Introduction and MotivationΒΆ


Practical Python for Astronomers is a series of hands-on workshops to explore the Python language and the powerful analysis tools it provides. The emphasis is on using Python to solve real-world problems that astronomers are likely to encounter in research.

  • The workshops will immediately make use of the full suite of plotting, analysis, and file reading tools.
  • Along the way elements of the Python language such as control structures, functions, and objects will be introduced as needed.
  • This will be a hands-on experience largely focused on interactive data analysis using tutorial examples that you type or cut-n-paste into the Python interpreter.
  • Participants should bring a laptop to each session or partner-up with someone who has a laptop.


The purpose of the talk today is to motivate astronomers to learn Python and start using it as a tool for research and analysis.

Author:Tom Aldcroft
Copyright:2011 Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory