[SciPy-Dev] Proposal for Scikit-Signal - a SciPy toolbox for signal processing

Gaël Varoquaux gael.varoquaux@normalesup....
Tue Jan 3 05:50:34 CST 2012

Hi Jaidev, hi list,

I am resending a mail that I sent a few weeks ago, as I am not sure why,
but I haven't been able to send to the list recently. This e-mail is a
bit out of context with the current discussion, but I'd just like to get
it out for the record, and because I originally wrote it to support the
idea. I am writing a new mail to address the current discussion.

-- Original mail --

Indeed, at the scipy India, Jaidev gave a great talk about the empirical
mode decomposition, and the Hilbert-Huang Transform. Given that I have
absolutely formal training in signal processing, one thing that I really
appreciated in his talk, is that I was able to sit back and actually
learn useful practical signal processing. Not many people go through the
work of making code and examples understandable to none experts.

That got me thinking that we, the scipy community, could really use a
signal processing toolkit, that non experts like me could use. There is a
lot of code lying around, in different toolkits (to list only
MIT/BSD-licensed code: nitime, talkbox, mne-python, some in matplotlib),
without mentioning code scattered on people's computer.

I think that such a project can bring value only if it manages to do more
than lumping individual code together. Namely it needs code quality,
consistency across functionality and good documentation and examples.
This value comes from the community dynamics that build around it. A
project with a low bus factor is a project that I am weary of. In
addition, once people start feeling excited and proud of it, the quality
of the contributions increases.

I do not have the time, nor the qualifications to drive a scikit-signal.
Jaidev is not very experimented in building scipy packages, but he has
the motivation and, I think, the skills. At scipy India, we pushed him to
give it a go. Hopefully, he will find the time to try, and walk down the
recipe I cooked up to create a project [1], but for the project to be
successful in the long run, it needs interest from other contributors of
the scipy ecosystem.

In the mean time, better docs and examples for scipy.signal would also
help. For instance, hilbert transform is in there, but because I don't
know signal processing, I do not know how to make a good use of it.
Investing time on that is a investment with little risks: it is editable
on line at http://docs.scipy.org/scipy/docs/scipy-docs/index.rst/

My 2 euro cents


[1] https://gist.github.com/1433151

PS: sorry if you receive this message twice.
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