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*To*: William D Clinger <will@xxxxxxxxxxx>*Subject*: Re: arithmetic issues*From*: Alan Watson <a.watson@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>*Date*: Wed, 18 Jan 2006 19:13:04 -0600*Cc*: srfi-77@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx*Delivered-to*: srfi-77@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx*In-reply-to*: <E1EzMi7-0002qI-Vc@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>*Organization*: Centro de Radioastronomía y Astrofísica UNAM*References*: <E1EzMi7-0002qI-Vc@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>*User-agent*: Mozilla Thunderbird 1.0.7 (X11/20051113)

William D Clinger wrote:

Would the following proposal satisfy your goals: (a) Mandate unlimited size exact integers in the base language. (b) Push fl+ et al. off into a library module.No. The fundamental problem with R5RS arithmetic is that programmers cannot rely on the behavior of the arithmetic primitives. Mandating exact integers of unlimited size would help, but programmers would still not know whether (/ 3 4) will evaluate to 3/4, 0, 1, or 0.75. To solve this problem, we have to require some subset of the tower that has reasonable closure properties, while banishing any arithmetic operations that are not closed over that subset. We have to do both.

In my opinion, two fairly extreme positions are the most attractive. Either require the full tower as part of the base language, or require only the fixnum/flonum foundation while banishing + and the other generic operations to the libraries.

Regards, Alan

-- Dr Alan Watson Centro de Radioastronomía y Astrofísica Universidad Astronómico Nacional de México

**References**:**Re: arithmetic issues***From:*William D Clinger

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