Anaconda is a popular distribution of Python for Science-related projects. It comes with a very good Python IDE (Spyder) as part of the package. As well as a python package manager that is easy to use called conda. (Which is better IMO than the default pip package manager).

The LSDPlottingTools python scripts require a module called gdal, which is used for reading different types of geospatial data. Unfortunately this does not come with Anaconda as default, so you need to install it with conda:

conda install gdal

Appears to work fine at first (it installs many of the necessary dependencies - but not all). But when I launched the Spyder IDE and tried to run a LSDPlottingTools script, it complained that it could not find the ligdal.so.20 shared library. It turns out that conda has installed an older version of libgdal when it installed gdal. If you run conda list you’ll see that gdal is version 2.0 but libgdal is version 1.1 or similar. Luckily, there is a quick fix for this, just run conda install libgdal, and it will spot that it needs to update to version 2.0. Hooray!