[R] Floating-point arithmetic

(Ted Harding) Ted.Harding at nessie.mcc.ac.uk
Tue Sep 13 10:23:24 CEST 2005

Hi Folks,

A recent exchange on the 'octave' list led to the following
paper being cited, which I had not met before:

  What Every Computer Scientist Should Know About
  Floating-Point Arithmetic, by David Goldberg,

originally published in the March, 1991 issue of Computing Surveys.

PDF and HTML versions are widely available on the web (see Google),
e.g. at


Though over the years I've many times been there, done that,
got bitten by the bugs, and bought the T-shirt [I have one from
Florida depicting a large and joyful mosquito with proboscis
dripping with blood] I still found this a revealing read, written
in a style well-suited to general users of numerical computer

So I'm writing to bring it to the notice of R users who may not
have come across it.

(And also, maybe, to pre-empt that question that some of you may
have been thinking of asking ... ).

Best wishes to all,

E-Mail: (Ted Harding) <Ted.Harding at nessie.mcc.ac.uk>
Fax-to-email: +44 (0)870 094 0861
Date: 13-Sep-05                                       Time: 08:30:03
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