[SciPy-dev] the current state and future directions of the sparse solvers

Ondrej Certik ondrej@certik...
Mon Apr 7 12:55:33 CDT 2008


these are probably mainly questions to Nathan. :)

First let me say that the new sparse functionality of scipy is
awesome, I really like it, it's just so easy and natural to work with
it. Thanks for your work on it.

Here I have some points:

1) Why do you want to remove umfpack wrappers from scipy? I suggest to
leave wrappers in there (those can be BSD, cannot they?), otherwise
it will be much harder for scipy users to use umfpack (they would have
to install scikits too). If so, could this warning message be removed?


if isUmfpack and noScikit:
    warn( 'scipy.sparse.linalg.dsolve.umfpack will be removed,'
          ' install scikits.umfpack instead', DeprecationWarning )

2) why was pysparse removed? are there any objections of adding it
among arpack and lobpcg solvers?

3) sometimes I also use blzpack - are there any objections if I
implement it (if I find time of course) the same way lobpcg and arpack
is in there?

4) I would love to see all available open source sparse solvers and
eigensolvers to be callable from scipy. Is this the intention of

If this is the intention, I'd like to help with this too -- there are
other good open source solvers out there, for example Primme (this one
is GPLed, but that's not a problem, the wrappers could
be in scipy, but users will install them themselves, or from scikits).

5) The documentation in the info.py files is quite good, there is also
some documentation at:


I have some improvements, for example
scipy/sparse/linalg/eigen/info.py is missing the lobpcg, the attached
patch fixes that. I used to have a commit access, but I forgot my
username && password -- can I ask for a renewal please? :)

Those are enough questions so far, depending on the answers, I'll
probably have some more then, regarding the interface. :)

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