Announcing: PerlGSL - A Collection of Perlish Interfaces to the Gnu Scientific Library
With this post I am happy to announce the release of my new distribution:
PerlGSL. This accompanies several other releases I’ve made in the past few days, I’ll get to those in a moment.
A few days ago I asked what I should call my new multidimensional integration module. The discussion centered on whether it was more important that it required the GSL library, or whether it was a set of bindings for the GSL (was that set complete)? Was it a dist in its own right needing a toplevel name, or that it was mathematical and should be under
After discussion and reflection, I have decided that I wanted a toplevel namespce for this project, mostly because the need to satisfy the external dependency on the GSL separates these modules from others. To make it worthy of that honor, I have made it into a dist in its own right, not unlike other named dists like Mojolicious or Catalyst, though more modular.
Unlike those projects I am not reserving the entire namespace for myself; I want people to contribute to the
PerlGSL namespace. Is it a set of bindings to the GSL? No, but close. I’m calling the namespace a ‘collection of interfaces’. Can there can be more than one interface to the same library? I’m OK with that. Does any need to span an entire library? No. Can a library pull several functions from different places to create one useful Perl module? By all means!
So what does the dist named
PerlGSL do? First it serves to define the namespace. Second, if you install it, it will install what I am calling the “standard modules”. So far I am the only author of these “standard” modules, but I would love to add yours, though I reserve the right no to. I want the individual modules to live on their own, but be installable together; a modular, bottom-up collection, but one that can be installed together for convenience.
PDL, for example, is a great dist, but it’s huge and mostly monolithic; I can’t just install what I need. I hope that
PerlGSL finds a nice balance between monolithic and separate dists.
Ok on to the technical stuff. So far I have uploaded two new modules, and rechristened another. The new ones are
PerlGSL::Integration::MultiDim, I think their names give away their tasks :-). I have rechristened
PerlGSL::DiffEq. These are all part of the “standard” modules, though you only get
PerlGSL::DiffEq if you have GSL >= 1.15. I have also released a new version of
Math::GSLx::ODEIV2 which announces its deprecation, though it does still provide the
ode_solver function via
PerlGSL::DiffEq for now.
I hope to add more functionality as I need them. I hope you might do the same. The GSL is too big to ask one person to wrap it all; very few people will ever need all of it. It is really good software though, and it works really well with Perl. I hope you enjoy it.
(Sorry, this has been a bit stream of consciousness, I have been working on this a little too much in the past few days to compose something concise it would seem.)