[Numpy-discussion] Read array from file

Christopher Barker Chris.Barker@noaa....
Mon Mar 17 12:05:17 CDT 2008

lorenzo bolla wrote:
> what about numpy.loadtxt?

or, probably faster, the little-known (it seems) numpy.fromfile() text mode:

# Read and write the first information lines
for i in range(0,5):
     Fdif.write( Fpst.readline() )
# Read and write coordinates

coords =numpy.fromfile(Fpst,
                        sep=' ',


By the way, perhaps instead of "overloading" numpy.fromfile(), perhaps 
we should just have a separate numpy.fromtextfile() function. Maybe more 
people would notice it.

One more note:  Even without fromfile() or loadtxt(), you can simplify 
your code. Python's "duck typing" and numpy's array-orientation remove a 
number of steps:

for i in range(0,nnod):
   # Read line
   x = Fref.readline() # Read lines
   x = x.split()       # Split line to strings
   x = map ( float,x ) # Convert string elements to floats
   no need to make an array -- numpy can work with all python sequences.
   #x = array ( x )     # Make an array
   # no need to loop == numpy assignment works with sequences:
   #for j in range (0,3):
   coords[i,:] = x

Or, if you like putting code on one line (and list comprehensions):

for i in range(nnod):
     coords[i,:] = [float(x) for x in Fref.readline.split()]


Christopher Barker, Ph.D.

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