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Project Jupyter Announces Updates to JupyterLab Desktop, JupyterCon 2023

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The folks at Project Jupyter have announced a major update to the JupyterLab Desktop.

JupyterLab Desktop is the cross-platform desktop application for JupyterLab, a web-based interactive development environment for notebooks, code, and data. Project Jupyter says this v3.6.1-1 update adds many new features with a main focus on the user experience.

One new feature is a welcome page at the launch of the app that contains a Jupyter news feed populated with blog posts and news and events items. There are also links to session create options: “With this release, we are introducing the concept of sessions and projects. Sessions are representations of local project launches and connections to existing JupyterLab servers. Each JupyterLab UI window in the app is associated with a separate session and sessions can be restored with the same configuration at the next launch,” wrote Mehmet Bektas, a senior software engineer at Netflix and Jupyter distinguished contributor, in a blog announcement.

The new JupyterLab Desktop welcome page. (Source: Project Jupyter)

Each time a user launches JupyterLab in a different working directory, a separate project is created that can have its own configurations for elements such as Python environment and UI layout. Work can be separated into different projects with their own notebook files and configurations, based on project tasks and dependency libraries. The welcome page now offers launch options including creating a new notebook, opening files or folders directly from UI, or dragging and dropping files or folders directly onto the welcome page to be opened in a new session.

Users can now open multiple projects in different session windows side by side with the addition of support for multiple session windows. Additionally, there is an option in the startup mode configurations, “restore last sessions” that restores session windows at the next launch in their previous positions from the last session.

At launch, the program now automatically discovers compatible Python environments pre-installed on a user’s computer. These can be seen on the Python environment selector menu on the server status button found on the title bar. Users can also browse or enter the path of a Python executable using this menu to set the Python environment, and once selected, the JupyterLab server will restart using the new environment without restarting the application.

Other updates include security and privacy enhancements, improvements to logging and troubleshooting features, and bug fixes. There are also configuration improvements, as JupyterLab Desktop now stores user settings, project settings, and application data in separate JSON files. The user settings file contains application settings such as the default Python path and theme, and these can be configured from the Settings dialogue in the application UI. Read more about the latest updates in this blog post, or try the latest JupyterLab Desktop here.

(Source: Project Jupyter)

For the true Jupyter enthusiasts, JupyterCon 2023 will be held May 10-12 at the City of Science and Industry, a large science museum complex in Paris. The three-day event will feature talks, tutorials, and community events. Keynote speakers include Alyssa Goodman, professor of astronomy at Harvard University, Nobel laureate economist Paul Romer, and Craig Peters and Cory Gwin from GitHub. Topics discussed will include reproducible research and open science, Jupyter integrations with other software, data visualization, Jupyter subprojects, and more. The final schedule will be released soon. Learn more about the event at this link.

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