JupyterLab Beta Release… and Binder!

Dan Strong
2 min readFeb 21, 2018

I posted in December about JupyterLab, which was then in alpha preview. It has now been released in beta and I’m excited to put it to use for everything I do using Python. Check out the installation process and features in my previous post.

JupyterLab is available on Binder, which is also in beta. Binder allows you to “turn a Github repo into a collection of interactive notebooks.” I just recently discovered Binder, which appears to be a solution to many of my woes getting Jupyter Notebooks to work without a local installation of Anaconda. Although there are several existing web-based notebook environments, this is the most seamless solution I’ve seen and appears to be a great way to share notebooks.

Binder takes a Github repo containing Jupyter (or JupyterLab) notebooks and uses Docker to build an image of your repo which will be hosted on JupyterHub. Dependencies are detected by Docker and built into the Docker image. New commits will be detected by Binder and rebuilt into the existing image.

There are already a ton of great Binder examples on Github. I’m going to start using Binder as much as possible for my existing data analysis repositories, to make development and sharing easier. Keep in mind that both JupyterLab and Binder are still in beta. I’ve added links below if you’d like to contribute to these projects.

Useful Links

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Dan Strong

Research analyst with an interest in Python for data analysis and Ruby for web development