“Okay okay okay, boolean variables, boolean expressions, blah blah blah, I thought I was learning how to build control flow into my code!”

You are, I promise you!

Understanding boolean variables and expressions is essential because they are the building blocks of conditional statements.

Recall the waking-up example from the beginning of this lesson. The decision-making process of “Is it raining? If so, bring an umbrella” is a conditional statement.

Here it is phrased in a different way:

If it is raining, then bring an umbrella.

Can you pick out the boolean expression here?

Right, "it is raining" is the boolean expression, and this conditional statement is checking to see if it is True.

If "it is raining" == True then the rest of the conditional statement will be executed and you will bring an umbrella.

This is the form of a conditional statement:

If [it is raining], then [bring an umbrella]

In Python, it looks very similar:

if is_raining: print("bring an umbrella")

You’ll notice that instead of “then” we have a colon, :. That tells the computer that what’s coming next is what should be executed if the condition is met.

Let’s take a look at another conditional statement:

if 2 == 4 - 2: print("apple")

Will this code print apple to the terminal?

Yes, because the condition of the if statement, 2 == 4 - 2 is True.

Let’s work through a couple more together.



In script.py, there is an if statement. I wrote this because my coworker Dave kept using my computer without permission and he is a real doofus. If the user_name is Dave, it tells him to stay off my computer.

Enter a user name in the field for user_name and try running the program.


Oh no! We got a SyntaxError! This happens when we make a small error in the syntax of the conditional statement.

Read through the error message carefully and see if you can find the error. Then, fix it, and run the code again.


Ugh! Dave got around my security and has been logging onto my computer using our coworker Angela’s user name, angela_catlady_87.

Set your user_name to be angela_catlady_87.

Update the program with a second if statement so it checks for Angela’s user name as well and prints

"I know it is you, Dave! Go away!"

in response. That’ll teach him!

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