[IPython-dev] Integrating pandas into pylab

Fernando Perez fperez.net@gmail....
Thu Oct 27 13:17:06 CDT 2011


On Thu, Oct 27, 2011 at 9:28 AM, Aaron Meurer <asmeurer@gmail.com> wrote:
> I think IPython could help on this front.  Instead of relying on good
> "See Also" sections in docstrings (though those are important too), it
> would be useful to have an IPython magic that searched the docstring
> of every name in the present namespace (pardon me if this already
> exists, I didn't find anything like it in %magic).
>
> That way, it would be easy for users to just import everything from
> pylab (or whatever), and try to find functions related to whatever
> functionality they are interested in.  This would be somewhat of an
> equivalent of the built-in help for a GUI program like Matlab or R
> GUI.  And of course, the GUI versions of IPython could (and should)
> have more GUI oriented versions of this.

Absolutely.  Now that we have frontends capable of presenting this
information in a richer manner, I hope someone will pitch in and
contribute a good system for help searching/introspection.  Even if
initially we don't match the fantastic Mathematica help browser, the
'where do I find a function to do X' question is one of the most
significant stumbling blocks newcomers face.  Just yesterday I was
lecturing at Berkeley (mostly grad students and postdocs, but new to
Python) and this came up persistently.

Cheers,

f


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