On Tue, 2005-07-26 at 09:30 -0700, Chris Barker wrote:

Soeren Sonnenburg wrote:

Hmmhh. I see that this again breaks with R/octave/matlab. One should not do so if there is no serious reason. It just makes life harder for every potential convert from any of these languages.

If you're looking for a matlab clone, use octave or psilab, or....

No I am not, I am sold to python.

Speaking as an ex-matlab user, I much prefer the NumPy approach. The reason is that I very rarely did linear algebra, and generally used matlab as a general computational environment. I got very tired of having to type that "." before all my operators. I also love array broadcasting, it seems so much cleaner and efficient.

Well coming from machine learning I am used to having just matrices.

When I moved from Matlab to NumPy, I missed these things:

Integrated plotting: many years later, this is still weak, but at least for 2-d matplotlib is wonderful.

I agree here. [no single numeric package in python]

But I'm not sure we should be sad about it. What we all want is the package best suited to our own needs to be in the standard library. However, I'd rather the current situation than having a package poorly suited to my needs in the standard library. As this thread proves, there is no one kind of array package that would fit even most people's needs.

However, there is some promise for the future:

1) SciPy base may serve to unify Numeric/numarray

2) Travis has introduced the "array interface"

http://numeric.scipy.org/array_interface.html

this would provide an efficient way for the various array and matrix packages to exchange data. It does have a hope of making it into the standard library, though even if it doesn't, if a wide variety of add-on packages use it, then the same thing is accomplished. If fact, if packages that don't implement an array type, but might use one (like PIL, wxPython, etc) accept this interface, then any package that implements it can be used together with them.

3) What about PEP 225: Elementwise/Objectwise Operators? It's listed under:

Deferred, Abandoned, Withdrawn, and Rejected PEPs

Which of those applied here? I had high hope for it one time.

By the way, I had not seen cvxopt before, thanks for the link. Perhaps it would serve as a better base for a full-featured linear algebra package than Numeric/numarray. Ideally, it could use the array interface, for easy exchange of data with other packages.

Actually that would be nice. Having had a closer look at cvxopt that might suit *my* needs more, but having an interface to get cvxopt matrices -> numarray/numeric without trouble to get certain potentially missing functionality would be nice. Thanks, Soeren