coroutine - python yield and return in same function - What does the “yield” keyword do?

python yield expression / python / iterator / generator / yield

What is the use of the yield keyword in Python, and what does it do?

For example, I'm trying to understand this code1:

def _get_child_candidates(self, distance, min_dist, max_dist):
    if self._leftchild and distance - max_dist < self._median:
        yield self._leftchild
    if self._rightchild and distance + max_dist >= self._median:
        yield self._rightchild  

And this is the caller:

result, candidates = [], [self]
while candidates:
    node = candidates.pop()
    distance = node._get_dist(obj)
    if distance <= max_dist and distance >= min_dist:
        result.extend(node._values)
    candidates.extend(node._get_child_candidates(distance, min_dist, max_dist))
return result

iliketocode



Answer #1
>>> def func():
...     yield 'I am'
...     yield 'a generator!'
... 
>>> type(func)                 # A function with yield is still a function
<type 'function'>
>>> gen = func()
>>> type(gen)                  # but it returns a generator
<type 'generator'>
>>> hasattr(gen, '__iter__')   # that's an iterable
True
>>> hasattr(gen, 'next')       # and with .next (.__next__ in Python 3)
True                           # implements the iterator protocol.

The generator type is a sub-type of iterator:

>>> import collections, types
>>> issubclass(types.GeneratorType, collections.Iterator)
True

And if necessary, we can type-check like this:

>>> isinstance(gen, types.GeneratorType)
True
>>> isinstance(gen, collections.Iterator)
True
>>> list(gen)
['I am', 'a generator!']
>>> list(gen)
[]

You'll have to make another if you want to use its functionality again (see footnote 2):

>>> list(func())
['I am', 'a generator!']

One can yield data programmatically, for example:

def func(an_iterable):
    for item in an_iterable:
        yield item
def func(an_iterable):
    yield from an_iterable
def bank_account(deposited, interest_rate):
    while True:
        calculated_interest = interest_rate * deposited 
        received = yield calculated_interest
        if received:
            deposited += received


>>> my_account = bank_account(1000, .05)
>>> first_year_interest = next(my_account)
>>> first_year_interest
50.0
>>> next_year_interest = my_account.send(first_year_interest + 1000)
>>> next_year_interest
102.5

def money_manager(expected_rate):
    # must receive deposited value from .send():
    under_management = yield                   # yield None to start.
    while True:
        try:
            additional_investment = yield expected_rate * under_management 
            if additional_investment:
                under_management += additional_investment
        except GeneratorExit:
            '''TODO: write function to send unclaimed funds to state'''
            raise
        finally:
            '''TODO: write function to mail tax info to client'''
        

def investment_account(deposited, manager):
    '''very simple model of an investment account that delegates to a manager'''
    # must queue up manager:
    next(manager)      # <- same as manager.send(None)
    # This is where we send the initial deposit to the manager:
    manager.send(deposited)
    try:
        yield from manager
    except GeneratorExit:
        return manager.close()  # delegate?

And now we can delegate functionality to a sub-generator and it can be used by a generator just as above:

my_manager = money_manager(.06)
my_account = investment_account(1000, my_manager)
first_year_return = next(my_account) # -> 60.0

Now simulate adding another 1,000 to the account plus the return on the account (60.0):

next_year_return = my_account.send(first_year_return + 1000)
next_year_return # 123.6
my_account.close()

You can also throw an exception which can be handled in the generator or propagated back to the user:

import sys
try:
    raise ValueError
except:
    my_manager.throw(*sys.exc_info())
Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "<stdin>", line 4, in <module>
  File "<stdin>", line 6, in money_manager
  File "<stdin>", line 2, in <module>
ValueError

The grammar currently allows any expression in a list comprehension.

expr_stmt: testlist_star_expr (annassign | augassign (yield_expr|testlist) |
                     ('=' (yield_expr|testlist_star_expr))*)
...
yield_expr: 'yield' [yield_arg]
yield_arg: 'from' test | testlist

This means, for example, that range objects aren't Iterators, even though they are iterable, because they can be reused. Like lists, their __iter__ methods return iterator objects.