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:mod:`simplejson` --- JSON encoder and decoder

.. module:: simplejson
   :synopsis: Encode and decode the JSON format.
.. moduleauthor:: Bob Ippolito <bob@redivi.com>
.. sectionauthor:: Bob Ippolito <bob@redivi.com>

JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) <http://json.org> is a subset of JavaScript syntax (ECMA-262 3rd edition) used as a lightweight data interchange format.

:mod:`simplejson` exposes an API familiar to users of the standard library :mod:`marshal` and :mod:`pickle` modules. It is the externally maintained version of the :mod:`json` library contained in Python 2.6, but maintains compatibility with Python 2.4 and Python 2.5 and (currently) has significant performance advantages, even without using the optional C extension for speedups.

Encoding basic Python object hierarchies:

>>> import simplejson as json
>>> json.dumps(['foo', {'bar': ('baz', None, 1.0, 2)}])
'["foo", {"bar": ["baz", null, 1.0, 2]}]'
>>> print json.dumps("\"foo\bar")
"\"foo\bar"
>>> print json.dumps(u'\u1234')
"\u1234"
>>> print json.dumps('\\')
"\\"
>>> print json.dumps({"c": 0, "b": 0, "a": 0}, sort_keys=True)
{"a": 0, "b": 0, "c": 0}
>>> from StringIO import StringIO
>>> io = StringIO()
>>> json.dump(['streaming API'], io)
>>> io.getvalue()
'["streaming API"]'

Compact encoding:

>>> import simplejson as json
>>> json.dumps([1,2,3,{'4': 5, '6': 7}], separators=(',',':'))
'[1,2,3,{"4":5,"6":7}]'

Pretty printing:

>>> import simplejson as json
>>> s = json.dumps({'4': 5, '6': 7}, sort_keys=True, indent=4)
>>> print '\n'.join([l.rstrip() for l in  s.splitlines()])
{
    "4": 5,
    "6": 7
}

Decoding JSON:

>>> import simplejson as json
>>> obj = [u'foo', {u'bar': [u'baz', None, 1.0, 2]}]
>>> json.loads('["foo", {"bar":["baz", null, 1.0, 2]}]') == obj
True
>>> json.loads('"\\"foo\\bar"') == u'"foo\x08ar'
True
>>> from StringIO import StringIO
>>> io = StringIO('["streaming API"]')
>>> json.load(io)[0] == 'streaming API'
True

Specializing JSON object decoding:

>>> import simplejson as json
>>> def as_complex(dct):
...     if '__complex__' in dct:
...         return complex(dct['real'], dct['imag'])
...     return dct
...
>>> json.loads('{"__complex__": true, "real": 1, "imag": 2}',
...     object_hook=as_complex)
(1+2j)
>>> import decimal
>>> json.loads('1.1', parse_float=decimal.Decimal) == decimal.Decimal('1.1')
True

Specializing JSON object encoding:

>>> import simplejson as json
>>> def encode_complex(obj):
...     if isinstance(obj, complex):
...         return [obj.real, obj.imag]
...     raise TypeError(repr(o) + " is not JSON serializable")
...
>>> json.dumps(2 + 1j, default=encode_complex)
'[2.0, 1.0]'
>>> json.JSONEncoder(default=encode_complex).encode(2 + 1j)
'[2.0, 1.0]'
>>> ''.join(json.JSONEncoder(default=encode_complex).iterencode(2 + 1j))
'[2.0, 1.0]'

Using :mod:`simplejson.tool` from the shell to validate and pretty-print:

$ echo '{"json":"obj"}' | python -m simplejson.tool
{
    "json": "obj"
}
$ echo '{ 1.2:3.4}' | python -m simplejson.tool
Expecting property name: line 1 column 2 (char 2)

Note

The JSON produced by this module's default settings is a subset of YAML, so it may be used as a serializer for that as well.

Basic Usage

.. function:: dump(obj, fp[, skipkeys[, ensure_ascii[, check_circular[, allow_nan[, cls[, indent[, separators[, encoding[, default[, **kw]]]]]]]]]])

   Serialize *obj* as a JSON formatted stream to *fp* (a ``.write()``-supporting
   file-like object).

   If *skipkeys* is true (default: ``False``), then dict keys that are not
   of a basic type (:class:`str`, :class:`unicode`, :class:`int`, :class:`long`,
   :class:`float`, :class:`bool`, ``None``) will be skipped instead of raising a
   :exc:`TypeError`.

   If *ensure_ascii* is false (default: ``True``), then some chunks written
   to *fp* may be :class:`unicode` instances, subject to normal Python
   :class:`str` to :class:`unicode` coercion rules.  Unless ``fp.write()``
   explicitly understands :class:`unicode` (as in :func:`codecs.getwriter`) this
   is likely to cause an error. It's best to leave the default settings, because
   they are safe and it is highly optimized.

   If *check_circular* is false (default: ``True``), then the circular
   reference check for container types will be skipped and a circular reference
   will result in an :exc:`OverflowError` (or worse).

   If *allow_nan* is false (default: ``True``), then it will be a
   :exc:`ValueError` to serialize out of range :class:`float` values (``nan``,
   ``inf``, ``-inf``) in strict compliance of the JSON specification.
   If *allow_nan* is true, their JavaScript equivalents will be used
   (``NaN``, ``Infinity``, ``-Infinity``).

   If *indent* is a non-negative integer, then JSON array elements and object
   members will be pretty-printed with that indent level.  An indent level of 0
   will only insert newlines.  ``None`` (the default) selects the most compact
   representation.

   If specified, *separators* should be an ``(item_separator, dict_separator)``
   tuple.  By default, ``(', ', ': ')`` are used.  To get the most compact JSON
   representation, you should specify ``(',', ':')`` to eliminate whitespace.

   *encoding* is the character encoding for str instances, default is
   ``'utf-8'``.

   If specified, *default* should be a function that gets called for objects
   that can't otherwise be serialized.  It should return a JSON encodable
   version of the object or raise a :exc:`TypeError`.  If not specified,
   :exc:`TypeError` is always raised in those cases.

   To use a custom :class:`JSONEncoder` subclass (e.g. one that overrides the
   :meth:`default` method to serialize additional types), specify it with the
   *cls* kwarg.

    .. note::

        JSON is not a framed protocol so unlike :mod:`pickle` or :mod:`marshal` it
        does not make sense to serialize more than one JSON document without some
        container protocol to delimit them.

.. function:: dumps(obj[, skipkeys[, ensure_ascii[, check_circular[, allow_nan[, cls[, indent[, separators[, encoding[, default[, **kw]]]]]]]]]])

   Serialize *obj* to a JSON formatted :class:`str`.

   If *ensure_ascii* is false, then the return value will be a
   :class:`unicode` instance.  The other arguments have the same meaning as in
   :func:`dump`. Note that the default *ensure_ascii* setting has much
   better performance.

.. function:: load(fp[, encoding[, cls[, object_hook[, parse_float[, parse_int[, parse_constant[, **kw]]]]]]])

   Deserialize *fp* (a ``.read()``-supporting file-like object containing a JSON
   document) to a Python object.

   If the contents of *fp* are encoded with an ASCII based encoding other than
   UTF-8 (e.g. latin-1), then an appropriate *encoding* name must be specified.
   Encodings that are not ASCII based (such as UCS-2) are not allowed, and
   should be wrapped with ``codecs.getreader(fp)(encoding)``, or simply decoded
   to a :class:`unicode` object and passed to :func:`loads`. The default
   setting of ``'utf-8'`` is fastest and should be using whenever possible.

   *object_hook* is an optional function that will be called with the result of
   any object literal decode (a :class:`dict`).  The return value of
   *object_hook* will be used instead of the :class:`dict`.  This feature can be used
   to implement custom decoders (e.g. JSON-RPC class hinting).

   *parse_float*, if specified, will be called with the string of every JSON
   float to be decoded.  By default, this is equivalent to ``float(num_str)``.
   This can be used to use another datatype or parser for JSON floats
   (e.g. :class:`decimal.Decimal`).

   *parse_int*, if specified, will be called with the string of every JSON int
   to be decoded.  By default, this is equivalent to ``int(num_str)``.  This can
   be used to use another datatype or parser for JSON integers
   (e.g. :class:`float`).

   *parse_constant*, if specified, will be called with one of the following
   strings: ``'-Infinity'``, ``'Infinity'``, ``'NaN'``.  This can be used to
   raise an exception if invalid JSON numbers are encountered.

   To use a custom :class:`JSONDecoder` subclass, specify it with the ``cls``
   kwarg.  Additional keyword arguments will be passed to the constructor of the
   class.

    .. note::

        :func:`load` will read the rest of the file-like object as a string and
        then call :func:`loads`. It does not stop at the end of the first valid
        JSON document it finds and it will raise an error if there is anything
        other than whitespace after the document. Except for files containing
        only one JSON document, it is recommended to use :func:`loads`.

.. function:: loads(s[, encoding[, cls[, object_hook[, parse_float[, parse_int[, parse_constant[, **kw]]]]]]])

   Deserialize *s* (a :class:`str` or :class:`unicode` instance containing a JSON
   document) to a Python object.

   If *s* is a :class:`str` instance and is encoded with an ASCII based encoding
   other than UTF-8 (e.g. latin-1), then an appropriate *encoding* name must be
   specified.  Encodings that are not ASCII based (such as UCS-2) are not
   allowed and should be decoded to :class:`unicode` first.

   The other arguments have the same meaning as in :func:`load`.

Encoders and decoders

Simple JSON decoder.

Performs the following translations in decoding by default:

JSON Python
object dict
array list
string unicode
number (int) int, long
number (real) float
true True
false False
null None

It also understands NaN, Infinity, and -Infinity as their corresponding float values, which is outside the JSON spec.

encoding determines the encoding used to interpret any :class:`str` objects decoded by this instance ('utf-8' by default). It has no effect when decoding :class:`unicode` objects.

Note that currently only encodings that are a superset of ASCII work, strings of other encodings should be passed in as :class:`unicode`.

object_hook, if specified, will be called with the result of every JSON object decoded and its return value will be used in place of the given :class:`dict`. This can be used to provide custom deserializations (e.g. to support JSON-RPC class hinting).

parse_float, if specified, will be called with the string of every JSON float to be decoded. By default, this is equivalent to float(num_str). This can be used to use another datatype or parser for JSON floats (e.g. :class:`decimal.Decimal`).

parse_int, if specified, will be called with the string of every JSON int to be decoded. By default, this is equivalent to int(num_str). This can be used to use another datatype or parser for JSON integers (e.g. :class:`float`).

parse_constant, if specified, will be called with one of the following strings: '-Infinity', 'Infinity', 'NaN'. This can be used to raise an exception if invalid JSON numbers are encountered.

strict controls the parser's behavior when it encounters an invalid control character in a string. The default setting of True means that unescaped control characters are parse errors, if False then control characters will be allowed in strings.

.. method:: decode(s)

   Return the Python representation of *s* (a :class:`str` or
   :class:`unicode` instance containing a JSON document)
.. method:: raw_decode(s)

   Decode a JSON document from *s* (a :class:`str` or :class:`unicode`
   beginning with a JSON document) and return a 2-tuple of the Python
   representation and the index in *s* where the document ended.

   This can be used to decode a JSON document from a string that may have
   extraneous data at the end.

Extensible JSON encoder for Python data structures.

Supports the following objects and types by default:

Python JSON
dict object
list, tuple array
str, unicode string
int, long, float number
True true
False false
None null

To extend this to recognize other objects, subclass and implement a :meth:`default` method with another method that returns a serializable object for o if possible, otherwise it should call the superclass implementation (to raise :exc:`TypeError`).

If skipkeys is false (the default), then it is a :exc:`TypeError` to attempt encoding of keys that are not str, int, long, float or None. If skipkeys is true, such items are simply skipped.

If ensure_ascii is true (the default), the output is guaranteed to be :class:`str` objects with all incoming unicode characters escaped. If ensure_ascii is false, the output will be a unicode object.

If check_circular is false (the default), then lists, dicts, and custom encoded objects will be checked for circular references during encoding to prevent an infinite recursion (which would cause an :exc:`OverflowError`). Otherwise, no such check takes place.

If allow_nan is true (the default), then NaN, Infinity, and -Infinity will be encoded as such. This behavior is not JSON specification compliant, but is consistent with most JavaScript based encoders and decoders. Otherwise, it will be a :exc:`ValueError` to encode such floats.

If sort_keys is true (the default), then the output of dictionaries will be sorted by key; this is useful for regression tests to ensure that JSON serializations can be compared on a day-to-day basis.

If indent is a non-negative integer (it is None by default), then JSON array elements and object members will be pretty-printed with that indent level. An indent level of 0 will only insert newlines. None is the most compact representation.

If specified, separators should be an (item_separator, key_separator) tuple. By default, (', ', ': ') are used. To get the most compact JSON representation, you should specify (',', ':') to eliminate whitespace.

If specified, default should be a function that gets called for objects that can't otherwise be serialized. It should return a JSON encodable version of the object or raise a :exc:`TypeError`.

If encoding is not None, then all input strings will be transformed into unicode using that encoding prior to JSON-encoding. The default is 'utf-8'.

.. method:: default(o)

   Implement this method in a subclass such that it returns a serializable
   object for *o*, or calls the base implementation (to raise a
   :exc:`TypeError`).

   For example, to support arbitrary iterators, you could implement default
   like this::

      def default(self, o):
         try:
             iterable = iter(o)
         except TypeError:
             pass
         else:
             return list(iterable)
         return JSONEncoder.default(self, o)

.. method:: encode(o)

   Return a JSON string representation of a Python data structure, *o*.  For
   example::

     >>> import simplejson as json
     >>> json.JSONEncoder().encode({"foo": ["bar", "baz"]})
     '{"foo": ["bar", "baz"]}'

.. method:: iterencode(o)

   Encode the given object, *o*, and yield each string representation as
   available.  For example::

         for chunk in JSONEncoder().iterencode(bigobject):
             mysocket.write(chunk)

   Note that :meth:`encode` has much better performance than
   :meth:`iterencode`.