[SciPy-User] Pylab - standard packages

Skipper Seabold jsseabold@gmail....
Fri Sep 21 12:47:41 CDT 2012

On Fri, Sep 21, 2012 at 1:36 PM, Thomas Kluyver <takowl@gmail.com> wrote:

> On 21 September 2012 18:15, Skipper Seabold <jsseabold@gmail.com> wrote:
> > This sounds great. A few others I usually put in a fresh install.
> >
> > mpmath
> > sphinx
> I don't know about mpmath. I probably wouldn't include Sphinx in the
> spec, as it's important more when you're developing and releasing
> packages. But it does return us to the question about general-purpose
> Python packages. Should we require distribute, for example - or just
> specify that there must be a package installation mechanism? What
> about popular tools like requests? Or things like GUI toolkits that
> are difficult to install separately? Although PyQt would rather
> increase the minimum size.

I like the idea of trying to emulate something like R's install.package
(eventually). This, to me, is one of the reasons it's so successful. The
target audience, as I think it is for pylab, is users - people that are
proficient at writing scripts and generally smart problem solvers but not
necessarily extremely great programmers. For example, I don't think there's
an assumption that the average R user has working knowledge of how to build
a package from scratch. Developers, on the other hand, don't need too much
hand holding to get the other tools they need - e.g., compilers, sphinx
probably falls in here, etc. If having things like distribute in the
package helps move us in this direction (would it?), then I think that's a
good argument for including it.

> > I also like the idea of having (configurable) default imports (**with
> > namespaces**)
> I wondered when this question would come up. ;-) One of the pieces of
> baggage the Pylab name comes with is a the relatively flat namespace
> of the pylab module. I think we need to leave that reasonably intact,
> just to avoid annoying all the people who're familiar with it. We
> could define something like a pylab2 module, and encourage people to
> use that. But I suggest the namespaces vs. flat debate is something we
> postpone to a later discussion.
I will reserve my counter-arguments (and shouting and wild gesticulations)
until this later date.

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