Dimitri De Franciscis

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Impossible Math

Submitted by dimitri on Tue, 02/03/2009 - 00:37

Can we trust computers calculations?

Introduction

IEEE 754 specification is the standard used for floating-point calculations in the engineering and scientific fields. In my humble opinion it is a perfect example of how computer industry and software development are based on a fundamental illusion of mankind: the possibility to attain and manipulate infinity (infinitely small, infinitely big, it doesn't matter).