Earlier this year, Nature published an overview of 10 codes that have transformed science. Among the ten were Jupyter, of which senior research engineer Benjamin Ragan-Kelley has been a key contributor.
Created in 2001 as IPython by physicist Fernando Pérez, the Jupyter project focuses on the interactive, iterative parts of research connected to data exploring. In 2011, Perez was joined by Brian Granger to lead the work in creating what would become the Jupyter notebook - a web-based interactive computing environment and shareable document format. Jupyter allows anyone to run a bit of code and see the results immediately, facilitating iteration and exploration. This is valuable in both research and education, as it can be a time-intensive process to figure out what code to run.
Jupyter notebooks are sharable, interactive documents that contain the source code, rich text and images explaining what the code does, and representations of the results so anyone can see what figures and results the code produces without having to re-execute themselves. Codes are available to be shared online via nbviewer so that anyone with a web browser can see them.
From 2011-2015 Ragan-Kelley was one of the largest contributors to IPython and Jupyter. Since then, Ragan-Kelley has started IPython parallel, where the Jupyter protocol originated and JupyterHub. The latter helps researchers deploy Jupyter for classes and research groups, and Ragan-Kelley is the project's lead.
Ragan-Kelley is a senior research engineer and head of the Numerical Analysis and Scientific Computing department at Simula Research Laboratory.