[Numpy-discussion] What does float64 mean on a 32-bit machine?

reckoner reckoner at gmail.com
Wed Mar 24 18:38:27 EDT 2010

How can I have a float64 dtype on a 32-bit machine? For example:

In [90]: x = array([1/3],dtype=float32)

In [91]: x
Out[91]: array([ 0.33333334], dtype=float32)

In [92]: x = array([1/3],dtype=float64)

In [93]: x
Out[93]: array([ 0.33333333])

Obviously, the float32 and float64 representations of 1/3 are different, 
but what is the meaning of float64 on a 32-bit machine? Shouldn't a 
32-bit machine only be able represent float32?


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