NumPy and Octave (qestion and discussion)

Konrad Hinsen hinsen at cnrs-orleans.fr
Mon May 29 11:52:24 CEST 2000


hzhu at rocket.knowledgetrack.com (Huaiyu Zhu) writes:

> However, linear algebra is not just another application domain.  It is one
> of the foundations of numerical computation.  It would be a pity that it
> could not be expressed efficiently in an otherwise almost perfect language.

It is perfectly possible to implement linear algebra classes on top of
NumPy. For some reason, nobody has done it yet. I use linear algebra a
lot myself, but I haven't really missed linear algebra style matrix
operations in Python. I always end up implementing problem-specific
classes that use NumPy internally. Of course this approach might not
suit other applications.

Anyway, implementing basic matrix and vector classes should be an
afternoon job. Perhaps many people have written some and not considered
them worth publishing!

> So my point is that perhaps the importance of numerical computation warrant
> an (expressional) syntax that's more convenient.  I think this can be done
> without conflict with python's general syntax.  It just need to be different
> from NumPy's special choices.

The only limits are those imposed by Python. For example, you can't use
square bracket notation for arrays because they are already used for lists.
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