This math scares me

Darren New dnew at
Wed Mar 14 00:21:52 CET 2001

Grant Edwards wrote:
> Of course we'd never imagined we'd ever see hardware FP and BCD
> libraries were only marginally slower than binary ones. Now
> that FP is usually in hardware, BCD FP (or fixed point) will be
> pretty slow by comparison.

One mainframe I worked on (Xerox 560, AKA Sigma 9) had the "scientific
module" which was hardware floating point, and the "business module" which
was the hardware BCD. The latter added instructions like "Edit byte string"
that would copy packed BCD into a string according to COBOL display-edit
formatting. (Or whatever COBOL called the "print using" formatting. Too many
years. Not enough COBOL. Or something like that.)

Darren New / Senior MTS & Free Radical / Invisible Worlds Inc.
San Diego, CA, USA (PST).  Cryptokeys on demand.

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