Unexpected results comparing float to Fraction

MRAB python at mrabarnett.plus.com
Mon Jul 29 19:04:19 CEST 2013

On 29/07/2013 17:40, Ian Kelly wrote:
> On Mon, Jul 29, 2013 at 10:20 AM, Chris Angelico <rosuav at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Mon, Jul 29, 2013 at 5:09 PM, MRAB <python at mrabarnett.plus.com> wrote:
>>> I'm surprised that Fraction(1/3) != Fraction(1, 3); after all, floats
>>> are approximate anyway, and the float value 1/3 is more likely to be
>>> Fraction(1, 3) than Fraction(6004799503160661, 18014398509481984).
>> At what point should it become Fraction(1, 3)?
> At the point where the float is exactly equal to the value you get
> from the floating-point division 1/3.  If it's some other float then
> the user didn't get there by entering 1/3, so it's not worth trying to
> pretend that they did.
I thought that you're not meant to check for equality when using floats.

> We do a similar rounding when formatting floats to strings, but in
> that case one only has to worry about divisors that are powers of 10.
> I imagine it's going to take more time to find the correct fraction
> when any pair of relatively prime integers can be a candidate
> numerator and denominator.  Additionally, the string rounding only
> occurs when the float is being formatted for display; we certainly
> don't do it as the result of numeric operations where it could result
> in loss of precision.

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