Instructors: Michael Selik, Neal Davis
What: Our goal is to help scientists and engineers become more productive by teaching them basic computing skills like program design, version control, testing, and task automation. In this two-day bootcamp, short tutorials will alternate with hands-on practical exercises. Participants will be encouraged both to help one another, and to apply what they have learned to their own research problems during and between sessions. Attendants are offered online office hours: regular events to get one-on-one help from Software Carpentry instructors, online.
Who: The course is aimed at postgraduate students and other scientists who are familiar with basic programming concepts (like loops, conditionals, arrays, and functions) but need help to translate this knowledge into practical tools to help them work more productively.
Requirements: Participants must bring a laptop with a few specific software packages installed. (The list will be sent to participants a week before the bootcamp.)
Content: The syllabus for this bootcamp will include:
Contact: Please mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Subject to Change
|8:30 - 8:45||Setup Help|
|8:45 - 9:00||Introduction|
|9:00 - 10:30||The Shell|
|10:30 - 12:00||Python Variables|
|12:00 - 1:00||Lunch|
|1:00 - 2:30||Python Data Structures|
|2:30 - 4:30||Python Flow Control|
|9:00 - 10:30||Python Functions and Modules|
|10:30 - 12:00||Data processing example with the shell and Python|
|12:00 - 1:00||Lunch|
|1:00 - 4:30||Introduction to Version Control with Git|
Bash is a commonly-used shell. Using a shell gives you more power to do more tasks more quickly with your computer.
The default shell in all versions of Mac OS X is bash,
so no need to install anything. You access bash from
the Terminal (found
/Applications/Utilities). You may want
to keep Terminal in your dock for this workshop.
The default shell is usually
but if your machine is set up differently
you can run it by opening a terminal and typing
There is no need to install anything.
When you're writing code, it's nice to have a text editor that is optimized for writing code, with features like automatic color-coding of key words.
Notepad++ is a popular free code editor for Windows.
Kate is one option for Linux users.
Git is a state-of-the-art version control system. It lets you track who made changes to what when and has options for easily updating a shared or public version of your code on github.com.
Installing Git may require you to first install XCode. This is a very large download (several gigabytes), so please do it before arriving at the bootcamp.
Go to the Xcode website. Get XCode from the App Store making certain to install the command line tools (from the Download preferences pane). Git is included in the command line tools.
If you have Mac OS X 10.6,
first get XCode by going to
the Apple developer site.
You have to sign in with an Apple ID linked to a Developer account.
If you don't have one,
you can register and create one.
Once you log in,
go to page 8 and find "XCode 3.2.6 and iOS SDK 4.3 for Snow Leopard".
Click to open that section,
and then download the
install just git.
If Git is not already available on your machine you can try
to install it via your distro's package manager
Python is becoming more and more popular in scientific computing, and it's a great language for teaching general programming concepts due to its easy-to-read syntax. We will be using Python version 2.7. Installing all the scientific packages for Python individually can be a bit difficult, so we recommend using an all-in-one installer.