[Numpy-discussion] Uncomfortable with matrix change

Jarrod Millman millman@berkeley....
Sat May 10 16:30:38 CDT 2008

On Sat, May 10, 2008 at 1:21 PM, Nathan Bell <wnbell@gmail.com> wrote:
> Would you object to raising a general Warning with a message like the following?
> "matrix indexing of the form x[0] is ambiguous, consider the explicit
> format x[0,:]"

I am not certain that there is universal agreement as to what x[0] or
x[0,:] should return.  Moreover, I don't think the phrase "ambiguous"
is entirely correct.  My understanding is that x[0] has a specified
behavior at this point and that in a later release it will still have
a specified behavior.  But there is some discussion as to whether we
should change that specific behavior.  So it isn't that it is
ambiguous exactly, but that we may change its meaning.  I guess it
might be reasonable to say something like "the developers are
currently discussing changing the meaning of x[0] (and perhaps even
x[0,:]), but we haven't agreed on how, or even if, we will change it."
 [If we are going to say that, we might want to suggest that our users
consider using arrays--not that I am arguing for that :)]

I don't think it is worth focusing much more effort on trying to come
up with some language that we all agree on to indicate that we are
discussing changing this in the future.  We have made considerable
progress in preparing for 1.1.0; we have nearly doubled the number of
tests, fixed nearly 200 bugs, greatly improved the quality and
coverage of our documentation, vastly improved MaskedArrays, fixed the
histogram, etc.  I think it may be time to release what we have at
this point and start working on 1.2.

Jarrod Millman
Computational Infrastructure for Research Labs
10 Giannini Hall, UC Berkeley
phone: 510.643.4014

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