[Python-ideas] Floating point contexts in Python core

Sturla Molden sturla at molden.no
Fri Oct 12 12:39:37 CEST 2012

On 12.10.2012 03:03, Steven D'Aprano wrote:

 > Any half-decent processor supports the IEEE-754 standard. If it doesn't,
 > it's broken by design.
 > Even in user-space, you're not giving up that much speed in practical
 > terms, at least not for my needs. The new decimal module in Python 3.3 is
 > less than a factor of 10 times slower than Python's floats, which 
makes it
 > pretty much instantaneous to my mind :)

I will not have any effect on the flops rate. The other stuff the 
interpreter must do when using floats (allocating and deleting float 
objects on the heap, initializing new objects, etc.) will dominate the 
run-time performance. Even a simple check for divide-by-zero (as we have 
today) will be more expensive than using another numerical context 
inside the hardware.


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