The Python Community

· by Jo Hardin · Read in about 4 min · (693 words) ·

All week we’ve been celebrating using Python in data science. There is no question that Python is a fantastic and very powerful language. Additionally, it is typically thought of as clearly the most used language for doing data science. The kaggle 2017 survey reports that more than three-quarters of data scientists use Python (although they also mention that most statisticians use R).


Knowing how to use Python is an important first step to engaging with the software. But it is also vitally important to recognize the strong and active community of Python users. For people trying to break into the Python community, we’ve listed some important groups and conferences below. Don’t be afraid to jump in with both feet: go to a Python meet-up, read a Python blog, and try a new function or two!


  • Available libraries: PyPI is the place to go for Python packages, boasting more than 186,000 projects.

  • Jupyter notebooks are to Python what Markdown files are to R. JupyterHub brings the power of Jupyter notebooks to the cloud, providing access to computational environments and resources without installation.


  • As a data scientist using Python, the Scientific Stack is indispensable. Jupyter is one piece, but NumPy (numerical computation), pandas (data frames, wrangling, etc.), scikit-learn (robust machine learning), and matplotlib (visualization) make up the rest of the core structure for data scientists. As a general-purpose language, Python is dependent on third-party packages when it comes to data science applications.


  • PyCon is the big Python conference of the year. PyCon includes talks, events, workshops, and tutorials. During the main conference days, there are dozens of talks and an exposition hall with sponsors and vendors. PyCon also hosts a job fair for those looking for a job or an employee. See the PyCon 2019 site for the best of last year. Stay tuned for PyCon 2020 in Pittsburgh, PA April 15-23, 2020

  • Scientific Computing with Python, SciPy2019, has unfortunately already passed for 2019, but stay tuned for SciPy 2020 in Austin, TX (July 6-12) for a fantastic event which is heavily data science oriented.

  • Many local conferences including:

  • Python conference focused on users and developers of data analysis tools: PyData


Python Outreach

PyLadies is an international mentorship group with a focus on helping more women become active participants and leaders in the Python open-source community.


Learn more

About this blog

Each day during the summer of 2019 we intend to add a new entry to this blog on a given topic of interest to educators teaching data science and statistics courses. Each entry is intended to provide a short overview of why it is interesting and how it can be applied to teaching. We anticipate that these introductory pieces can be digested daily in 20 or 30 minute chunks that will leave you in a position to decide whether to explore more or integrate the material into your own classes. By following along for the summer, we hope that you will develop a clearer sense for the fast moving landscape of data science. Sign up for emails at!forum/teach-data-science (you must be logged into Google to sign up).

We always welcome comments on entries and suggestions for new ones.