Automatically commit and push IPython notebook

I’m currently teaching Python at a Software Carpentry workshop at North West University in Potchefstroom. As always there are concerns about pace and about how people can catch up if they fall behind. In a recent discussion on this topic on the Software Carpentry mailing list, David Dotson mentioned that he commits his IPython notebooks by pressing a custom keyboard shortcut which triggers an automatic git add/commit/push. No code was available, but I poked around a bit and found this StackOverflow question and answer which showed how to add a post-save hook to an IPython notebook (with details on doing the same for the newer Project Jupyter notebooks).

So here’s my code:

import os
from subprocess import check_call
from shlex import split

def post_save(model, os_path, contents_manager):
    """post-save hook for doing a git commit / push"""
    if model['type'] != 'notebook':
        return # only do this for notebooks
    workdir, filename = os.path.split(os_path)
    if filename.startswith('Scratch') or filename.startswith('Untitled'):
        return # skip scratch and untitled notebooks
    # now do git add / git commit / git push
    check_call(split('git add {}'.format(filename)), cwd=workdir)
    check_call(split('git commit -m "notebook save" {}'.format(filename)), cwd=workdir)
    check_call(split('git push'), cwd=workdir)

c.FileContentsManager.post_save_hook = post_save

This code obviously assumes that your working directory is a git repository and it has been configured with a remote to push to. For this workshop my notebooks are in this git repo on GitHub.

I created a new IPython profile (ipython profile create swcteaching) for use while teaching and added that code to the file. You can find this file’s location with ipython profile locate swcteaching.

The one little niggle is that the commit message is always the same. I don’t know IPython’s front-end code well enough, but perhaps there is a way to pop up a window and request a commit message (going towards something more like David Dotson’s solution and less like mine).