[Tutor] Introduction to modelling with Python

AG computing.account at googlemail.com
Wed Apr 7 11:38:07 CEST 2010

Eike Welk wrote:
> On Saturday March 27 2010 16:21:26 AG wrote:
>> I apologise in advance for the vagueness of this query, but I am looking
>> for a decent modern introduction to modelling using Python.
>> Specifically, I want something that is a good introduction (i.e. doesn't
>> expect one to already be a maths/ statistics or a programming guru) and
>> that has an ecology/ environmental science orientation. 
> You should look at the book "Python Scripting for Computational Science" by 
> Hans Petter Langtangen:
> http://www.amazon.com/Python-Scripting-Computational-Science-
> Engineering/dp/3540435085
> http://books.google.com/books?id=YEoiYr4H2A0C&printsec=frontcover&dq="Python+Scripting+for+Computational+Science"&source=bl&ots=ovp_JKREiY&sig=tJkigCLDqS6voOOjmL4xDxw0roM&hl=en&ei=OlWvS8PmE4r94Aa42vzgDw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CBEQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=&f=false
> It is an introduction to the Python language, and to a big number of tools for 
> numerical computations. The book assumes that you have already some practice 
> in writing computer programs. 
> The book is not oriented towards ecology, the examples are from mechanical 
> engineering. 
> The book is however a bit dated, it's from 2004. Therefore many examples will 
> need to be slightly altered to work with the current versions of the libraries 
> that they use. 
> Alternatively you could ask your question on the Numpy/Scipy mailing lists. 
> These lists are frequented by scientists that use Python for their 
> computations.  
> http://www.scipy.org/Mailing_Lists
> Eike.
> _______________________________________________


I just wanted to come back to you on the book recommendation you made 
"Python scripting for computational science" - I tracked down a cheapish 
copy of the 3rd edition from 2009 and flipping through it (it only 
arrived yesterday), it seems like it is going to be very useful.  
Certainly it draws a lot on numpy, goes into using Tcl for GUIs, and a 
number of recipes for scripting, regular expressions and so on ... lots 
to get my head around.  With respect to my original question then, 
equipped with this book you recommended, a book on differential 
equations, and one on an intro to environmental modelling, that should 
give me enough to work on for the time being.

So, just wanted to close the circle by letting you know that I took your 
recommendation, and it looks like it will pay off in time.

Thank you.

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