37
votes
2answers
3k views

Why do some languages round to the nearest EVEN integer?

Programming languages like Scheme (R5RS) and Python (see this Question) round towards the nearest even integer when value is exactly between the surrounding integers. What is the reasoning behind ...
3
votes
2answers
66 views

Trivially Sortable Encoding for Arbitrary-Precision Decimals

I'm looking for a reasonably(*) space-efficient way to encode arbitrary-precision decimals (e.g. BigDecimal), such that when sorting the bit-pattern of the encodings lexicographically, the numbers ...
14
votes
4answers
544 views

How to identify unstable floating point computations?

In numerics, it is very important to be able to identify unstable schemes and to improve their stability. How to identify unstable floating point computations? I am working on a very complex ...
20
votes
6answers
4k views

Why don't computers store decimal numbers as a second whole number?

Computers have trouble storing fractional numbers where the denominator is something other than a solution to 2^x. This is because the first digit after the decimal is worth 1/2, the second 1/4 (or ...