[Numpy-discussion] Args for rand and randn: call for a vote
robert.kern at gmail.com
Sat Jul 8 14:38:17 CDT 2006
Ed Schofield wrote:
> Last week's discussion on rand() and randn() seemed to indicate a
> sentiment that they ought to take tuples for consistency with ones,
> zeros, eye, identity, and empty -- that, although they are supposed
> to be convenience functions, they are inconvenient precisely because
> of their inconsistency with these other functions. This issue has
> been raised many times over the past several months.
> Travis made a change in r2572 to allow tuples as arguments, then took
> it out again a few hours later, apparently unsure about whether this
> was a good idea.
He was experimenting to see if it was technically easy or not.
> I'd like to call for a vote on what people would prefer, and then ask
> Travis to make a final pronouncement before the feature freeze.
> * Should numpy.rand and numpy.randn accept sequences of dimensions as
> arguments, like rand((3,3)), as an alternative to rand(3,3)?
-1 This is worse than the problem it's trying to solve. You'll still see the
inconsistent rand(3,3) in people's code.
> * Should rand((3,3)) and randn((3,3)) continue to raise a TypeError?
This is a false dichotomy. There are more choices here.
* Remove rand and randn (at least from the toplevel namespace) and promote the
use of random_sample and standard_normal which already follow the tuple convention.
"I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma
that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had
an underlying truth."
-- Umberto Eco
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