Primitives discovery

Primitives D3M namespace

The d3m.primitives module exposes all primitives under the same d3m.primitives namespace.

This is achieved using Python entry points. Python packages containing primitives should register them and expose them under the common namespace by adding an entry like the following to package’s

entry_points = {
    'd3m.primitives': [
        'primitive_namespace.PrimitiveName = my_package.my_module:PrimitiveClassName',

The example above would expose the my_package.my_module.PrimitiveClassName primitive under d3m.primitives.primitive_namespace.PrimitiveName.

Configuring entry_points in your does not just put primitives into a common namespace, but also helps with discovery of your primitives on the system. Then your package with primitives just have to be installed on the system and can be automatically discovered and used by any other Python code.

Note: Only primitive classes are available through the d3m.primitives namespace, no other symbols from a source module. In the example above, only PrimitiveClassName is available, not other symbols inside my_module (except if they are other classes also added to entry points).

Note: Modules under d3m.primitives are created dynamically at run-time based on information from entry points. So some tools (IDEs, code inspectors, etc.) might not find them because there are no corresponding files and directories under d3m.primitives module. You have to execute Python code for modules to be available. Static analysis cannot find them.

Primitives discovery on PyPi

To facilitate automatic discovery of primitives on PyPi (or any other compatible Python Package Index), publish a package with a keyword d3m_primitive in its configuration:


**Note:** Be careful when automatically discovering, installing, and
using primitives from unknown sources. While primitives are designed
to be bootstrapable and automatically installable without human
involvement, there are no isolation mechanisms yet in place for
running potentially malicious primitives. Currently recommended way
is to use manually curated lists of known primitives.

d3m.index API

The d3m.index module exposes the following Python utility functions.


Loads (if not already) a primitive class and returns it.


Returns a primitive class based on its ID from all currently loaded primitives.


Returns a list of all currently loaded primitives.


Loads all primitives available and populates d3m.primitives namespace with them.


Registers a primitive under d3m.primitives namespace.

This is useful to register primitives not necessary installed on the system or which are generated at runtime. It is also useful for testing purposes.


Returns package names from PyPi which provide D3M primitives.

This is determined by them having a d3m_primitive among package keywords.

Command line

The d3m.index module also provides a command line interface by running python3 -m d3m primitive. The following commands are currently available.

Use -h or --help argument to obtain more information about each command and its arguments.

python3 -m d3m primitive discover

Discovers primitives available on PyPi. Lists package names containing D3M primitives on PyPi.

python3 -m d3m primitive describe

Generates a primitive annotation of a primitive from its metadata.