Lepton: A high-performance, pluggable particle engine and API for Python


Lepton is platform-independent and should run on any operating system supporting Python and OpenGL. Let us know if you try to build and run Lepton on an unusual platform.

The following are required to build and install Lepton:

  • Python 2.6+, 3.3+
  • OpenGL
  • A C compiler (GCC or Visual C++)

To build on Linux (and possibly other unix-like OSes) You will need to have the Python and libxext headers installed. On systems using the apt packaging system, this means you need to have the python-dev-all and libxext-dev packages installed. Specifically on Debian and Ubuntu, you will likely need the following packages installed:

xorg-dev libgl1-mesa-dev libglu1-mesa-dev

Binary releases for Windows are available for download from the google code site above. If you'd like to help out by contributing a binary distribution for your platform, you're more than welcome to!

The examples provided with Lepton require either pyglet (http://www.pyglet.org), or pygame (http://www.pygame.org), but neither are required to use the library.

Alpha Software

Lepton is currently under development, and the APIs may change in future versions. That said, it has many useful features already and the developers will attempt to minimize breakage where possible or provide migration documentation for new versions.

If you find a bug, or desire a feature, please use the issue tracker at:



If you're reading this README from a source distribution, install lepton with:

python setup.py install

If you just want to test it out without installing it, you can use:

python setup.py build_ext --inplace

Then add this directory to your PYTHONPATH.


If you find a bug, use the issue tracker above. If you'd like to discuss usage, new features or contribute to Lepton, join our google group at:



Casey Duncan -- Lepton creator and primary developer Jussi Lepistö -- Windows maintainer Andrew Charles -- Code contributor Harry Tormey -- Inspiration and code contributor

And thanks to others for their contributions of ideas and bugfixes!