Python Style Guide

If you are new to python style, we recommend reading this introduction.

Gryphon style follows PEP8 and the Google Python Style Guide by default, with certain extra rules.

Always run flake8 on new files from the root gryphon package directory (to pick up the project’s setup.cfg). It should pass without errors. If an error shows up that disagrees with this style guide, discuss and consider adding it to flake8’s ignore list

Use cdecimal.Decimal, not naked scalar values

Decimal is superior to python’s built-in float class for handling high-precision numbers. Never use naked floats, unless comparing a Decimal or Money against zero, which is well defined.

When creating Decimal objects, use quotes around the scalar value. This might seem odd at first but is critical to preventing difficult-to-diagnose bugs.

# Yes:
spread = Decimal('0.004')

# No no no, asking for trouble:
spread = Decimal(0.004)

Use Money Objects for quantities of an asset

When working with currency or asset quantities, use

Equivalently to Decimal, always use quotes around the quantity when defining Money objects. Write the currency code in uppercase.

# Yes:
order_volume = Money('10', 'ETH')

# Nope, never.
order_volume = Money(10, 'ETH')
order_volume = Money('10', 'eth')

Line Length

90 characters. Set your terminal/editor at 92/93 characters width if you are using line numbers.


4-space soft tabs, no trailing whitespace at end of lines or on empty lines. Newlines at end of files

Multi-lining function definitions

The current style is to just keep it all on one line and ignore the character limit. TODO: Figure out something better.

Multiline Conditionals

if ("order not found" in error_string
        or "order already done" in error_string):
    raise CancelOrderNotFoundError()

We break the line before the binary operator. Many sources use the opposite but we prefer to keep the operator nearer it’s right operand. More explanation:

Use English Style in comments

Comments should more or less follow valid english grammar and syntax, including periods at the end of sentences and capitalized first letters. Follow english style described in: The Elements of Style.


Most methods should have them. They describe the purpose of the method or class, and how to use it.

def message_dev(dev):
    """Send the dev a checkin message on hipchat."""

def message_dev(dev):
    Send the dev a checkin message on hipchat.

    [... more details about how to use this function]

Block comments

# This is a block comment.
# It can go onto a new line when it makes sense, or after
# hitting the 90 character limit.

Blank lines

Follow google. Two blank lines between top-level definitions, be they function or class definitions. One blank line between method definitions and between the class line and the first method.

Use blank lines around logical blocks of code and especially condition blocks.


Follow google, with sections for stdlib, 3rd party, and gryphon imports, separated by newlines.

import os
import time

import delorean

from gryphon.lib import configuration
from import order_types

Do not use function imports.

String Quotes

Only single quotes.

Deprecated Functions

Delete them.

File encoding

Add # -*- coding: utf-8 -*- only if the file contains utf-8 characters