[SciPy-user] FEM

Bill Baxter wbaxter@gmail....
Fri Mar 16 21:25:17 CDT 2007

Howdy, I don't do FEA, but the things I do are not so different.
You might find the matlab comparison web page useful:
Since I wrote a lot that page, I won't repeat the pros and cons
arguments here in detail, but rather refer you to that page.

Here's a quick summary of what I see to be the highlights:
* Python/Numpy/Scipy are much better when it comes to the language
itself and software development aspects, integrating with native code
in C/C++/Fortran, and applying spot-optimizations.

* Matlab is better (for now) when it comes to graphical debugging.
* Matlab is better (for now) when it comes to finding free code to
solve standard mathematical problem X.
* Matlab is better when it comes to profiling.

But keep on evangelizing.  As far as I see it, the advantages of
Python are intrinsic (it's based on a good language with broad
community), whereas Matlab's are temporary and derive primarily from
having a large head start.

Finally, especially for academia I think the licensing terms are a
very important consideration.


On 3/17/07, Håkan Jakobsson <hakan.jakobsson@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi list,
> Python/scipy newbie here. I'm currently writing my master's thesis in
> computational mathematics - discontinuous galerkin methods to be
> precise. I'v been doing all the numerics for my thesis in Matlab but
> stumbled upon Python and scipy by chance. As a little experiment I
> translated one of my solvers into Python using numpy, scipy and the
> pysparse packages, and I was very impressed with the effort/performance
> ratio. Now, to the point..
> If you're doing finite element analysis, what are you're experiences
> using Python? Do you use Python as your main development tool? In
> conjunction with C, Fortran? Is there any drawbacks with using Python
> for this type of work? Anything else?
> I hope I'm not asking to much here, but it would be really interesting
> to know a bit about what the situation's like. I think Python and scipy
> is really great, and now I'm trying to convince everyone else...
> Please, share with me your experiences.
> /Håkan J

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