[Python-ideas] Add time.time_ns(): system clock with nanosecond resolution

Nick Coghlan ncoghlan at gmail.com
Sat Oct 14 11:46:50 EDT 2017

On 14 October 2017 at 18:21, Antoine Pitrou <solipsis at pitrou.net> wrote:

> On Sat, 14 Oct 2017 10:49:11 +0300
> Serhiy Storchaka <storchaka at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > I don't like the idea of adding a parallel set of functions.
> >
> > In the list of alternatives in PEP 410 there is no an idea about fixed
> > precision float type with nanoseconds precision. It can be implemented
> > internally as a 64-bit integer, but provide all methods required for
> > float-compatible number. It would be simpler and faster than general
> > Decimal.
> I agree a parallel set of functions is not ideal, but I think a parallel
> set of functions is still more appropriate than a new number type
> specific to the time module.
> Also, if you change existing functions to return a new type, you risk
> breaking compatibility even if you are very careful about designing the
> new type.

Might it make more sense to have a parallel *module* that works with a
different base data type rather than parallel functions within the existing

That is, if folks wanted to switch to 64-bit nanosecond time, they would

* time_ns.time()
* time_ns.monotonic()
* time_ns.perf_counter()
* time_ns.clock_gettime()
* time_ns.clock_settime()

The idea here would be akin to the fact we have both math and cmath as
modules, where the common APIs conceptually implement the same algorithms,
they just work with a different numeric type (floats vs complex numbers).


Nick Coghlan   |   ncoghlan at gmail.com   |   Brisbane, Australia
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