[Numpy-discussion] Plans for Numpy 1.4.0 and scipy 0.8.0

Neil Crighton neilcrighton@gmail....
Mon Jun 22 15:12:53 CDT 2009

David Cournapeau <cournape <at> gmail.com> writes:

> >>> David Cournapeau wrote:
> >>> > (Continuing the discussion initiated in the neighborhood iterator
> >>> > thread)
> >>> >     - Chuck suggested to drop python < 2.6 support from now on. I am
> >>> > against it without a very strong and detailed rationale, because many OS
> >>> > still don't have python 2.6 (RHEL, Ubuntu LTS).
> >>>
> >>> I vote against dropping support for python 2.5. Personally I have no
> >>> incentive to upgrade to 2.6 and am very happy with 2.5.
> >>
> >> Will requiring python-2.6 help the developers port numpy to python-3?
> >>
> >
> > Can't really say at this point, but it is the suggested path to
> > python-3.
> OTOH, I don't find the python 3 "official" transition story very
> convincing. I have tried to gather all the information I could find,
> both on the python wiki and from transitions stories. To support both
> python 2 and 3, the suggestion is to use the 2to3 script, but it is
> painfully slow for big packages like numpy. And there ave very few
> stories for porting python 3 C extensions.
> Another suggestion is to avoid breaking the API when transitioning for
> python 3. But that seems quite unrealistic. How do we deal with the
> removing of string/long APIs ? This will impact the numpy API as well,
> so how do we deal with it ?

As I understand this suggestion, they just hope external packages don't say
'Hey, if we're breaking backwards compatibility anyway, lets take the chance to
do a whole lot of extra API breakage!'  That way, if people have problems 
migrating to the new version, they know they're likely to be python 3 related.
Jarrod Millman's blog post about numpy and python 3 mentions this: 


> Also, there does not seem to be any advantages for python 3 for
> scientific people ?

I think there are lots of advantages in python 3 for scientific people.  The 
new integer division alone is a huge improvement.  I've been bitten by this 
(1/2 = 0) several times in the past, and the only reason I'm not bitten by it 
now is that I've trained myself to always type things like 1./x, which look 

The reorganisation of the standard library and the removal of duplicate ways of
doing things in the core also makes the language much easier to learn. This 
isn't a huge gain for people already familiar with Python's idiosyncracies, but
it's important for people first coming to the language.

Print becoming a function would have been a pain for interactive work, but 
happily ipython auto-parentheses takes care of that.

You could argue that moving to python 3 isn't attractive because there isn't 
any scientific library support, but then that's because numpy hasn't been 
ported to python 3 yet ;)



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