[AstroPy] astropy in Debian, Scientific Linux?

Leo Singer lsinger@caltech....
Sun Apr 7 19:18:37 CDT 2013

On Apr 7, 2013, at 2:50 PM, Sergio Pascual <sergio.pasra@gmail.com> wrote:

> the past year we had a discussion about SOFA, an IAU library astropy depends on, see the details here:
> https://groups.google.com/d/topic/astropy-dev/QVpMZFlsQUo/discussion
> In short:
>  * The Fedora legal team reviewed the SOFA license and they considered it non-free.
>  * I wrote the SOFA board asking for a license change, they did not answered my request 
>  * SOFA and (any program depending on it) *astropy* cannot be included in Fedora or EPEL (Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux) with the current SOFA license.
>  * astropy could be included by *removing* SOFA and the modules depending on it (astropy.time ?)
>  * somebody could package SOFA and astropy in rpmfusion.org, which provides non-free/free-with-legal-problems packages for Fedora and EPEL
>  * or in a different Fedora repository that provides 
>  * I think the situation in Debian is different
> Not having precompiled packages available in Fedora/EPEL is very bad for astropy in my opinion. From a small sample of 20 Professors-Postdocs-Students in my Astrophysics Department, I can say that only those doing software development use "pip". The vast majority use "yum" in Fedora or "fink/macports" in Mac to bring in the package and continue doing Science.

Wow, the SOFA license **is** pretty strange. What a shame.

Could you get the time conversion functions that you need from NOVAS (http://aa.usno.navy.mil/software/novas/novas_c/novasc_info.php)? Although you would want to contact its maintainers to check, I think that NOVAS is not just free, it's actually in the public domain.

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