[GRASS-user] What's the point with Grass/Python SWIG interface?

G. Allegri giohappy at gmail.com
Mon Aug 27 08:52:11 EDT 2007

Thanks Hamish.
My desire was to make some benchmarking between different solutions...
I know Grass C low level modules do a lot of work, but as I'm not an
experienced C programmer, I would prefer to do the same job (beyond
scripting) with Python.
A good reason, to me, to consider a SWIG solution is the possibility to make
direct use of the huge quantity of Python packages available (as NumPy,
wxPython, etc.), without loosing low level access to the Grass API.
As you said, without the SWIG API, the most I can do is making system calls
("os.popen") to run Grass bash commands, with an unacceptable slowness and
the obvious limitations it puts.
I think that the only solution is to start learning SWIG interface
development by myself :-)


2007/8/27, Hamish <hamish_nospam at yahoo.com>:
> G. Allegri wrote:
> >
> > does anyone can make the point about Grass/Python SWIG interface
> > development? I've seen in May the last changes on SVN made by Markus
> > Neteler. Is the interface somehow ready to be used? Is there a roadmap
> in
> > the development?
> Yes, it works, at a prototype stage. ie it may be rough around the edges
> but basically works - it's at a stage where it needs testers & feedback
> reports.
> see
> http://grass.gdf-hannover.de/wiki/GRASS_and_Python#Python-SWIG-GRASS_interface
> http://mpa.itc.it/markus/grass63progman/swig/
> http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.comp.gis.grass.devel/20751
> src/swig/python/README
> src/swig/python/TODO
> src/swig/python/test.py
> src/swig/python/rasteraccess.py
> src/swig/python/vectoraccess.py
> the subject of your email ("What's the point"?) touches on the reason I
> personally haven't worked on python/swig further than getting it running-
> even though I'd like to learn more python. To date I haven't been able to
> think of a time when I'd want to use it over writing a module directly in
> C or scripting compiled modules in python without SWIG (as a replacement
> for bash scripting). The low level grass modules give you a lot of
> control, so direct access to the C libgis functions isn't all that
> critical.
> good luck,
> Hamish
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