Python is a powerful, highlevel programming language that is widely used in industries such as scientific computing, data analysis, and web development. In Python, a function is a piece of code that performs a specific task and returns a value or set of values. In this article, we will focus on one of the most basic operations that a programmer needs to perform frequently – comparing two numbers. We will explore the various ways in which Python functions can help us in this task, along with code examples.
 Basic Comparison Operators
Python has six basic comparison operators that we can use to compare two numbers. These operators are:
 == (Equal to)
 != (Not equal to)
 < (Less than)
 <= (Less than or equal to)

(Greater than)

= (Greater than or equal to)
The basic syntax for using these operators to compare two numbers is:
if x operator y:
# do something
Here, x and y are the two numbers that we want to compare, and operator is one of the six comparison operators listed above. Let's look at some code examples to understand this concept better.
# Example 1  Equal to operator
x = 5
y = 5
if x == y:
print("x and y are equal")
# Output: x and y are equal
# Example 2  Not equal to operator
x = 5
y = 3
if x != y:
print("x and y are not equal")
# Output: x and y are not equal
# Example 3  Less than operator
x = 5
y = 10
if x < y:
print("x is less than y")
# Output: x is less than y
# Example 4  Less than or equal to operator
x = 5
y = 5
if x <= y:
print("x is less than or equal to y")
# Output: x is less than or equal to y
# Example 5  Greater than operator
x = 10
y = 5
if x > y:
print("x is greater than y")
# Output: x is greater than y
# Example 6  Greater than or equal to operator
x = 5
y = 5
if x >= y:
print("x is greater than or equal to y")
# Output: x is greater than or equal to y
 Function to compare two numbers
While using these basic comparison operators is straightforward, writing the same code repeatedly can become tedious. Moreover, longer code can become difficult to read and maintain. In such cases, defining a function can help us simplify our code and make it more reusable.
Let's define a Python function to compare two numbers using the basic comparison operators. The function will take two arguments (x and y) and return a string that describes the relationship between the two numbers. We can use this function in our code to perform comparisons easily.
def compare_numbers(x, y):
if x == y:
return "x and y are equal"
elif x != y:
return "x and y are not equal"
elif x < y:
return "x is less than y"
elif x <= y:
return "x is less than or equal to y"
elif x > y:
return "x is greater than y"
else:
return "x is greater than or equal to y"
To use this function, we can call it with two arguments (x and y) and store the result in a variable. We can then print the value of this variable to display the relationship between the two numbers.
# Example 1  Using the compare_numbers() function
x = 5
y = 5
result = compare_numbers(x, y)
print(result)
# Output: x and y are equal
# Example 2  Using the compare_numbers() function
x = 5
y = 3
result = compare_numbers(x, y)
print(result)
# Output: x and y are not equal
# Example 3  Using the compare_numbers() function
x = 5
y = 10
result = compare_numbers(x, y)
print(result)
# Output: x is less than y
# Example 4  Using the compare_numbers() function
x = 5
y = 5
result = compare_numbers(x, y)
print(result)
# Output: x is less than or equal to y
# Example 5  Using the compare_numbers() function
x = 10
y = 5
result = compare_numbers(x, y)
print(result)
# Output: x is greater than y
# Example 6  Using the compare_numbers() function
x = 5
y = 5
result = compare_numbers(x, y)
print(result)
# Output: x is greater than or equal to y
As we can see from the above examples, using a Python function can make our code shorter and more readable. We can use the same function to compare any two numbers in our code by simply passing them as arguments to the function.
Conclusion
Comparing two numbers is a fundamental operation in programming, and Python provides us with several ways in which we can do this. We can use the basic comparison operators to write code that directly compares two numbers. However, writing this code repeatedly can become tedious and difficult to maintain. Therefore, we can define a Python function to simplify our code and make it more reusable. Using a function can make our code shorter, more readable, and more modular, making it easier to debug and maintain.
 Basic Comparison Operators
Python's basic comparison operators, including ==, !=, <, <=, >, and >=, allow us to compare two numbers. These operators evaluate the relationship between the two numbers and return a Boolean value (True or False).
The equal to operator (==) checks if two numbers are equal. For example, if x == y will return True if x and y are the same number.
The not equal to operator (!=) checks if two numbers are different. For example, if x != y will return True if x and y are different numbers.
The less than operator (<) checks if the first number is smaller than the second number. For example, if x < y will return True if x is smaller than y.
The less than or equal to operator (<=) checks if the first number is smaller than or equal to the second number. For example, if x <= y will return True if x is smaller than or equal to y.
The greater than operator (>) checks if the first number is greater than the second number. For example, if x > y will return True if x is greater than y.
The greater than or equal to operator (>=) checks if the first number is greater than or equal to the second number. For example, if x >= y will return True if x is greater than or equal to y.
 Function to compare two numbers
As we have seen, writing code to compare two numbers using basic comparison operators can be timeconsuming and prone to errors. Therefore, we can define a Python function to simplify this task. A function that compares two numbers can take two parameters, the two numbers to compare, and can return a string or a Boolean resulting from the comparison.
A function to compare two numbers can include a series of if statements to test the relationship between the two numbers using basic comparison operators. This is useful when we need to perform the same comparison multiple times throughout the code.
In addition to making our code more readable and maintainable, defining a function to compare two numbers can help centralize our code, making it easier to debug and modify.
 Examples
Here are some examples of how to use a Python function to compare two numbers:
def compare_numbers(num1, num2):
if num1 == num2:
return num1 + " and " + num2 + " are equal."
elif num1 > num2:
return num1 + " is greater than " + num2 + "."
else:
return num1 + " is less than " + num2 + "."
num1 = 5
num2 = 3
result = compare_numbers(num1, num2)
print(result)
Output: "5 is greater than 3."
def is_even(num):
if num % 2 == 0:
return True
else:
return False
num = 6
if is_even(num):
print(num, "is even.")
else:
print(num, "is odd.")
Output: "6 is even."
In this example, is_even() is a function that takes a number as input and returns True if the number is even, and False if the number is odd. We can use this function to determine whether a number is even or odd in our code.
 Conclusion
In conclusion, when writing code in Python, comparing two numbers is a fundamental task that we will frequently encounter. To make this task easier, we can use Python's basic comparison operators, as well as define our own Python functions to compare two numbers. Using a function for this purpose can simplify our code, make it more readable and maintainable, and enable us to create more modular code.
Popular questions

What are the basic comparison operators in Python?
Answer: Python has six basic comparison operators: == (equal to), != (not equal to), < (less than), <= (less than or equal to), > (greater than), and >= (greater than or equal to). 
What does a comparison operator do in Python?
Answer: A comparison operator in Python evaluates the relationship between two numbers. It returns a Boolean value, either True or False depending on whether the comparison is true or false. 
Why should we define a Python function to compare two numbers?
Answer: Defining a Python function to compare two numbers can simplify our code, make it more readable and maintainable, and enable us to create more modular code. It also avoids writing the same code repeatedly and can centralize the code, making it easier to debug and modify. 
Can we use basic comparison operators directly to compare two numbers in Python, without defining a function?
Answer: Yes, we can use basic comparison operators directly to compare two numbers in Python without defining a function. However, if we need to perform the same comparison multiple times throughout the code, defining a function can make the code more efficient and readable. 
What is the purpose of the if statement when using basic comparison operators?
Answer: The if statement is used to test if a condition is True or False. It is commonly used in conjunction with basic comparison operators to perform specific tasks based on the comparison result. For example, if the two numbers are equal, if statements can execute certain code; if the first number is greater than the second number, it can execute a different set of code.
Tag
Comparison