[SciPy-user] python (against java) advocacy for scientific projects
Tue Jan 20 16:58:23 CST 2009
Sturla Molden wrote:
> CERN ROOT is interesting though. It has a Python front end, and is LGPL
> licensed. For those who don't know, ROOT is a data analysis framework
> written for LHC (the new Doomsday machine), do deal with the enormous data
> sets it generates (I've heard it is about ~10 terabytes per run). But ROOT
> can be of general interest to scientists outside CERN as well.
I had a short exposition to ROOT codebase some years ago. While I
recognise that the project reached probably its goals, despite those
were is quite ambitious, the quality of the API and of the code is far
from being perfect.
The project suffers a lot from the choice of being developped in C++. At
the time when it was started C++ and its standard library was from being
standard on different compilers and platforms. For this reason there are
a lot of weels that has been re-engineered in ROOT.
Judging from the outside I think that at the time the project started
the only reason to use C++ where that it was the language chosen for
teaching at university level courses. Using C++ it was possible to hire
fairly inexpensive PhD students for the development...
ROOT uses a C++ interpreter to offer something similar to ipythin or
matlab console. It is simply a nightmer to work with it. And personaly I
think that the quality of C++ data analysis routines a physician can
write in hurry while working on an interesting experiment is probably
the worst code you can find (and I can tell that being among the ones
that wrote that kind of code...).
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