[Numpy-discussion] updating Numeric

Perry Greenfield perry at stsci.edu
Sat Jan 22 08:41:16 CST 2005

Travis Oliphant wrote:

I'm not as negative on this as one might guess. While not as nice as
having one package that satifies both extremes (small vs large), making
the two have identical behavior for the capabilities they share would
make life much easier for users and those that want to write libraries
that support both. (Though note that I'm not sure it would be possible
to subclass one to get the other as I noted in my reply to Paul, though
I would like to be proved wrong). So I consider this a positive step


> I would like to try to extensively update Numeric.  Because of the 
> changes, I would like to call it Numeric3.0
> The goal is to create something that is an easier link between current 
> Numeric and future numarray.  It will be largely based on the current 
> Numeric code base (same overall structure).
> I'm looking for feedback and criticism so don't hesitate to tell me what 
> you think (positive or negative).  I'll put on my thickest skin :-)
> Changes: (in priority order)
> ================
> 1) Add support for multidimensional indexing            
> 2) Change coercion rule to "scalars don't count rule"
> 3) Add support for bool, long long (__int64), unsigned long long, long 
> double, complex long double, and unicode character arrays
> 4) Move to a new-style c-type (i.e. support for array objects being 
> sub-classable which was added in Python 2.2)
> 5) Add support for relevant parts of numarray's C-API (to allow code 
> written for numarray that just uses basic homogeneous data to work with 
> Numeric)
> 6) Add full IEEE support
> 7) Add warning system much like numarray for reporting errors (eliminate 
> check_array and friends).
> 8) optimize the ufuncs where-ever possible:  I can see a couple of 
> possibilities but would be interested in any help here.
> 9) other things I'm forgetting....
> Why it is not numarray?   I think there is a need for the tight 
> code-base of Numeric to continue with incremental improvements that 
> keeps the same concept of an array of homogeneous data types.  
> If sub-classing in c works well, then perhaps someday, numarray could 
> subclass Numeric for an even improved link between the two.
> I have not given up on the numarray and Numeric merging someday, I just 
> think we need an update to Numeric that moves Numeric forward in 
> directions that numarray has paved without sacrificing the things that 
> Numeric already does well.
> -Travis O.
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