An Oral History of Bank Python

Disregarding the fact that this is a written history, I found Cal Paterson’s essay fascinating. It could be that the biggest disadvantage is professional. Every year you spend in the Minerva monoculture the skills you need interact with normal software atrophy. By the time I left I had pretty much forgotten how to wrestle pip and virtualenv into shape (essential skills for normal Python). I’ve known people that worked in COBOL for the baking industry but I had no idea that a private Python branch was replacing it.

A Couple New Python Tricks

It’s a slow week around here while I attend to some new projects. But these two python links are just too good to not share. First up is the announcement of a new O’Reily book about Excel automation with open source python. I don’t buy many O’Reily books these days but since I can get a PDF version I’m all in on this one. So much data is stored and used in Excel that it’s a no-brainer to get better at using it.

Jupyter Notebooks at Netflix

I love this Netflix blog post about how they use Jupyter notebooks. I’m not an programmer but I do play one at work and I’m partial to using notebooks when I explore. Part of my day job is to develop the system architecture for a long term engineering effort. I fire up a notebook and start playing with AWS micro services. My notes end up with the various cases I test, some notes, some sample data and results.

Replacing TapCellar with Text Files

This is a long and tedious post. It’s not really about beer, rather it’s about: Text files Note taking Python scripting DEVONthink Keyboard Maestro Beer Ok. It’s a little bit about beer. Let’s start this story already… I miss TapCellar, the iOS beer tracking app I helped make. It was my favorite app. But, we killed it because we are not idiots with bottomless bank accounts and free time.

Agate for Data Analysis

Agate looks like a really great data analysis library for Python. It’s readable and powerful. Made by a journalist for journalists. As journalists, we not only need to solve these problems for practical reporting purposes, but also for philosophical ones. How can we assert that our numbers are correct if we performed a series of manual processes in a spreadsheet exactly once? Do it that way and the only record of how it was done is the one in your head.

Pelican 3.6 Released Link

You may not know it, but this site runs on little blogging engine named Pelican. I like it. Version 3.6 is out now and has a lot of improvements. I really need to update but that’s one of the reasons I like Pelican. It just keeps working without messing with it. I would like the article caching but I never care about how long it takes for the site to build.

Color Scales in Python Link

What a fun Python module and set of examples. As the name implies, it generates color scales but the neat trick is that it outputs HTML for viewing the colors. Here’s a more extensive look at what it can do.

Beer and Soup

This is what it’s like to be a nerd. As a computer-geek, my friends tend to think I have a lot of “answers” about computers. In reality, I spend more time making up problems than I do solving them. For some unknown reason I decided I wanted to extract all of the beer style data from BreweryDB and create a nice portable concept map I could use in iThoughts. As this pointless project unfolded, so did the scope.

Paramiko Install Reminder

Just a quick reminder for nerds that installed Yosemite. You probably need to reinstall a bunch of Python modules. If you use Paramiko, then you should also install the XCode command line tools first. You can install Paramiko and the dependent Crypto library manually, or through Easy_Install. Anyway, it’s nice to have my Hazel scripts running again.