[SciPy-dev] Summer of Code: Proposal for Implementing date/time types in NumPy

Travis E. Oliphant oliphant@enthought....
Wed Mar 25 11:50:28 CDT 2009

Matt Knox wrote:
>> Hello,
>> I was reading through the Summer of Code ideas and I'm terribly
>> interested in date/time proposal
>> (http://projects.scipy.org/numpy/browser/trunk/doc/neps/datetime-proposal3.rst).
>> I would love to work on this for a Google Summer of Code project. I'm
>> a sophmore studying Computer Science and Mathematics at Kent State
>> University in Ohio, so this project directly relates to my studies. Is
>> there anyone looking into this proposal yet?
>> You might want to cross post on the numpy mailing list also just to make sure
>> Francesc sees it. Note also the recent post by Matt Knox (Recommended
>> compiler...), he and Pierre might also be interested in this work.
> Not to discourage anyone from working on this, but since my name was brought up
> I'll just mention that I am not personally that interested in this project as
> the scikits.timeseries package fulfills my needs for handling date/time data. We
> use an integer array with some meta data to represent the "dates" portion of our
> TimeSeries class and it seems to work fairly well for the most part. It isn't
> very often I need to store dates for the actual "values" in an array (as opposed
> to just representing the time dimension), but for the odd occasion that I do I
> find using an object dtype array with standard datetime values to be sufficient.
> That being said, the timeseries module is not the silver bullet for every need
> and does have limitations that are addressed in this proposal such as
> frequencies higher than seconds (microsecond, etc), but again these aren't
> interesting to me personally given the type of data I work with. And things like
> "Quarterly frequency with different origins" (mentioned at the bottom of the
> proposal) are very important for the timeseries module but considered out of
> scope for the date/time data type enhancement proposal.

I've had a chance recently to look at the Date class in the timeseries 
module and I liked the way it was put together.    I think it would 
benefit NumPy to have something like this class more tightly integrated 
with the NumPy distribution.    

My approach would be to make a NumPy dtype that is basically the Date 
class with more frequencies as taken from the date/time proposal.    
But, perhaps just pulling the DateArray into NumPy is a sufficient first 


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