Goodbye Theano

September 29, 2017

It’s a sad day for us Theano fans. The developers of Theano have announced that they are halting development following the 1.0 release.

Here’s the original post: https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/theano-users/7Poq8BZutbY

Dear users and developers,

After almost ten years of development, we have the regret to announce
that we will put an end to our Theano development after the 1.0 release,
which is due in the next few weeks. We will continue minimal maintenance
to keep it working for one year, but we will stop actively implementing
new features. Theano will continue to be available afterwards, as per
our engagement towards open source software, but MILA does not commit to
spend time on maintenance or support after that time frame.

The software ecosystem supporting deep learning research has been
evolving quickly, and has now reached a healthy state: open-source
software is the norm; a variety of frameworks are available, satisfying
needs spanning from exploring novel ideas to deploying them into
production; and strong industrial players are backing different software
stacks in a stimulating competition.

We are proud that most of the innovations Theano introduced across the
years have now been adopted and perfected by other frameworks. Being
able to express models as mathematical expressions, rewriting
computation graphs for better performance and memory usage, transparent
execution on GPU, higher-order automatic differentiation, for instance,
have all become mainstream ideas.

In that context, we came to the conclusion that supporting Theano is no
longer the best way we can enable the emergence and application of novel
research ideas. Even with the increasing support of external
contributions from industry and academia, maintaining an older code base
and keeping up with competitors has come in the way of innovation.

MILA is still committed to supporting researchers and enabling the
implementation and exploration of innovative (and sometimes wild)
research ideas, and we will keep working towards this goal through other
means, and making significant open source contributions to other projects.

Thanks to all of you who for helping develop Theano, and making it
better by contributing bug reports, profiles, use cases, documentation,
and support.

— Yoshua Bengio,
Head of MILA

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