[AstroPy] [ANN] PyFITS 3.2.0 Released (along with 3.1.3 and 3.0.12)

Erik Bray embray at stsci.edu
Wed Nov 27 11:27:59 EST 2013

Hello all,

It is my honor to announce the latest feature release of PyFITS, v3.2.0.  It is 
accompanied by bug fix releases to the v3.1.x and v3.0.x series which include 
fixes backported from v3.2.0.  Thanks to everyone who raised issues and offered 
pull requests to get this done.  As always, you can submit any new issues that 
arise at PyFITS' GitHub [1], or through the Astropy project [2], or to 
help at stsci.edu.

It is worth noting also that this release coincides with Astropy v0.3 in that 
this version of PyFITS is essentially identical to the astropy.io.fits package 
in that release.  From now on we will try to keep PyFITS releases synchronized 
with Astropy releases so as to minimize differences between the two.

The PyFITS official website 
(http://www.stsci.edu/institute/software_hardware/pyfits/Download) provides 
installation instructions and lists downloads for all current versions.

Highlights of 3.2.0

- PyFITS now supports the latest version (2.3) of the Tiled Image Convention
   for compressed FITS images.  It will be better at keeping pace with this
   standard through better integration with CFITSIO.  A copy of the current
   version of CFITSIO (3.35) is included in the source distribution.
   (System packagers should take note of the README file in cextern/ for linking
   PyFITS with system copies of CFITSIO.)

- Support for the Q column format in BINARY tables.  This is identical to the P
   format (variable length arrays), except that it supports heap sizes greater
   that 4 GB.  In particular, this enables tile compression of larger images.

- Improved support for columns in BINARY tables holding "pseudo-unsigned"
   integers--that is, signed integers that are rescaled to unsigned integers
   using the appropriate TSCALn value.  As with uint support in images, it is
   necessary, for now, to open a file with the `uint=True` argument in order to
   enable support for this convention (thanks to Benjamin Weaver for contributing
   the lion's share of work on this).

Removed deprecated interfaces

As warned in the previous release, some interfaces that have been marked 
"deprecated" since the v3.0.0 release have been removed in order to reduce 
maintenance overhead.  Most of these are are rarely used directly, though the 
most common one would be Header.has_key.  Please use the `'key' in header` 
syntax to check presence of keywords in FITS headers, as this usage has been 
supported since at least v2.3.  For the complete list, please see the changelog [3].

Announcing *pending* end of support for Python 2.5

The PyFITS v3.3.0 release (not the current v3.2.0) will be the last to support 
Python 2.5.  PyFITS v3.4 and above will require Python 2.6 or greater.  It's 
doubtful that there will even be many stand-alone PyFITS releases beyond that, 
as most new development will ship to Astropy.

Announcing *pending* end of support for PyFITS v3.0.x

After the next PyFITS feature release (v3.3.0) no new bug fix releases will be 
made for the PyFITS 3.0.x series.  Exceptions may be made on a case by case 
basis if there is some critical operational need, but the download statistics 
suggest that there will not be much demand.

[1] https://github.com/spacetelescope/PyFITS
[2] http://www.astropy.org/help.html
[3] http://pythonhosted.org/pyfits/appendix/changelog.html

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