First posted: June 14, 2009 (Father's Day)
Last Modified: June 14, 2009

Arthur Siegel loved playing the role of argumentative New York Jew, so don't get after me for branding him that way as he exulted in exhibiting his edgy style.

Count me a fan, as I learned a lot from his colorful and direct way of taking me on, other comers, while at the same time walking his talk, big time, by creating Pygeo.

I met Arthur in the financial sector of New York City one time for beers, missed him on a next pass, then missed him again when tragedy struck. My wife suddenly had stage three breast cancer diagnosis, out of the blue (IBC is sneaky that way) and I was on the plane home from Washington DC. Arthur and Steve accepted my regrets (Dawn and I attended Pycon the next year, but Arthur didn't).

Finally, I got to meet Arthur with David Lansky and his two boys, again in uptown Manhatten. We had some wonderful conversation and my admiration for Arthur only increased. I was shocked and saddened by his unexpected demise.

For a sense of Arthur and his views, I recommend reading the edu-sig archive within the Python community via He believed in "hard fun", making the connection to sports, and he didn't think computer geeks should settle for a too sedentary lifestyle, especially when still enjoying young, growing bodies. Mathematics is an outdoor sport, as well as an indoor sport, might somewhat suggest his attitude (which I share, especially given our GIS/GPS curriculum components).

However, even more than that, Pygeo is worthy of attention, as he had a lot of ideas about source code. He was self taught, considered that a plus, not only in Python, but in Projective Geometry. He admired Klein a whole lot. He put a lot of work into the source code, which should always run if you do the work to collect the right versions of Python & Numeric, also VPython.

Arthur was a proud dad and I'm thinking of him and his son on this Father's Day, as well as myself and David. We fathers need to support one another, now and in the hereafter. My thanks to Jack Urner, for being a fantastic dad.

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