[IPython-dev] gsoc with ipython

Fernando Perez fperez.net@gmail....
Mon Dec 6 02:40:03 CST 2010

Dear Daniel,

On Wed, Nov 24, 2010 at 3:19 AM, Daniel Cracan <danciac@gmail.com> wrote:
> I am a student at a technical university, and I would be interested in coding
> for the IPython project at gsoc this summer.
> I thought it would be much better if I got to know a bit more about the
> project, before applying for it at gsoc.
> So if there is anyone willing to point me to the right direction I would
> appreciate that very much.

I'm very sorry for the late reply, indeed as Erik indicated (thanks
for chiming in!) it was just a matter of being very swamped with 'real
life'.  But I'm glad to have you here, and indeed we have now in
ipython a lot of potential for new contributions.  There's still real
work to be done to 'land' the new zmq-based architecture in a fully
stable release, but I hope we'll be able to make headway again into
that soon.  And that means the time is right to start thinking about
gsoc projects.

I'm going to list a few things that need doing, for some of these
someone has already made a start but they aren't completed yet.  But
this is just so you get a sense of what's 'on the table'.  The best
contributions come always from matching a project's needs with the
interest of the student, so feel free to pick something that is close
to what *you* like and have skills for.  We can then help get you
started, so that by the time the gsoc rolls around, you have already
some momentum going.  In no particular order:

- allowing the new Qt console to work in a single process.  This may
appear paradoxical (since we did all that work to be able to run in
*two* processes), but there are scenarios where someone may want to
embed an IPython rich widget inside an existing application that has a
namespace to be interactively manipulated.  Mayavi is a prime example
that does that, and right now it would not be able to use our console,
since the Qt widget expects to be a separate process.

- continuing work on the html frontend that James Gao started:

I haven't talked to James recently, and he may be able to find time to
push forward again, so obviously we'd first sync with him before
proceeding.  But I expect this to be a fair amount of long-term work,
so even with James' foundation in place, there will be plenty more to

- Allowing the html notebook and the Qt widget to use the matplotlib
html5 backend, to get fully interactive windows inline.  I don't know
enough about Qt to be really sure if this is even possible, just an
idea right now.

- Develop a curses frontend.  Wendell Smith discussed this a while ago
and has some thoughts on the matter, but I don't know if he has made
significant inroads; you may want to ping him first.

- Work on the parallel parts: Min Ragan-Kelley has made phenomenal
progress recently on this, but it's possible that despite his
super-human abilities, he might still have more ideas than time to
code them up.  Now with the zmq support we have fairly ambitious plans
for what can be done with ipython, so there will be plenty of work on
this front.

This is just a starter list, let us know if any of it sounds
interesting/appealing to you and we'll direct you with a bit more
precision then.

Regards, and welcome to the project!


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