Python/PyMC Setup

Here are some notes on getting and learning Python.


For Windows: The Enthought Python Distribution is free for “educational users at degree-granting institutions”. It includes numpy, scipy, and matplotlib. Go to the Enthought Download Page and get it if you are eligible. Install it by double-clicking and then clicking ‘Ok’ until it stops asking for approval. Then download and install the PyMC windows installer from the PyMC Downloads Page. Alternative approach: get packages you need individually here.

For Ubuntu or Debian: Type the following into a terminal:

sudo apt-get install ipython python-setuptools python-dev python-nose python-tk python-numpy python-matplotlib python-scipy python-networkx gfortran libatlas-base-dev
sudo easy_install pymc


Type ipython --pylab to start interactive python, or find the icon in the start menu. To make PyMC run its self-tests, do this:

import numpy
import pymc

Hmm, my PyMC doesn’t have any tests…



To quickly get going in Python read this and this:

If you have used Matlab before then skim this:

Other resources:

8 responses to “Python/PyMC Setup

  1. Kyle

    Other resources that I’ve found useful:

    SciPy 2010 intro tutorial slides:

    A Primer on Scientific Programming with Python:
    Slides (the page is in Norwegian, but the slides aka ‘foils’ are in English):

  2. Python and a number of other wonderful things for scientists to know about software engineering:

  3. I tried the instructions you gave for pymc installation, and easy_install failed with “No module named numpy.distutils.misc_util”. But when I tried pip, it worked fine.

  4. Thanks for this fix, Gary. Scientific python packaging has shifted since I wrote these notes. I think pip is generally preferred to easy_install now. Also, I’ve had great results with anaconda lately.

  5. To install on 64-bit windows 8.1, I’ve had success with this:

  6. Adsense is actually a really great program for those who maintain blogs, as
    blogs get updated all the time and the Adsense possibilities are almost limitless.
    In addition, the observing surgeons could transmit their
    comments to the operating surgeon, who could read them on the Google Glass monitor.

    But it seems Memorial Day wasn’t important enough to

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s