[IPython-dev] prose, notebooks, and thrashing (and a re-direct to another list)
bussonniermatthias at gmail.com
Mon Jul 29 12:06:06 EDT 2013
Le 29 juil. 2013 à 17:13, Greg Wilson a écrit :
> I posted the message below to the Software Carpentry discussion list a
> few minutes ago. I'd appreciate input from the IPython Notebook
> community as well.
> p.s. if anyone has a good way to manage discussion that spans two
> independent mailing lists, I'm all ears... :-)
I'll be carefull to click reply all :-)
Most of the point you are making were discussed during last week meeting.
TL DR, depending on the case , it already exist, or you will have to wait for 2.0.
> My four use cases are:
> * instructor's guide: to help instructors prepare for a bootcamp
> * lecture notes: what instructors use during a bootcamp
> * workbook: what learners are given to use during a bootcamp
> * textbook: what learners use on their own outside a bootcamp
> Problem #1: how do we manage material that ought to appear in multiple
> documents? Right now, each snippet is a separate HTML file that is
> %include'd to assemble the entire document (see
> That works OK for HTML pages, but not for notebooks: as far as I know,
> there's no way to %include file X in notebook Y.
2.0 and probably will need dexy. (http://www.dexy.it/)
right now you can import one notebook as a python package
We will add the possibility to add cell tags (~css .class selector) and cell name (~ html #id)
to refer to cell in conversion proccess.
[NDR, you can already attach arbitrary json to cells, it's just a matter of defining an expected structure.
Thoses data are already accessible in nbconvert if you want some cells not to appear in converted output.
> * If the item I'm currently talking about is centered on the screen,
> learners can see my next points on screen below it. This is distracting
> --- so distracting that tools like PowerPoint and other slideshow tools
> were invented in part to prevent it happening. If the notebook
> supported progressive reveal of pre-made cells, that problem would lessen.
... Have you seen slideshow mode ?
Have a look at F. Perez, B Granger and P. Ivanov talk ant las scipy.
Show cell one by one, skip some cells... etc
this is still a live notebook so you can execute cells live.
(won't provide the link as it is still in dev but google is your friend)
> * Even with that, though, one of the most compelling reasons to use the
> notebook as a lecture tool is lost. Learners really like us typing code
> in as we teach: it slows us down, which makes it more likely that we'll
> walk through the code at a comprehensible pace, and it makes it a lot
> easier for us to extemporize in response to their questions or
> confusion. We lose both benefits if we start using "reveal next",
> though we're still better off than if we use slides.
I had a POC of revealing code cell by blocks.
> * (medium-sized) In order to extract stuff from notebooks for use
> elsewhere, we need a way to tag the cells that contain objectives, notes
> for the key point summary, etc., so that our tool can find and
> differentiate them. I *think* this can be done via a plugin: the
> notebook has an extensible metadata field per cell, which we've already
> exploited for another tool, so adding something that allows "right click
> and select tag" should be straightforward. It would be nice if this info
> was available as a class on the HTML element containing the material, so
> that it could be styled via CSS, but that's a bonus.
Yes, that's on my todo list. This would require SC to ship notebook with custom profiles.
There is just some edge cases at loading time.
> * (large) Literal ________'s in our code will make it invalid, so our
> notebooks either won't have any output (because we didn't execute the
> code) or will be littered with error messages (because we did). The
> former's not bad, but if we do that, we need two version of each
> notebook: one with the blanks, and one with them filled in. As always,
> keeping variants of a single document in sync will be a pain.
You could store the "answers" into the metadata of each cell that maps the Nth ____
to it's value. We can come up with something.
> If the code in cells was stored as HTML, we could put something like
> to display ________, erase it when the learner started typing, or fill
> it in with the right answer when the learner just wanted to catch up or
> see the answer. Problem is, the code *isn't* stored as HTML; it's stored
> as JSON that looks like this:
If you are diving into implementation I would have something like notebook creator typing:
for §char§ in "GATTACA":
if §char == "A"§:
print "found an A"
and a cell toolbar button that store this in the json MD, and at load time you can live replace by ____
or strip the §. it should even be possible to add a execute hook to code cell that strip the § before running the cell
which would be convenient.
Not sure on how to live replace ___ if learner start typing though.
> We could use character offsets to identify subsections of the code, then
> intercept rendering to insert span elements, but that way lies madness...
> So as I said at the outset, I feel like I'm thrashing here, and would
> welcome suggestions on how to proceed.
Will gladly try to help, most of what you ask is often requested, and I would love to have more time to help.
Sadly PhD (and code IPython first), but I'll try to describe in a blog post how most of thoses things can be done.
It will just take me some time as I wish to do them well instead of just publishing a hawkish POC.
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