Category Archives: python

python and the Anaconda repository

I tend to use the Anaconda Python distribution, it makes life a little easier by including all the data science packages I like to use (NumPy, SciPy, matplotlib, pandas, Jupyter Notebook and scikit-learn). While I predominantly use Linux Anaconda apparently makes life a lot easier in a Windows or Mac environment.

The package manage for Anaconda is conda (command line) and there is now a GUI interface available (called anaconda-navigator). To run the navigator type anaconda-navigator at the command line.

to check if conda is installed (or which version):

conda –version

conda info

to update Anaconda to the latest version:

conda update conda

The installation of Anaconda adds a new path to the beginning of the environment variable PATH ensuring that anaconda bin will be utilised before the standard python bin.






Investigations into Jupyter

I’ve been investigating Jupyter Notebook (previously called ipython). It’s an interactive environment in which you can embed code, add text, equations and plots. It would be a great tool to use for teaching (and that is the context in which I cam to hear of it). Students can play with examples, modify them, write their own adding text and equations where they want.

While designed for interactive python apparently you can also load other languages including R, Julia and Octave (though I’ve yet to successfully do this) and notebooks can be exported to Latex, pdf or html.

Further reading:

Tony Hirst

Trying out Jupyter Notebooks