Introducing ReviewNB: Visual Diff for Jupyter Notebooks

I’m excited to announce ReviewNB, a tool that helps in version controlling Jupyter Notebooks. I have been working on this for the past few months and pretty happy with how it turned out.


Jupyter is great for data exploration but it’s hard to go beyond that & do any kind of collaborative work with it. Specifically, there are some challenges in using Jupyter Notebooks with modern version control system like Git:

  • Notebook diffs are hard to read. Hence we can’t do code reviews on GitHub
  • Merging in remote changes is hard due to JSON format of Notebook files (.ipynb)
  • No easy way to share feedback & have a discussion around Notebooks
  • It’s not easy to reproduce Notebook environment & play with Notebooks shared by others

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Challenges with Jupyter Notebook

A lot of people, including me, love Jupyter Notebooks. It’s a fantastic tool for data science. Today I’m not going to talk about it’s amazing capabilities but rather how it fails at two important things: Version Control and Reproducibility. I will also outline the current state-of-the-art to solve these problems. It’s a useful read if you are a Jupyter user. Let’s jump right in.

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