[Numpy-discussion] A message from Cameron Laird

Travis N. Vaught travis at enthought.com
Fri Sep 20 10:55:02 CDT 2002

Thought I'd reply to all since I'm including some links that are possibly
interesting to the list:

> -----Original Message-----
> From: numpy-discussion-admin at lists.sourceforge.net
> [mailto:numpy-discussion-admin at lists.sourceforge.net]On Behalf Of Konrad
> Hinsen
> Sent: Friday, September 20, 2002 12:04 PM
> To: numpy-discussion at lists.sourceforge.net
> Subject: [Numpy-discussion] A message from Cameron Laird
> I send this on behalf of Cameron Laird <claird at phaseit.net>.
> Please reply to him, not to me.
>   I have at least a couple of assignments from magazines such
>   as IBM's developerWorks to report on matters that involve
>   Numeric.  I'd welcome contact from anyone here who wants to
>   publicize his or her work with Python and Numeric.

The SciPy Toolkit (http://www.scipy.org) attacks Matlab's functionality
head-on--providing much of the functional interface symantics that Matlab
provides and much much more. It is a stated goal of many in the SciPy
development community to eliminate the need for Matlab altogether by
providing a tool that offers _all_ the functionality and better performance
(among many other things) in an open-source, truly object-oriented package.

>   I have a particular interest in advantages Python and Numeric
>   enjoy over such alternatives as Mathematica, IDL, SAS/IML,
>   MATLAB, and so on, all of which are more narrowly targeted at
>   the kinds of scientific and engineering problems tackled by
>   contributors to this mailing list.  What does Python do for
>   you that the commercial products don't?
>   I suspect that many of you will mention, in one form or
>   another, Python's aptness for programming "in the large".
>   Do you have specific examples of how this is clumsy in
>   MATLAB, Mathematica, and so on?
>   Have you tried to interface MATLAB and so on to hardware
>   instrumentation or other external data sources?

The recent SciPy '02 workshop (http://www.scipy.org/site_content/scipy02)
had some presented material that tangentially addressed interfacing Matlab
and Mathematica (perhaps even in a bof, I've slept since then).  You might
try the scipy-user mailing list as well. (Presentations:
http://www.scipy.org/site_content/scipy02/presentations , Mailing list:

>   How do the scientists and engineers (as opposed to the
>   "informaticians" or software developers) on your teams
>   accept Python, compared to IDL and friends?  Do scientists
>   at your site program?
>   Is there anything Python's missing in its competition with
>   MATLAB and so on?

The aforementioned workshop included a survey that addressed these issues as
well.  You can look at the aggregated results by following the link below
(it's a little raw in its layout, let me know if there is a question about
how to interpret some things).

(note: some questions were 'pick one' and others were 'pick all that
apply'--the total number of surveys turned in was 36, I think.)

>   Cameron Laird       <Cameron at Lairds.com>       +1 281 996 8546 FAX
>   http://phaseit.net/claird/misc.writing/publications.html

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