Resources for scientific computing

Some essential things for the computational astrophysicist
  • Operating system:
    • your favorite Linux distro (I prefer the lightweight Xubuntu variant of Ubuntu). If you need Windows, you can run a Linux VM on top of Windows using VirtualBox
  • Programming languages:
    • Python with numpy, scipy, pandas, astropy and matplotlib for analysis (Anaconda wraps everything up nicely for scientific use)
    • C/Fortran for heavy computation (Intel’s Fortran compiler is free for students)
    • LaTeX for writing papers (I use the MiKTeX package manager)
  • IDEs:
  • Version control:  git with Github (edu account for students) or Bitbucket (signup with and .edu address for academic account)
  • Literature:
  • Miscellaneous:
  • Optional stuff:
    • Coffee: aeropress, french press, drip, burr grinder, good beans
    • Computer: mechanical keyboard, big montiors
    • Music: some nice headphones and chill downtempo jazz or thumping electro, depending on whether you have a deadline or not

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