Why Python for this Course?#
With all that said, I have chosen to use Python in this course, for a few reasons. Firstly, it is widely used in neuroscience and data science more generally, so it should serve you well in the future. Secondly, it is a well-designed language, with syntax and structure that I find much easier to understand and use than R or MATLAB. Thirdly (and directly related to the second point), it is the language I am most familiar with, and feel most comfortable teaching. Finally, it is an open-source language, meaning that it is free to obtain and use. This is also true of R, and indeed most widely-used programming languages, but MATLAB is closed-source: it is developed and sold by The Mathworks, a private company. While Dalhousie University pays for a site license that allows all students and staff to use it, this is still a potential limitation for you in the future, and violates one of the core principles of this class, which is to use and promote open-source tools and resources.