[SciPy-dev] Scikits and stuff

Travis E. Oliphant oliphant@enthought....
Fri Dec 28 12:48:00 CST 2007

Brian Granger wrote:
>> In preparation for doc-day tomorrow, I've been thinking about scikits
>> and its relationship to scipy.   There seem to be three distinct
>> purposes of scikits:
>> 1) A place for specialized tool boxes that build on numpy and/or scipy
>> that live under a common name-space, but are too specialized to live in
>> scipy itself.
>> 2) A place for GPL or similarly-licensed tools so that people can
>> understand what they are getting and appropriate use can be made.
>> 3) A place for modularly-installed scipy tools.
>> Given these three purposes.  It seems that we should have three name-spaces:
> >From working with lots of end users, I get the feeling that just
> having numpy and scipy is complicated enough.  I completely understand
> why numpy and scipy are separate packages, but from a users
> perspective it _is_ complicated.  I get lots of questions from users
> who can't find such and such functions in numpy - when it is in scipy.
Very good.  This I can agree with.  I would love to see fewer 
namespaces.   Originally, I thought scikits was just supposed to be a 
place for GPL-like packages to go.  But, it would appear that others see 
other purposes for it.

Apparently nobody agrees that we need to keep scikits namespace from 
being a mine-field of GPL-like code.     I don't care enough about it to 
continue arguing. 

I don't buy the arguments that allowing a scipy-somepackage to be 
distributed separately is going to cause unwarranted confusion.  In 
fact, I would like it to cause a little-bit of confusion as to why it 
doesn't come installed with scipy already (although I suspect that in 
many distributions it will be delivered) because that puts pressure to 
get scipy-somepackage into scipy itself when it's user base grows.

So, I'm going to encourage that by moving some of the sandbox packages 
to that style of install and not into the scikits name-space.   Jarrod 
has a document listing the packages that are targeted for inclusion into 
scipy.  These should be distributed as scipy-somepackage (or 


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