[IPython-dev] New Data Science Initiative, aka where has Fernando been hiding for the last year?

Brian Granger ellisonbg at gmail.com
Wed Nov 13 11:29:58 EST 2013


Glad you can finally talk about this publicly! This is super exciting
for you, UC Berkeley, our community and IPython. Congratulations on a
good - and hard - work done. We have missed you on IPython :), but
this was a worthy investment of your time and energy. Looking forward
to where this leads...



On Wed, Nov 13, 2013 at 1:23 AM, Fernando Perez <fperez.net at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi all,
> this is an email that I've been waiting for almost a year to be able to
> write, and finally today I can do it...
> Almost a year ago, we announced the Sloan grant to support IPython
> development, and it would be reasonable to imagine that this would mean I
> would become significantly more active on the project than even before,
> since now IPython would be officially a large part of my job.  However,
> astute observers will have noticed quite the opposite: my contributions in
> code, github activity and mailing list traffic have actually gone down since
> that day, not up (in my meager defense, I still do a fair bit behind the
> scenes and face-to-face in Berkeley :)
> Obviously middle age decay and manager syndrome can probably account for
> much of that, but there was another reason.  On the *very same day* that we
> got the Sloan grant, I was pulled into a competition for another grant that
> Josh Greenberg, the same Sloan program director who funds us, was running in
> collaboration with the Moore foundation. This was a large effort to select
> three US universities for an ambitious project involving data science, where
> open source computational tools would play a central role.
> This became a very significant and time consuming project, but today we've
> been able to publicly announce the outcome, during an event at the White
> House OSTP.  Rather than repeating in this email everything, I'll just point
> to a blog post I wrote with the rest of the story:
> http://blog.fperez.org/2013/11/an-ambitious-experiment-in-data-science.html
> What does this mean for IPython?  Hopefully only good things: open source,
> and IPython specifically, were an important ingredient of the Berkeley
> proposal, and I expect to build at the new Berkeley Institute for Data
> Science a "place for people like us". The scientific Python culture at
> Berkeley is rapidly growing, in no small part thanks to the work of the
> great team at the DLab (dlab.berkeley.edu) who picked up my early py4science
> effort and now run a very active community. There's multiple projects on
> campus that involve scientific Python, all of them open source, and I am
> sure we'll be able to leverage this initiative in multiple productive ways
> for IPython and the larger ecosystem.
> As for myself, I do hope that next year I'll have more bandwidth for
> technical work on IPython. I have been able to remain plugged in to all our
> design work, but I *really* like to code, and I hate to be so far away from
> it. I hope my responsibilities at BIDS will still leave some room for it.
> Finally, I really want to thank Brian, Min, Thomas, Paul, Matthias and the
> rest of the team. You guys done far more than your fair share of the work,
> effectively picking up all of my slack in the most generous way imaginable.
> It's hard to think of a better team to work with.
> Cheers,
> f
> --
> Fernando Perez (@fperez_org; http://fperez.org)
> fperez.net-at-gmail: mailing lists only (I ignore this when swamped!)
> fernando.perez-at-berkeley: contact me here for any direct mail
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Brian E. Granger
Cal Poly State University, San Luis Obispo
bgranger at calpoly.edu and ellisonbg at gmail.com

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