[AstroPy] POLL: vision for a common Astronomy package

Peter Erwin erwin at mpe.mpg.de
Fri Jul 1 07:05:28 EDT 2011

On Jul 1, 2011, at 2:02 AM, Erik Tollerud wrote:

> Just to quickly address the process here:  The idea was that the
> vision document in particular needed to be drafted with a somewhat
> coherent vision, so we wanted to offer it for a vote quickly so as to
> get a sense as to whether everyone was on the same page here (so far
> at least, in seems most people are, given the votes and clarifications
> here).
> For future documents such as coding style and other planning
> documents, we will likely be issuing drafts and solicit
> comments/suggestions before putting a modified version to a vote.  In
> this particular case we felt that speed and consistency of vision
> would help the process proceed more quickly and stay organized,
> especially given that most of the details in the document are still
> open for change if it's desired.
> On the topic of GUIs, the thought was that it would be difficult to
> come to a consensus given how many different toolkits are in use and
> the fact that the learning curve is a fair bit steeper... so it would
> be great to settle on one, but it might alienate a fair number of
> otherwise interested developers, or reduce the knowledge base so much
> that we couldn't get off the ground for GUIs.  That said, I personally
> favor TraitsUI and the related Enthought tools, but I know there are
> other opinions...

I think avoiding trying to specify a particular GUI is an excellent idea, particularly
at this stage.

Ironically, I think part of the reasons for matplotlib's success is that *it* doesn't
depend on a particular GUI -- instead, they went for the difficult path of supporting
enough GUIs that it becomes likely you can install and use matplotlib without
having to install large, complex GUI packages (because you probably already have
one of the supported GUIs on your system).  Not that I'd recommend a "support
every GUI in detail" approach for astropy.



Peter Erwin                   Max-Planck-Insitute for Extraterrestrial 
erwin at mpe.mpg.de              Physics, Giessenbachstrasse
tel. +49 (0)89 30000 3695     85748 Garching, Germany
fax  +49 (0)89 30000 3495     http://www.mpe.mpg.de/~erwin

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