[Numpy-discussion] Array and string interoperability

Chris Barker chris.barker at noaa.gov
Mon Jun 5 18:51:11 EDT 2017

On Mon, Jun 5, 2017 at 1:51 PM, Thomas Jollans <tjol at tjol.eu> wrote:

> > and overloading fromstring() to mean both "binary dump of data" and
> > "parse the text" due to whether the sep argument is set was always a
> > bad idea :-(
> >
> > .. and fromstring(s, sep=a_sep_char)
> As it happens, this is pretty much what stdlib bytearray does since 3.2
> (http://bugs.python.org/issue8990)

I'm not sure that the array.array.fromstring() ever parsed the data string
as text, did it?

Anyway, This is what array.array now has:

Appends items from the string, interpreting the string as an array of
machine values (as if it had been read from a file using the
New in version 3.2: fromstring() is renamed to frombytes() for clarity.

array.fromfile(f, n)

Read n items (as machine values) from the file object f and append them to
the end of the array. If less than n items are available, EOFError is
raised, but the items that were available are still inserted into the
array. f must be a real built-in file object; something else with a read()
method won’t do.


Deprecated alias for frombytes().

I think numpy should do the same.And frombytes() should remove the "sep"
parameter. If someone wants to write a fast efficient simple text parser,
then it should get a new name: fromtext() maybe???And the fromfile() sep
argument should be deprecated as well, for the same reasons.array also has:


Extends this array with data from the given unicode string. The array must
be a type 'u' array; otherwise a ValueError is raised.
Usearray.frombytes(unicodestring.encode(enc)) to append Unicode data to an
array of some other type.

which I think would be better supported by:np.frombytes(str.encode('UCS-4'),


Christopher Barker, Ph.D.

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Chris.Barker at noaa.gov
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