3-arg float pow()
tim at zope.com
Tue Sep 4 20:50:02 CEST 2001
> I would expect pow to use multiplication when the exponent is an
> integer (with a signle division if it's negative),
As I said, that's less accurate than a decent libm pow() when floats are
involved, so is a bad idea in that case.
> and the libm pow or equivalently exp(b*ln(a)) if the exponent is a float.
Sorry, but a libm that implemented pow(x, y) literally as exp(b*ln(a))
couldn't be given away (it's numerically atrocious for large |ln(a)| and/or
large |b| -- decent fp math libraries are much harder to write than I expect
you're aware of).
> So (-3)**2 would be defined, but (-3)**2.0 would be not.
Current CVS Python handles both fine, and even a raw libm pow() should have
no problems with pow(-3, 2.0).
> And 3**(-2) should return a rational.
If we had rationals, sure. In the meantime 0.1111111111111111 is better
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