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What Every Computer Scientist Should Know About Floating-Point Arithmetic

What Every Computer Scientist Should Know About Floating-Point Arithmetic

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Published by fluffy1777
Builders of computer systems often need information about floating-point arithmetic. There are, however, remarkably few sources of detailed information about it. http://docs.sun.com/source/806-3568/ncg_goldberg.html
Builders of computer systems often need information about floating-point arithmetic. There are, however, remarkably few sources of detailed information about it. http://docs.sun.com/source/806-3568/ncg_goldberg.html

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Published by: fluffy1777 on Mar 08, 2007
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2550 Garcia AvenueMountain View, CA 94043U.S.A.
What Every Computer Scientist Should Know About Floating-Point Arithmetic
Part No: 800-7895-10Revision A, June 1992
 
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©
1994 Sun Microsystems, Inc.2550 Garcia Avenue, Mountain View, California 94043-1100 U.S.A.All rights reserved. This product and related documentation are protected by copyright and distributed under licensesrestricting its use, copying, distribution, and decompilation. No part of this product or related documentation may bereproduced in any form by any means without prior written authorization of Sun and its licensors, if any.Portions of this product may be derived from the UNIX
®
and Berkeley 4.3 BSD systems, licensed from UNIX SystemLaboratories, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Novell, Inc., and the University of California, respectively. Third-party fontsoftware in this product is protected by copyright and licensed from Sun’s font suppliers.RESTRICTED RIGHTS LEGEND: Use, duplication, or disclosure by the United States Government is subject to the restrictionsset forth in DFARS 252.227-7013 (c)(1)(ii) and FAR 52.227-19.The product described in this manual may be protected by one or more U.S. patents, foreign patents, or pending applications.TRADEMARKSSun, the Sun logo, Sun Microsystems, Sun Microsystems Computer Corporation, Solaris, are trademarks or registeredtrademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries. UNIX is a registered trademark of Novell, Inc., inthe United States and other countries; X/Open Company, Ltd., is the exclusive licensor of such trademark. OPEN LOOK
®
is aregistered trademark of Novell, Inc. PostScript and Display PostScript are trademarks of Adobe Systems, Inc. All otherproduct names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.All SPARC trademarks, including the SCD Compliant Logo, are trademarks or registered trademarks of SPARC International,Inc. SPARCstation, SPARCserver, SPARCengine, SPARCstorage, SPARCware, SPARCcenter, SPARCclassic, SPARCcluster,SPARCdesign, SPARC811, SPARCprinter, UltraSPARC, microSPARC, SPARCworks, and SPARCompiler are licensedexclusively to Sun Microsystems, Inc. Products bearing SPARC trademarks are based upon an architecture developed by SunMicrosystems, Inc.The OPEN LOOKand Sun™ Graphical User Interfaces were developed by Sun Microsystems, Inc. for its users and licensees.Sun acknowledges the pioneering efforts of Xerox in researching and developing the concept of visual or graphical userinterfaces for the computer industry. Sun holds a non-exclusive license from Xerox to the Xerox Graphical User Interface,which license also covers Suns licensees who implement OPEN LOOK GUIs and otherwise comply with Sun’s written licenseagreements.X Window System is a product of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.THIS PUBLICATION IS PROVIDED “AS IS” WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED,INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR APARTICULAR PURPOSE, OR NON-INFRINGEMENT.THIS PUBLICATION COULD INCLUDE TECHNICAL INACCURACIES OR TYPOGRAPHICAL ERRORS. CHANGES AREPERIODICALLY ADDED TO THE INFORMATION HEREIN; THESE CHANGES WILL BE INCORPORATED IN NEWEDITIONS OF THE PUBLICATION. SUN MICROSYSTEMS, INC. MAY MAKE IMPROVEMENTS AND/OR CHANGES INTHE PRODUCT(S) AND/OR THE PROGRAM(S) DESCRIBED IN THIS PUBLICATION AT ANY TIME
 
iii
Contents
Abstract. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2Rounding Error . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2Floating-point Formats. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3Relative Error and Ulps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5Guard Digits. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6Cancellation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8The IEEE Standard. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .17Formats and Operations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18Special Quantities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .24
NaN
s. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25Exceptions, Flags and Trap Handlers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32Systems Aspects. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .37Instruction Sets. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .38Languages and Compilers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40

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