Python for climate scientists

Why python?

Note, a more up-to-date version of this page is available here.

Bryan Lawrence blog article: The choice is python
Bryan argues why he thinks python is the best choice for BADC, and the similar considerations apply generally to atmospheric science.

Ray Pierrehumbert's python introduction, very to-the-point and clear.
It is supplementary material to his textbook, but is of general use to someone starting to use python.

An astronomer's pros/cons list for IDL vs python. A little out of date now, but perhaps still useful.

Lists of IDL-to-python function equivalents.

Will's Code Academy link

A rough list of the python climate packages, which it seems are (roughly in order of what I gather to be their sophistication, though this is a bit of a guess):

cdat/cdms (developed at US DOE)
iris (developed at Met Office)
pynio (the IO component of the NCAR stuff - handles nc files etc)
jasmin-cis (the one Philip Stier's group is involved in)
pygeode (stalled?)
pyclimate (seems no longer updated)

And then for plotting specifically:

GRADS interface to python

(Of course cdat, iris,... contain plotting packages as part of the overall deal, but here I'm listing plotting packages specifically.)