[Numpy-discussion] Numeric3

konrad.hinsen at laposte.net konrad.hinsen at laposte.net
Sun Feb 6 08:42:21 CST 2005

On 06.02.2005, at 01:06, Travis Oliphant wrote:

> But MATLAB is a huge package.  SciPy has been trying to do the same  
> thing.  Plotting was needed and matplotlib did a great thing in  
> providing excellent plotting.  I've never understood the reason for  
> matplotlib to remain separate except as evidence of the great schism  
> that was occuring in the community.
> In fact, when Eric and I began scipy, I wanted to call it pylab  
> (you'll notice I have the pylab.sourceforge.net site).  I have fond  
> ties to MATLAB myself.

That's actually one of the non-technical issues I have with SciPy.  
SciPy "smells" like Matlab. Which is fine for those who know and like  
Matlab, but not for those (like me) who find Matlab rather incompatible  
with their brains. SciPy, like Matlab, is based on the principle that  
all operations should be expressed in terms of arrays. My personal  
approach is that operations should be expressed in terms of  
problem-specific classes in which the internal use of arrays is an  
implementation detail.

There are arguments for and against both approaches, and I think there  
is space (meme space) for both. I just mention this to point out that I  
don't expect SciPy to become the one and only scientific Python library  
that includes everything. I don't expect to contribute code to SciPy,  
for example. I wouldn't mind using it, of course, in the implementation  
of my classes, if and when the installation issues become less of a  

Konrad Hinsen
Laboratoire Leon Brillouin, CEA Saclay,
91191 Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex, France
Tel.: +33-1 69 08 79 25
Fax: +33-1 69 08 82 61
E-Mail: khinsen at cea.fr

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