[Numpy-discussion] Updated differences between 1.5.1 to 1.6.1

Travis Oliphant travis@continuum...
Tue Feb 14 03:03:25 CST 2012

For reference, here is the table that shows the actual changes between 1.5.1 and 1.6.1 at least on 64-bit platforms in terms of type-casting.  I updated the comparison code to throw out changes that are just "spelling differences" (i.e. where 1.6.1 chooses to create an output dtype with an 'L' character code instead of a 'Q' which on 64-bit system is effectively the same).  

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	Mostly I'm happy with the changes (after a cursory review).  As I expected, there are some real improvements.    Of course, I haven't looked at the changes that occur when the scalar being used does not fit in the range of the array data-type.   I don't see this change documented in the link that Mark sent previously.   Is it somewhere else?   Also, it looks like previously object arrays were returned for some coercions which now simply fail.  Is that an expected result?  

At this point, I'm not going to recommend changes to 1.7 to deal with these type-casting changes --- at least this thread will serve to show some of what changes occurred if it bites anyone in the future.  

However, I will have other changes to NumPy 1.X that I will be proposing and writing (and directing other people to write as well).  After some period of quiet, this might be a refreshing change.  But, not all may see it that way.   I'm confident that we can resolve any concerns people might have.   Any feature additions will preserve backward compatibility in NumPy 1.X.   Mark W. will be helping with some of these changes, but mostly he will be working on NumPy 2.0 which we have tentatively targeted for next January.    We have a tentative target for NumPy 1.8 in June/July.    So far, there are three developers who will be working on NumPy 1.8 (me, Francesc Alted, and Bryan Van de Ven).  Mark Wiebe is slated to help us, as well, but I would like to sponsor him as much as possible on the work for NumPy 2.0.    If anyone else would like to join us, please let me know off-list.     There is room for another talented person on our team.    

In addition to a few select features in NumPy 1.8 (a list of which will follow in a later email),  we will also be working on reviewing the list of bugs on Trac and fixing them, writing tests, and improving docstrings.    I would also like to improve the state of the bug-tracker and get in place a continuous integration system for NumPy.   We will be advertising our NumPy 1.8 roadmap and our NumPy 2.0 roadmap at PyCon, and are working on documents that describe plans which we are hoping will be reviewed and discussed on this list.  

I know that having more people working on the code-base for several months will be a different scenario than what has transpired in the past.   Hopefully, this will be a productive time for everybody and our sometimes different perspectives will be able to coalesce into a better result for more people.   

Best regards,


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