[SciPy-User] Pylab - standard packages

josef.pktd@gmai... josef.pktd@gmai...
Fri Sep 21 18:50:30 CDT 2012

On Fri, Sep 21, 2012 at 7:46 PM, Thomas Kluyver <takowl@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 21 September 2012 23:26, Fernando Perez <fperez.net@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Well, but the point of pylab *is* partly to 'legislate', since we're
>> defining a spec.  So it's a valid, relevant and I would argue
>> important question.  My contention is that
>> - *not* putting *a* notebook system into the spec is a mistake,
>> - if one is going to go in, the ipython one is the sensible choice.
> I see where both of you are coming from, but I'll argue from
> Nathaniel's side for a moment.
> Fernando sees Pylab as a way to push forward a system that outstrips
> the alternatives. Nathaniel views it as a formalisation of existing
> norms, which is also the angle I've come from. By analogy with Linux
> distributions, we are defining something like Linux Standard Base, and
> it's up to individual distributions to push what they consider the
> best possible experience. Imagine the protests if LSB specified a
> desktop environment. ;-)
> We already have major distributions which ship able to run the IPython
> notebook, and I don't expect them to drop that. If (when?) it becomes
> a de facto standard, we can add it as a requirement to a future
> version of the Pylab standard.
> In a sense, the minimum common denominator *is* what I'm aiming for,
> although that's obviously not how I would phrase it. I absolutely
> agree that the community should aim high, and we have some amazing
> tools to offer. But I don't think a standard is the right place to
> promote the latest and greatest. It's the launch pad, not the rocket.
> Nathaniel (some way above):
>> I just think we should remain agnostic for now about how you "ask for
>> a shell" -- whether that's opening an ipython notebook, or clicking
>> Interpreter -> New in Spyder, or whatever.
> This is exactly the *wrong* place to be agnostic. The very first thing
> in the tutorial should be specified as precisely as possible - start a
> terminal, enter 'ipython --pylab'. Of course, the distribution can

If this goes back to the import * issue, then I call Skipper.
all our tutorials and examples start with full imports and no stars,
and I doubt that will change.


> provide and promote whatever interfaces they want in addition to that
> - embedded shells, notebooks, IDEs, and so on. Curious users will
> always explore beyond the tutorial. But I think it's very important
> that there's a consistent, predictable way to bring up a shell across
> all distributions. And as we discussed before, IPython-the-REPL *is* a
> de facto standard.
> Thanks,
> Thomas
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