sequence: When you use enumerate() in a loop, it goes through each item in the sequence one by one, like a regular loop
     
  • Counting as You Go:  enumerate() also keeps count of where we are in the sequence. It starts counting from the number you specify (or 0 by default) and increases by 1 for each item
     
  • Pairs of Index and Item: For every item in the sequence, enumerate() returns two things: the index (the count) and the item itself. These are typically given as pairs, often in tuples.
     

Now let's discuss different examples to better understand the enumerate() in Python.

Python enumerate() Examples

1. Looping Over an Enumerate object

When you use enumerate() in Python, it creates an enumerate object that you can loop over. Here's how it works:

  • Python

Python

coding_courses = ['Python', 'JavaScript', 'Java', 'C++']
for index, course in enumerate(coding_courses):
print(f"Course {index + 1}: {course}")


Output:

Looping enumerate() output

In this example, we're looping through the courses list while using enumerate(). It provides both the index and the course name, allowing us to create formatted output like Course 1: Python.

2. Using enumerate() on a list with startIndex

You can also specify a starting index for enumeration. Here's how:

  • Python

Python

courses = ['Python', 'JavaScript', 'Java', 'C++', 'Golang']

# Using enumerate() with a starting index of 10
for index, course in enumerate(courses, start=10):
print(f"Course {index}: {course}")


Output:

startIndex

In this case, we start counting from 10, so the output would be Course 10: Python, Course 11: JavaScript and so on.

3. Enumerating a Tuple

enumerate() works not only with lists but also with tuples. Here's an example:

  • Python

Python

languages = ('Python', 'JavaScript', 'Java')

# Enumerating a tuple
for index, language in enumerate(languages):
print(f"Language {index + 1}: {language}")


Output:

Enumerating a Tuple

This code enumerates a tuple of programming languages, providing both the index and the language name in the loop.

4. Enumerating a String

You can even use enumerate() on a string to iterate through its characters along with their positions:

  • Python

Python

text = 'Hello'

# Enumerating a string
for index, char in enumerate(text):
print(f"Character {index + 1}: {char}")


Output:

enumerate a string

In this case, it treats the string as a sequence of characters and provides the character index along with the character itself during iteration.

Advantages of using Python enumerate()

Below are the key advantages of using enumerate() in Python:

  • Simplifies iterating through sequences with index tracking
     
  • Enhances code readability and clarity
     
  • Allows for concise and elegant loops
     
  • Offers flexibility in choosing a starting index
     
  • Compatible with various data types

Disadvantages of using Python enumerate()

Below are the key advantages of using enumerate() in Python:

  • Introduces a slight performance overhead
     
  • May increase memory usage for large datasets
     
  • Adds complexity when both index and value are unnecessary
     
  • Initial learning curve for beginners

Frequently Asked Questions

What does enumerate() do in Python?

enumerate() is a Python built-in function that adds a counter to an iterable, returning pairs of elements and their respective indices. It's often used in loops to access both item and index simultaneously.

Is enumerate 1 or 0 in Python?

In Python, enumerate by default starts indexing from 0. You can specify a different starting index if needed, but it's 0 by default.

What is the difference between enumerate and index in Python?

enumerate returns both the index and the element, while index refers to the position of an element in a sequence. enumerate is used for iterating with both index and value, while index is used to find the position of a specific element.

How to use enumeration in Python?

You can use enumerate() by placing it in a loop, like for index, item in enumerate(iterable):, where index represents the index of the item in the iterable, and item is the value of the current element.

Conclusion

In this article, we discussed the Enumerate() Function in Python. We learnt what it is and how we can implement it. We learnt the syntax and the parameters of this function. We hope this blog on the Enumerate() Function in Python was helpful. You can also refer to other similar articles.

Happy Learning Ninja!!

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