Boost C++ Libraries of the most highly regarded and expertly designed C++ library projects in the world. Herb Sutter and Andrei Alexandrescu, C++ Coding Standards

This is the documentation for a snapshot of the develop branch, built from commit c5994560ca.

C++ Boost


How to access data using raw pointers

One of the advantages of the ndarray wrapper is that the same data can be used in both Python and C++ and changes can be made to reflect at both ends. The from_data method makes this possible.

Like before, first get the necessary headers, setup the namespaces and initialize the Python runtime and numpy module:

#include <boost/python/numpy.hpp>
#include <iostream>

namespace p = boost::python;
namespace np = boost::python::numpy;

int main(int argc, char **argv)

Create an array in C++ , and pass the pointer to it to the from_data method to create an ndarray:

int arr[] = {1,2,3,4,5};
np::ndarray py_array = np::from_data(arr, np::dtype::get_builtin<int>(),

Print the source C++ array, as well as the ndarray, to check if they are the same:

std::cout << "C++ array :" << std::endl;
for (int j=0;j<4;j++)
  std::cout << arr[j] << ' ';
std::cout << std::endl
          << "Python ndarray :" << p::extract<char const *>(p::str(py_array)) << std::endl;

Now, change an element in the Python ndarray, and check if the value changed correspondingly in the source C++ array:

py_array[1] = 5 ;
std::cout << "Is the change reflected in the C++ array used to create the ndarray ? " << std::endl;
for (int j = 0; j < 5; j++)
  std::cout << arr[j] << ' ';

Next, change an element of the source C++ array and see if it is reflected in the Python ndarray:

  arr[2] = 8;
  std::cout << std::endl
            << "Is the change reflected in the Python ndarray ?" << std::endl
            << p::extract<char const *>(p::str(py_array)) << std::endl;

As we can see, the changes are reflected across the ends. This happens because the from_data method passes the C++ array by reference to create the ndarray, and thus uses the same locations for storing data.