[SciPy-dev] Do we care about the LAPACK C interface?

Michael Abshoff michael.abshoff@googlemail....
Fri Nov 7 21:35:52 CST 2008

Travis E. Oliphant wrote:
> Robert Kern wrote:
>> On Fri, Nov 7, 2008 at 17:27, Travis E. Oliphant <oliphant@enthought.com> wrote:


>>> Hi all,
>>> I'm sitting here in a BOF with Clint Whaley (the author of ATLAS).  He
>>> is looking for information about people that care about the C interface
>>> to LAPACK.  Do we care?
>>> I'm not clear on that.  Don't we just use the FORTRAN interfaces to ATLAS?

Wasn't there now some code in Scipy that depended on a CBLAS interface?

>>> If I hear from you soon, I can give Clint the information before I leave
>>> the BOF.
>> Query: Are you talking about just the C interface to LAPACK or the C
>> interface to the BLAS, too? I definitely want to keep the BLAS C
>> interface. It would be nice if there were a C interface to the entire

That is the current plane. The current code which is not a complete 
interface yet is in ATLAS 3.9.4 and is not feature complete yet.

>>, but I don't think that ATLAS (or anyone else) provides that
>> currently. That way, we would be able to worry less about mixing and
>> matching Fortran compilers (e.g. your distro builds ATLAS's LAPACK
>> with g77 and you want to use gfortran to build scipy). But since
>> ATLAS's LAPACK is a mixture of C and FORTRAN, I think we may be pretty
>> much stuck with that problem regardless.
> Clint Whaley has written some more C interfaces to LAPACK and was 
> wondering if anybody cared (or if he should stop doing it).   It sounds 
> like we should let him know that his efforts in this direction are 
> useful to us.

Clint actually has (had?) a student working on this, too, and his point 
was that he only would keep working on this if there were actual users 
of the interface. There is certainly interest from some people in the 
Sage project for such a C interface.

I guess in the end the hope is that by establishing a Lapack C interface 
via ATLAS other libraries will start to copy the interface, especially 
since it is BSD licensed code.

> -Travis



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