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Getting started with Python/Numpy/SciPy

Follow the instructions here: For now you can disregard the sections on Shell and Git, just focusing on Python and an Editor

A short summary of these instructions:

1. You'll need to install Python on your machine. We recommend the Anaconda python distribution:

During installation, make Anaconda your default Python installation (unless you have some reason not to do this).

2. You'll need a text editor to write Python in. Any text editor will work, but there are ones that highlight Python keywords which is handy, such as Text Wrangler or Sublime Text.

First steps

Once Python is installed, you're ready to get started! Open up a command line prompt (e.g. Command Prompt on Windows, Terminal on OS X) and type


to start an interactive Python shell. You can begin entering Python commands and manipulating variables immediately.

If you have no prior programming experience, I recommend you work through a Python tutorial using ipython: as you read, run the commands and get a feel for what's happening.

Beginner Guide

Intermediate Guide

Additional Resources

Homework #1

Download square.mat