Python advocacy in scientific computation

Evan Monroig evan.monroig at
Mon Mar 6 00:55:10 CET 2006

> First there are a few things I don't like:

Hi, I will respond to things that others haven't responded yet

> 2. How good is matplotlib/pylab? I tried to install it but only get
> error messages so I haven't tested it. But plotting capabilities is
> really major issue.

I don't know because I haven't managed to get it working either. But
other people have and I guess it should not be so difficult.

I personally use gnuplot-py ( which I adapted
to the new NumPy/SciPy (see below) by searching-and-replacing "Numeric"
by "numpy". It allows to use raw gnuplot commands.

> 4. Are there "easy to use" libraries containing other stuff important
> for scientific programs, e.q. linear algebra (LU, SVD, Cholesky),
> Fourier transforms, etc. E.g. in Matlab I can just type,
>    [u,s,v] = svd(x) % which calls LAPACK linked to ATLAS or
> vendor-optimized BLAS

Yes !

There is the excellent SciPy package, which you can get at

Personnally I use it a lot for linear algebra (linked to
LAPACK/ATLAS/BLAS), but there are also libraries for statistics,
optimization, signal processing, etc.

There has been many changes recently, including package names, so don't
get confused and be sure to get recent versions of NumPy and SciPy ;).


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