How to open IPython Notebook file

The .ipynb file is an IPython Notebook file containing the Python commands, output and notes that another user has recorded.

To be able to create or open this file, we need to install IPython and its notebook package:

$ sudo apt install ipython-notebook

After installation, it is invoked as:

$ ipython notebook

This open a Mathematica-like web interface in your browser. You can create new IPython Notebook files or open existing files for viewing.

On a recent IPython Notebook file, I got this error when I opened it:

Error loading notebook
Unreadable Notebook: Unsupported JSON nbformat version 4 (supported version: 3)

This means that a more recent version of notebook package needs to be used to open this file. More confusingly, the notebook package has been moved into a new project called Jupyter. Since this is a new development its package was not available on my ancient Ubuntu.

I installed it from PyPI using:

$ sudo pip3 install jupyter

To open its notebook web interface:

$ jupyter-notebook

I was able to open the problematic IPython Notebook file correctly using this.

Tried with: Jupyter 4.x and Ubuntu 14.04

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IPython Notebook error: Unsupported JSON nbformat

20150701_ipython_error

Problem

I ran the IPython Notebook server in a directory containing a .ipynb notebook file:

$ ipython notebook

It opened the URL http://127.0.0.1:8888 in my browser. The notebook file was listed in the webpage. I clicked it to load it and got this error:

Error loading notebook

Unreadable Notebook: Unsupported JSON
nbformat version 4 (supported version: 3)

Solution

This error is caused due to opening a notebook created with a newer IPython on a computer with an older IPython. On my computer, I was using IPython installed from Ubuntu repositories, which is ancient.

I first uninstalled it:

$ sudo apt remove ipython

I installed the latest IPython from the Python Package Index:

$ sudo pip install ipython

The installation was successful, but on running IPython it complained about many other programs. I installed the libraries it complained about:

$ sudo apt install python-zmq python-jinja2 python-jsonschema

IPython Notebook ran correctly and I was able to open the notebook after this! 🙂

Tried with: IPython 3.2 and Ubuntu 14.04

Aftershock XG15-V2 gaming notebook

Aftershock XG15-V3 which looks similar to XG15-V2
Aftershock XG15-V3 which looks similar to XG15-V2

Aftershock makes custom gaming notebooks in Singapore. I had the chance to use one of these notebooks, a XG15-V2 recently. This post has some of the specifications and my opinion about this notebook.

Technical Specifications

  • Intel i7-4700MQ
  • NVIDIA Geforce GTX 765M with 2GB VRAM
  • 24GB RAM
  • 750GB HDD
  • 1920×1080 display

Pros

  • Ubuntu 14.04 installed and works for the most part without any problems.
  • The color gamut of the display is gorgeous. Its a joy to view colorful photos and webpages on it.

Cons

  • Glossy display. Reflects everything like a mirror. This is quite distracting.
  • Huge boxy chassis.
  • Horrible trackpad. I disable it using Fn + F1 the moment I login and use a mouse instead.
  • Even though this is an Optimus notebook, it cannot last long on battery.
  • Fans keep running all the time.

Details

  • Motherboard is listed in BIOS and by CPU-Z as w35xstq_370st. It is manufactured by Clevo.
  • Actually this entire notebook is designed and sold around the world as Clevo W355ST. The motherboard is also referred to generically as W355ST. This can be seen in the sticker at the bottom of the notebook.
  • BIOS is by American MegaTrends and is shown on bootup as Aptio 2.15.1236. However, Windows and CPU-Z list it as 4.6.5 (11/13/2013).

Use

  • Webcam: The integrated webcam is off by default under Ubuntu. To use it it first needs to be turned on by pressing Fn + F10. You can then check if it’s working by using Cheese.